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First Coast Connect: A Month-Long Holocaust Exhibit in Jacksonville

Public Domain

An exhibit telling the story of Holocaust victim Anne Frank opens Friday at Jacksonville’s Museum of Science and History.

The exhibit is the centerpiece of a community-wide, month-long initiative called “Voices of Hope,” focusing on the dangers of intolerance and discrimination.

Museum curator Paul Bourcier said the exhibit focuses on issues that are relevant today.

“How many stories have we heard in the news, in the recent past, globally about oppression, human rights violations, xenophobia, ethnic cleansing, terrorism, racial profiling, hate crimes, and other forms of social injustice?” he said on WJCT’s First Coast Connect Wednesday.

Alongside the exhibit at MOSH, several organizations will be putting on more than 40 programs, including plays, a symphony performance played on violins restored after the Holocaust, and panel discussions with filmmakers, journalists and academic researchers.

Words and ideas from Anne Frank and Martin Luther King, Jr. are brought together in the play “Letters From Anne and Martin.” Born in the same year but in different parts of the world, they shared the same challenges of oppression and the same desire to live in a world without discrimination. Separate showings will be held on 8 p.m. Saturday at the Ritz Theater & Museum, and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Main Public Library. The following discussions geared for adults and teens. Registration is required.

The symphony “Violins for Hope” will be played on 16 instruments recovered from the Holocaust. Some were played by Jewish prisoners in concentration camps and others by the Klezmer musical culture, or the traditional style of Jewish music. The show is Jan. 28 and a panel — “Violins of Hope: Understanding the Vision” — will feature the Israeli violin restorer Amnon Weinstein.

The University of North Florida is also offering two classes for the spring semester on The Holocaust and The History of Nazi Germany. They explore issues regarding the politics and major causes of it.

The exhibit runs until Feb. 12, and admission at MOSH is free.

WJCT is a partner in the “Voices of Hope” initiative, with a panel discussion Feb. 9 on a secret escape tunnel Jews used during the Holocaust.

For more information, visit

Photo: "Anne Frank School Photo" by an unknown photographer used under public domain.

Intern Serena Summerfield can be reached at, 904-358-6317, or on Twitter @sumserfield