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Schindler Saved 1,200 Jews in This Factory. Can It Be Saved?

Inside the effort to preserve the Brnenec textile factory

(Newser) - August brought the news that the Czech factory where Oskar Schindler famously saved the lives of 1,200 Jews had perhaps found a savoir of its own. In extreme disrepair since it ceased operations a dozen years ago, the Brnenec textile factory had after what the Telegraph describes as protracted... More »

Dolls Are Last Trace of Sisters Lost in Holocaust

Among 200 objects from those deported on display at Paris Holocaust museum

(Newser) - It was snowing on Feb. 24, 1944, when Jewish children in the French town of Gemeaux were rounded up at their school. Two sisters, Denise and Micheline Lévy, aged 10 and 9, clutched dolls—one pink, one blue—as they were led away to Auschwitz. A gendarme grabbed the... More »

Holocaust Hero's Will Found in a Box

Jane Haining is called 'Scotland’s Schindler'

(Newser) - She was prisoner 79467 at Auschwitz, where she died in 1944. She was also "Scotland’s Schindler," and the sole Scot listed as "righteous among the nations" at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Israel. Now, a new window into the life of Jane Haining by way... More »

Man Held at 9 Nazi Camps Dies

His life mission was to speak about Nazi atrocities

(Newser) - During his imprisonment at nine separate concentration camps, including Auschwitz, Abraham Peck expected death to come at any moment. Instead, he lived a full life that came to an end last Thursday at age 91 due to kidney failure, reports the New Jersey Record . The last Jewish survivor from the... More »

Family of The Pianist Wins Suit Over Nazi Claims

Appeals court sides with Wladyslaw Szpilman's family

(Newser) - Allegations that composer Wladyslaw Szpilman, whose story inspired the 2002 film The Pianist, was a Nazi collaborator amount to defamation, a Polish appeals court has decided, according to the Guardian . Previously, a judge had ruled that a claim made in the biography of Polish-Jewish singer Wiera Gran that Szpilman had... More »

Meet the 'Most Hated Jew' in Lithuania

Efraim Zuroff is known as 'the last Nazi hunter'

(Newser) - Efraim Zuroff is the "most hated Jew in Lithuania," and proud of it. Zuroff, known as the last Nazi hunter, gained that reputation through his efforts to get Lithuania to "admit its complicity" in the Holocaust, he says. Collaborating with occupying Nazis, Lithuania killed 90%—by some... More »

Elie Wiesel, Holocaust Survivor and Nobel Laureate, Has Died

He was 87

(Newser) - Nobel laureate and Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel has died at the age of 87, the AP reports. The death of one of the world's foremost witnesses and humanitarians was announced Saturday. Wiesel summed up his mission in 1986 when accepting the Nobel Peace Prize: "Whenever and wherever human... More »

Tunnel Hand-Dug by Jews to Flee Nazis Found in Lithuania

It's been the stuff of legend for more than 70 years

(Newser) - A 100-foot escape tunnel dug by Jewish prisoners using only their hands and spoons has been unearthed in Lithuania, a research team announced Wednesday. From 1941 to 1944, about 100,000 people (70,000 of them Jews from nearby Vilnius) were slaughtered by the Nazis, then dumped into burial pits... More »

Man Admits to Lying About Escaping Auschwitz

Joseph Hirt even got an actual prisoner's number tattooed on his arm

(Newser) - A 91-year-old Pennsylvania man has admitted to lying for years about being an Auschwitz survivor, even going so far as to have an actual prisoner's number tattooed on his arm, the AP reports. Joseph Hirt has lectured to numerous school groups and organizations about his experience escaping from Auschwitz.... More »

Professor Tells the Secret Story of the 'Nazi Titanic'

Accidental bombing of Cap Arcona killed thousands of concentration-camp inmates

(Newser) - The ship was fashioned after the Titanic, and met an end no less tragic, but the tale of the Cap Arcona—and the thousands of concentration-camp prisoners who lost their lives aboard it—is one you've likely never heard. The "Nazi Titanic" gets its due in a new... More »

