U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum: A Profound Reminder

January 24, 2012 by

Free Things To Do, Top Attractions, Unforgettable Experiences

Open since 1993 and designed by a Holocaust survivor, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. has welcomed millions of visitors from all nationalities, political leanings, ethnicities and religions. It’s more than a collection of photos and pamphlets; the museum also supports ongoing research, preserves evidence and artwork, runs educational programs, collaborates with foreign offices, holds commemorations… and even has free podcasts through iTunes.

Visiting the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum is part of these Washington DC tours.

U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

Eternal flame at Hall of Remembrance inside USHMM – their official memorial to the millions who died

Its mission statement centers mostly on fostering awareness of the tragic events that occurred during this time – and making sure they never happen again. With more than 60 million pages of material, 85,000 photos and 16,000 artifacts, the Holocaust Memorial Museum has, to say the least, done its research.

The Permanent Exhibition features a railcar, a handful of theaters showing historic footage, and artifacts spread over three floors. The “Remember the Children: Daniel’s Story” exhibit is less graphic and thus more appropriate for elementary and middle school students, who frequently visit from all over the country (Daniel is a fictional character, but his story draws from experiences of real children).

Other exhibits include “A Dangerous Lie: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” which explores the impact of an anti-semitic publication; “State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda,” which draws connections through the entire war via the presence of manipulation techniques and hate speech; and the more interactive Wexner Center, which has eyewitness testimonies, a survivor registry, and frightening accounts of the conflict in Darfur.

There is also a memorial plaque honoring a security guard who was gunned down and killed by a white supremacist (who was also a Holocaust denier) in June of 2009.

The USHMM is right by the National Mall. Admission is free, but passes are necessary during the busy months (March-August) to keep the visitor flow steady and spaced. Also, parents should bear in mind that some of the material in these exhibits can be disturbing for young children, so prep them properly or maybe stick to the less intense areas if the kiddies aren’t in double-digits yet – there are family guides at the info desk to help you navigate.

- Natalie Grant

, , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply