Thursday, February 15, 2007

940.53 Holocaust Personal Histories: Primary Sources

I had not been on the United States Holocaust Museum site in awhile and through some random surfing for various things came across this online exhibit. Here are first-person accounts of various parts of that horrific point of time in history...written by the people who lived them, witnessed them, and survived them. The passing of time has not dimmed the details, but has increased the emotional stake in "studying history." It would be very difficult to read and experience these accounts and not take away something more than just plain ol' facts.

At least for me.

The emphasis in recent years on using primary sources in the the study of history allows the learner (whether student or life-long) to experience it almost in the same manner as if it were occurring at the moment.

The introduction of technology into this process of "preserving" and "presenting" history's important moments is only a good thing...a wonderful thing. I have not had the privilege of speaking with more than a handful of people involved in any part of the Holocaust. My father was a member of the military who took part in the liberation of some of the camps...he spoke of his involvement only once to me.

To have access to all of these personal stories...recorded by the people who lived them...and available to me at virtually any time I want them... is priceless.

For anyone who questions the value of the Internet, I will surely point to this site and countless others like it as proof that the Internet is a good thing.

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