[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Documents, photographs, keep-sakes or everyday articles – the Land of Oświęcim Residents’ Memory Museum, which was created several months ago, has been systematically enlarging its collection. This is mainly thanks to local residents who enrich the collection. This was the case when in October 2018, Mr and Mrs Zygmunt Kornaś contacted the Museum Director in order to hand over keep-sakes from their forefathers who helped KL Auschwitz- Birkenau prisoners during World War II. “It is a special day and a significant event for us, which I hope will encourage other people to come forward who would like to share their memories with us. The aim of all of this is to document this is yet very important but little shown and emphasised element of our history as well as possible,” said Dorota Mleczko, Museum Director, during the official meeting.
The meeting was held in the Starostwo (District Authorities’ Building) on 11th October 2018 during which Dorota and Zygmunt Kornaś from Spytkowice transferred their valuable documents and photographs to the Museum.
“I found out about the Museum’s existence recently which really pleased me as I have been collecting information about my forefathers who helped camp prisoners during World War II in Oświęcim. In my grandmother’s house there was a secret transit point for the escapees from the German camp at Auschwitz,” said Zygmunt Kornaś and added, “I have already collected some documents, but do not intend to stop here. I would like there to be more so that the memory of the people of those times will not be forgotten.”
As Museum Director Dorota Mleczko emphasised, everybody who is in the possession of documents that used to belong to their forefathers who helped others during World War II, often unnamed, at great risk to not only their own life but the life of their nearest and dearest should feel obliged to share their mementos and their memories. It is all with the aim of keeping the memory alive and also to educate not only local people but all Poles and people from all around the world.
“In the best way we possibly can, we would like to return to the people who brought aid to prisoners, the status/ significance due to them and honour them,” noted the Director.
The Museum is interested in documents, photographs and everyday articles as well as journals. Any artefacts received will be appropriately secured and subsequently displayed in the permanent exhibition of the Museum. The Museum will be houses in the so-called “Lagerhaus” building which is approx. 200m from the former German concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. From 1924 the building was a raw materials’ store for the Polish Tobacco Monopoly. Between 1940 – 44, it was a food store unit for the SS camp staff.
Jarosław Jurzak, Deputy District Head also encourages the enrichment and creation of the Museum collection: “If you, ladies and gentlemen, have family keep-sakes in the form of documents, letters or photos from that time, I encourage you to share them with us so that other residents can also see them in order that the memory of these heroes is kept alive for future generations.”
If you are interested in sharing your mementos with us (or your memories from the period of WWII) please do contact the Museum: tel.: 00 48 33 4474084 or via email: email@example.com.