Exhibits >> The Gathering Storm >> Jewish Life in Eastern Europe before the Second World War, 1935-1939

Der Schild Unzer Express Glos Gminy Zydowskiej A Pesti izraelita hitkozseg gimnaziumanak evkonyve Gezunthayt-Kalendar, Veselibas Kalendars

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Jewish Life in Eastern Europe before the Second World War, 1935-1939

The materials displayed in this section all originate from Eastern Europe in the late 1930s, including Romania, Poland, Hungary and Latvia, and comprise three journals, a calendar and a yearbook. The Romanian Yiddish newspaper, the Tchernovitser Bleter, is represented by an edition from 1934 commemorating the 200th issue, and by an edition from 1935 celebrating 60 years of the Yiddish theater, which was born in Romania. The thriving intellectual and social environment of pre-war Czernowitz would soon be shattered by the destruction of its entire community. The Polish Yiddish newspaper, Unzer Express, extremely popular in its day (now scarcely available) is represented by an issue from 1935 which celebrates the 70th birthday of the great Yiddishist, Chaim Zhitlovsky. A commemorative issue of the Polish periodical the “Jewish Community Voice” celebrates 75 years from the Polish Uprising in January 1863 and the part played by Jews in supporting their countrymen. A piece that no doubt served to emphasize Jewish loyalty to Poland during a time of rising anti-Semitism. A school yearbook from Budapest in 1938 provides a snapshot of communal life and the Jewish school system one year before the advent of the Second World War which would see the destruction of around 100,000 Hungarian Jews. A calendar from Riga in 1939 celebrates the OZE (Society for the Protection of Jewish Health) which was founded in Latvia in 1922. Photographs, articles and lists from Riga provide important information about a community that would soon disappear.