30 April 2008
Marking Holocaust Remembrance Day tomorrow, Yad Vashem will upload its photo archives. Some 130,000 images will be uploaded on Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day, May 1, from the collection, the largest of its kind in the world. The images include photographs taken in the ghettos, during the deportations, images that illustrate slave labor, the camps, liberation and more. These photographs represent an invaluable asset to historians, educators, writers, filmmakers and the public at large.
Now, a significant part of this collection is being made available to the public. Users will be able to search the database by topic, name or location. High quality scans of the images may be ordered for a fee via a link on the site. Photographs in the database are also linked to existing information about its content, and when you click on an image, a Google map will automatically open, showing the location of the places mentioned in the caption. Other links enable expanded searches.
“Over the last few years, Yad Vashem has invested significantly in the computerization of its various collections,” said Avner Shalev, Chairman of Yad Vashem. “This will allow the public at large direct and simple access to the vast collection of resources collected by Yad Vashem over the past half century. We are hoping that it will increase public awareness of the archives’ tremendous importance, and encourage people who have similar photographs and documents to confer them to Yad Vashem for safekeeping.”
Dr. Haim Gertner, Director of the Yad Vashem Archives added, “We are hoping that the public will join us in our ongoing efforts to decipher the pictures and identify the people in them.”
Yad Vashem’s photographic collection began with the gathering of individual and group photographs immediately after World War II. When the Yad Vashem Archives opened in 1955, these collections were incorporated within. In 1983, a separate photographic department was established, with the purpose of collating, cataloguing and researching historic photographs relating to the Holocaust. The photographs come from a variety of sources, including official archives, private collections, museums and various historic collections.
Attached images from the Yad Vashem Photo Archives.