16K Items That Vanished From Auschwitz Are Found

They were sitting in boxes at the Polish Academy of Sciences

(Newser) - Jewelry, tobacco pipes, buttons, keys. Archaeologists uncovered more than 16,000 such items in the remains of Auschwitz's Crematorium III and gas chamber in 1967—"the last personal belongings of the Jews" led to their deaths. But while watching an old documentary about the excavation, Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum officials... More »

Ring Was Hidden at Auschwitz for More Than 70 Years

Once, it was somebody's 'ray of hope'

(Newser) - The owner of a gold ring and necklace found at Auschwitz was almost certainly murdered by the Nazis, but she hid her valuables so well that they weren't found by her killers—or by anybody else for another 70 years. The Auschwitz Museum says curators discovered the items in... More »

Auschwitz Survivor Denied Testimony in Nazi Guard's Trial

Joshua Kaufman traveled all the way from California to Germany to testify

(Newser) - An 88-year-old Auschwitz survivor who traveled all the way from his home in Los Angeles to Germany to testify in the trial of a former Nazi SS guard will not be allowed to do so, a judge ruled Friday. "I lost my whole family, I survived five concentration camps,... More »

Book Details Women's 'Horrifically Unspeakable' Suffering Under Nazis

Both Jewish and non-Jewish women suffered

(Newser) - "We don't have the right to say it's too difficult to read." That's what Beverley Chalmers says about her book Birth, Sex and Abuse: Women's Voices Under Nazi Rule , which chronicles the "horrific" experiences endured by both Jewish and non-Jewish women as the... More »

Museum Peeved Over Anne Frank 'Escape Room'

Operator says it's 'an educational experience'

(Newser) - The Anne Frank Foundation has criticized an "escape room" made to look like the Amsterdam apartment where the teenage Jewish diarist hid with her family from the Nazis. According to its website , the Escape Bunker in Valkenswaard, Netherlands, has a room styled to look like the apartment. Visitors are... More »

Years After Mysterious Death, 1st Nazi Hunter in Limelight

Prosecutor Fritz Bauer wasn't just Jewish, but a gay atheist

(Newser) - Nearly 50 years after he was mysteriously found dead in a bath tub, two new films are helping to put Germany's first Nazi hunter Fritz Bauer "back where he belongs: in the collective consciousness," reports Munich daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung , via AFP . Both Labyrinth of Lies by Giulio... More »

Holocaust Victims Return to Auschwitz 71 Years Later

Some wore sashes that recalled the striped clothing prisoners were forced to wear

(Newser) - Dozens of elderly Holocaust survivors lit candles at Auschwitz on Wednesday, exactly 71 years after the Soviet army liberated the death camp that has become the most powerful symbol of the human suffering inflicted by Nazi Germany during World War II. The commemoration at the former death camp in southern... More »

2 Days Before He Hanged, Adolf Eichmann Wrote This

The high-ranking Nazi pleaded for his life, futilely

(Newser) - In all of Israeli history, only one man has been sentenced to death by a civilian court and then executed: Adolf Eichmann. On Wednesday, the country released the Nazi's handwritten plea for clemency, penned two days before he was hanged. The AFP reports the release coincides with International Holocaust... More »

Story of How US Soldier Saved 200 Jews Finally Told

Roddie Edmonds honored for his remarkable move in POW camp

(Newser) - Roddie Edmonds is the first US soldier to receive Israel's Righteous Among the Nations honor, 70 years after he risked his life to save 200 Jews. The native of Knoxville, Tenn., was captured in the Battle of the Bulge in late 1944 and held at German POW camp Staleg... More »

Survivor of Nazi Camps' Only Mass Escape Has Died

Thomas Blatt worked to ensure Sobibor couldn't be erased

(Newser) - After an extraordinary life of tragedy and triumph, Holocaust survivor Thomas Blatt passed away at home in Santa Barbara on Saturday, reports the Los Angeles Times . He was 88 and suffered dementia. Though 250,000 who arrived at Sobibor concentration camp never left, Blatt was one of 50 Jews to... More »

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