Walking in the Shoes of Babes
Moving Collection of Children’s Shoes Comes to Holocaust Museum
Shoes wouldn’t normally evoke emotions such as anger and sadness. But a new collection going on display this month at Holocaust Museum Houston provokes just those feelings. Why? Because these shoes were once worn on the feet of babes as they made their exodus from innocence.

In what is already an introspective and moving chronicle of life during the Holocaust, Holocaust Museum Houston has added a collection of children’s shoes to its permanent exhibit, Bearing Witness. These shoes were recovered from the Majdanek concentration camp outside of Lublin, Poland, and bear heart wrenching testimony to what occurred there.

Said Holocaust Museum Houston Chairperson Eileen Weisman of the collection, “These shoes, these tiny shoes, belonged to children who are no more and whose potential was never seen. Of the millions who perished in the Holocaust, the loss of 1.5 million children truly demonstrates the inhumanity and horror of this terrible time in history.”

The Majdenek camp was one of six death camps located in the area in and around Lublin, Poland. It became operational in October of 1941 and was established on the orders of Heinrich Himmler. Approximately 500,000 people passed through this camp from 28 countries and 54 nationalities. 360,000 people perished at the camp, 40% of them were killed upon arrival including most of the children.

Through an interesting chain of events, the shoes are now on loan from the State Museum at Majdanek in Lublin, Poland as part of a special arrangement with museum officials there.

Holocaust Museum Houston will exhibit the rare artifacts in exchange for its agreement to help preserve them. Over the next five years, Holocaust Museum Houston will exchange numerous shoes with the Majdanek museum enabling these extraordinary items to be saved for posterity to propagate their story for generations.

Holocaust Museum Houston is an education center and living memorial dedicated to teaching the dangers of prejudice, hate and apathy against the backdrop of the Holocaust by fostering remembrance, tolerance and education. The museum’s Morgan Family Center is free and open to the public and located in Houston’s Museum District at 5401 Caroline Street, Houston, TX 77004. Its Internet address is http://www.hmh.org.

To preview the collection of shoes or obtain images, to arrange interviews with child survivors of the Holocaust, or to obtain further information about the shoes and the story of how they got to Houston, please contact Michael Rosen at (713) 942-8000 ext. 103.
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All requests for interviews or on-site photography or videography by members of the media must be coordinated in advance through our Public Relations office by calling 713-942-8000, ext. 103 or e-mailing news@hmh.org.

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Holocaust Museum Houston is an accredited member of the American Alliance of Museums.

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Museum Hours:

Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.

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$12 for adults
$8 for active-duty military and AARP members
Free for children, students and college-level students with valid ID
Free admission on Sundays

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