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March 2009

Release Date: March 26, 2009ASU Logo

ASU to Host Holocaust Memorials in April

The horrors of the Holocaust will be recalled through a series of related events during the month of April on the Angelo State University campus.

Beginning April 3, the traveling exhibit “Questionable Issue: Currency of the Holocaust” will be on display in the Houston Harte University Center Art Gallery. It will be open for free public viewing weekdays from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. until May 1.

The exhibit features authentic scrip from 12 concentration camps and the Warsaw Ghetto. Scrip was the “money” issued to Jewish prisoners at German concentration camps in exchange for their hard currency.

In reality, the scrip was worthless as there was nothing for prisoners to buy in the camps and it had no value outside the camps. The purpose of issuing the scrip was to create the fa�ade that prisoners were being paid for their labor and treated well. Many of the scrip pieces in the display are extremely rare, like the one from the Natzweiler camp in France that is the only known piece in the world.

The exhibit is presented courtesy of the Holocaust Museum Houston, which is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the six million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors’ legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, the museum teaches the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy.

April events will continue with a program featuring three Holocaust survivors at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, in the ASU Junell Center.

Open free to the public, the program will begin with an overview of the Holocaust by Dr. Gail Wallen, director of Holocaust Services, Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Southern Arizona. After Wallen’s talk, Wanda Wolosky, Walter Feiger and Lilly Brull will offer their first-hand accounts of the Nazi terrors they endured. Their presentations will be followed by a reception.

Wolosky survived the Warsaw Ghetto, where Nazis crowded into a three-square-mile section of the Polish city some 445,000 Jews in a virtual concentration camp. She risked execution to scavenge for food at night, just to survive.

Feiger, also from Poland and the only survivor from his family, was put into the ghettos before being moved to labor and concentration camps, such as Gross Rozen and Mathausen. He remained in captivity from September of 1939 until May of 1945.

Brull, a native of Antwerp, Belgium, was 10 years old when the Germans invaded her homeland in 1940. She and her family escaped Belgium on foot and spent a year evading the Germans in France before they were able to escape on a ship to Martinique in 1941.

The ASU program will come within days of the 64th anniversary of the liberation of the Buchenwald and Belsen concentration camps when the world began to fully understand the magnitude of Nazi Germany’s atrocities against civilians.

On Thursday, April 23, ASU will host a third event that includes a viewing of the documentary film, “The Monster Among Us,” about the rise of anti-Semitism in modern Europe, followed by a panel discussion. Activities will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the University Center’s C.J. Davidson Conference Center and are open free to the public.

“The Monster Among Us” debuted in April 2008 at the AFI Dallas International Film Festival and chronicles the work of filmmakers Allen and Cynthia Salzman Mondell as they take a closer look at the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe. It tracks how anti-Semitism has surfaced on university campuses, in the media, on the streets, at political demonstrations, on the Internet and in seemingly innocent social situations in six European countries.

On the discussion panel, former San Angelo resident Barbara Rosenberg will represent the Jewish faith, local minister Rev. Martin Barnes will represent Christianity and Ara Rahman will speak for the Muslim religion. ASU history professor Dr. Charles Endress will also be on the panel, which will be moderated by Dr. Shirley Eoff of the ASU history faculty.

The month of events is sponsored by ASU, Goodfellow Air Force Base, the ASU University Center Program Council, the ASU Center for Multicultural and Community Relations, the Phi Alpha Theta history honor society, the West Texas Collection, Friends of the Porter Henderson Library and Kempner Capital Management Inc.

For more information on any of the events, call 942-2164.