Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner and Consul of the Republic of Poland Robert Rusiecki present: a ceremony to unveil the new Ulma Family Museum of Poles Who Saved Jews during WWII streamed live during a press conference at the Office of the Illinois Governor.
WHEN: Thursday, March 17, 2016, 10AM–11:30AM
WHERE: Thompson Center, 100 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60601, Blue Room, 15th floor, free admission
The new Ulma Family Museum in Markowa, Podkarpackie, Poland will document the history of sacrifice and altruism to save human lives during WWII in German-occupied Poland. It will be named after the Ulma family, Polish citizens: Jozef, his wife Wiktoria, who was seven month pregnant, and their six small children – Stanislawa, Barbara, Wladyslawa, Franciszka, Maria and Antoni, all of whom were shot by the German military for breaking the Nazi laws in occupied Poland which prohibited Poles from providing any assistance for Jews. The Germans also shot the Jews whom the Ulmas were hiding – a family by the name of Szall, along with two sisters – Golda and Layka Goldman. The Ulma family became the symbol of the heroism of all Polish rescuers of Jews under German occupation. Bringing any help to Jews was punishable by death in German-occupied Poland, the only such place in the entire German-occupied Europe.
The State of Israel has honored the rescuers of Jews from many countries with the medal “Righteous Among the Nations”. From among24,811 Righteous Gentiles, 6,532 documented rescuers were Polish. The mission of the Museum will be to honor the memory of both the rescuers and the rescued. By saving individual lives, they saved generations.
The March 17 ceremony in Poland will be attended, among others, by the President of Poland Andrzej Duda and heads of state or government from Germany, Israel as well as officials from the United States.
Along with the conference, a special historical exhibit will be displayed in the Atrium of the Thompson Center, titled: “They Risked Their Lives: Poles Who Saved Jews from the Holocaust”. It will be on display from Monday, March 14 through Friday, March 18.
All described events are open to the public.
For more information, call Vice-Consul Konrad Zieliński at the Consulate General of Poland in Chicago: 312-337-8166, ext. 218.