Remembrance

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Friday, May 29, 2020

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Aristedes de Sousa Mendes

Anyone who has seen “Casablanca” knows the connection between Portugal and World War II refugees. But few know the story of the Portuguese diplomat Aristides de Sousa Mendes, who in 1940 saved tens of thousands of lives only to be punished for this heroism by his own government. As we mark Holocaust Remembrance Day on Sunday, we should honor this man who engaged in what one historian called “perhaps the largest rescue action by a single individual during the Holocaust.”

 

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Haym Solomon Patriot 

Haym Salomon (April 7, 1740 – Jan. 6, 1785) was a Polish-born American Jewish businessman and political financial broker who immigrated to New York City from Poland during the period of the American Revolution. He helped convert the French loans into ready cash by selling bills of exchange for Robert Morris, the Superintendent of Finance. In this way he aided the Continental Army and was possibly, along with Morris, the prime financier of the American side during the American Revolutionary War against Great Britain.

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 Screen Shot 2017 06 06 at 12.14.24 PM

Architect Zaha Hadid captured the world's attention and shattered glass ceilings (in addition to designing some) by becoming the first woman to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004. She was also the first woman awarded the Royal Gold Medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects. ​Initially dubbed the “paper architect”, Dame Zaha Hadid’s plans were once perceived to be unbuildable. She died in London at the age of 65 of a heart attack in March of 2016.

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Fredy Hirsch

The name of Fredy Hirsch is inseparably connected with the education of children and young people in the Terezín ghetto, and finally in the "family camp“ at Birkenau. In particular, the "children's block,“ established on Hirsch's initiative in the BIIb section of the Birkenau camp, was a remarkable attempt to create a small oasis within the death camp. Its main purpose was to ensure that Auschwitz's youngest prisoners had, at least for a short while, a more tolerable environment in which they would be isolated from the tragic reality around them.

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90th Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade POSTER 

To commemorate the multicultural harvest feast of 1621 at Plymouth Rock, about three million New Yorkers and visitors annually station themselves on freezing late-November streets to watch giant inflatable branded cartoon characters, all promoting a department store that filed for bankruptcy protection more than 25 years ago. Something like that. More than 40 million people watch it on television. Even compared to eating turkey, a dish that few people truly make well, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, now in its 92nd year, is a bit of a head-scratcher.  See historic photographies from the New York Times coverage.