16 February 2017
The Yad Vashem Archives, which house the most comprehensive collection of Holocaust-era documentation in the world, is proud to announce the addition of the personal collection of the late Prof. Yaffa Eliach. Prof. Eliach, Holocaust survivor, historian and author, dedicated her life to documenting the events and victims of the Holocaust, as well as the legacy of the survivors. An event at Yad Vashem presenting her personal collection will take place on 20 February 2017 at 13:00 in the Constantiner Lecture Hall. The collection was shipped to Yad Vashem in more than 500 archival containers weighing over a ton and will be cataloged as an independent archival division, available to both researchers and the greater public. Prof. Yaffa Eliach passed away on 8 November 2016 at the age of 79.
Prof. Eliach was one of the leading pioneers in Holocaust research and education in the United States, as well as a forerunner in collating and researching the oral testimonies of Holocaust survivors. Professor Yaffa Eliach Shtetl Collection is carefully organized and spans a half-century of recorded testimonies, transcripts, diaries, authentic memoirs and original documents in English, Hebrew, Polish, German, Russian and Yiddish; individual photographs and photo albums; and articles she composed regarding the history of Eastern European Jews in general and in Eishishok, her native town in Lithuania, in particular. She also published several books about the Holocaust, but is most famously known for her work "The Tower of Faces," an exhibit featured at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, DC, which features 1,500 photographs of approximately 3,500 Jews murdered in her hometown.
The event, which will be moderated by Dr. Haim Gertner, Director of the Yad Vashem Archives Division and Fred Hillman Chair for Holocaust Documentation, will include addresses by Rabbi Dr. David Eliach, Prof. Eliach's husband, who will present "Prof. Yaffa Eliach: A Woman of Vision, Initiative and Creativity"; Rabbanit Esther Farbstein, Head of Holocaust Studies at the Michlala Jerusalem College, who will discuss the topic "Hasidim, 'Misnagdim' and Everyone in Between, as Portrayed in the Work of Prof. Yaffa Eliach"; and Judith Cohen, Chief Acquisitions Curator at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, who will speak on "'The Tower of Faces': Visualizing the Holocaust Through the Eyes of One Shtetl."
"The Yaffa Eliach Shtetl Collection is one of the largest private Holocaust-related collections of its kind," says Yad Vashem's Archives Director Dr. Haim Gertner. "It is therefore appropriate for it to be included in the Yad Vashem Archives, which houses the largest collection of Holocaust-related documentation. The Eliach Collection was one of the first micro-history projects on the Holocaust. The more than 6,000 photographs in the collection provide a visual testimony to the existence of the town of Eishishok where over 90% of one town's population was murdered during the Holocaust."
The event will be conducted in Hebrew with simultaneous translation in English. Any press interested in attending MUST RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or call +972-02-644-3410.
About the Yad Vashem Archives: The Yad Vashem Archives house the largest collection of Holocaust-era documentation worldwide. Ongoing efforts, including the yearly scanning of millions of pages of documenation, have made much of the archival collections accessible to the public, thus exposing the wealth of information gathered by Yad Vashem to an ever-growing global audience.