13 April 2009

Michigan: Upper Peninsula Jewish history

The Beaumier Upper Peninsula Heritage Center will host a traveling exhibition - "Uneasy Years: Michigan Jewry During Depression and War" - through May 16, according to this story at NorthWindOnline.com.

Michigan State University originally organized the travelling exhibit which is appearing across the state.

"This exhibit looks at the whole context of Michigan, its communities, and their relationship with Jewish life and culture. There are community stories and personal stories that speak to the hardship, loss, and renewal of hope," said Julie Avery, curator of rural life and culture at Michigan State University Museum.
The exhibit focuses on Michigan's Jewish community from World War I through World War II. Avery said there are past assumptions that little was done to stop the mistreatment of Jews, but research uncovered communities all over Michigan that providing food and money to help them.

Beaumier Heritage Center director/curator Daniel Truckey said the exhibit is important because it extends Northern Michigan University's educational mission of embracing diversity.

"We have courses in Jewish history and the Holocaust, but only so many students will take these courses in their time at Northern. If we can expose more information about the past, we can expose students to things they might not have learned about," Truckey said.
The exhibit is a panel display with interpretative boards of photos, texts, and maps.

Truckey called it a fascinating display about the state's Jewish community of Michigan, and that the university wanted people to know there is a Jewish community in the Upper Peninsula.

Read more at the link above.

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