Happy Birthday, Anne

This post by Katie Adams, museum volunteer

I remember the first time I heard of Anne Frank. I was in seventh grade, and we were required to read her diary as part of our study on the Holocaust. My introduction was of the commonest variety–school children around the world read her diary, many when they are around 12-13 years old. I’m certain that this has to do with making the events and victims of the Holocaust real and relatable, and in my case, this goal was achieved. I was never the same after meeting Anne, or learning about the millions of lives lost in the Holocaust.

After learning about Anne’s life and times, I felt the need to be a better, kinder person, to know what was happening in the world around me, and to be prepared to stand up against injustice whenever I could. I took to heart Anne’s feelings that people were mostly good, and have done my best to believe so in a world that would tell me otherwise.

When I heard that we would be collecting copies of Anne’s diary to help schools in need share Anne’s story and legacy, I was beyond thrilled. How many lives could be positively impacted because of Anne’s words? How many students would have an opportunity to learn from Anne, and to learn to love her? Today, as we celebrate her birthday, I am excited and encouraged by the thought that at this time next year, a whole new group of students will have met Anne for the very first time, and that our museum will have played a role, thanks to the countless visitors and friends who care enough about making the world a better place to donate a copy of Anne’s diary.

Favorite Places: The Garden of Remembrance and Tolerance

Garden of Remembrance and Tolerance


Last November, the Museum held a dedication ceremony for our new Garden of Remembrance and Tolerance. After a long hot summer of planning, planting, and watering, everything was in place. The garden was the Eagle Scout project of local student Brandon Ryan, and was certainly a labor of love–due to the hot summer, all the plants had to be watered every day. But before the plants could be planted, and the sculpture installed, Brandon had to start from scratch. The ground on which the garden now sits was once part of our parking lot. Brandon coordinated and participated in all aspects of the project, from breaking ground to the finishing touches.

The focal point of the garden, the sculpture, was designed by Brandon’s fellow students at the Greenhill School, Austin and Bronsin Ablon. On the meaning of the piece, Austin said, “We invite you to discover your own meaning about the sculpture but through building the memorial we have developed a sort of story of what the piece depicts. At first we had the idea to include the metal posts in the walls to represent the concentration camps as cold and hard jails. As we continued building the memorial we discovered more and more about what it meant to us. Its name, ‘Coming Together,’ embodies what happens with the sculpture when it rains. The rain drops, interrupted from their free fall paths, are collected and guided down the path until they all fall into the center star of David that sits bellow. In that action, they “come together” as one. We believe that this idea represents what happened to the Jewish people during the holocaust. Just like the rain drops, their daily lives were interrupted, they were gathered together and forced into trains, and then into concentration camps. But after all of that happened, even though they had suffered horribly, the survivors came together as the Jewish people, stronger and united – just like the rain drops.”

The Garden of Remembrance and Tolerance is one of our favorite places because it stands as a physical reminder to all who pass by that the lessons of the Holocaust are not to be forgotten. It is a special corner of growth and renewal in the center of an area surrounded by concrete and train tracks.

Bullying: What Can You Do?

Bullying is everywhere in the news today. From tragic stories of suicide to triumphant tales of kids who have overcome the challenges bullies provide, this is definitely an issue worth talking about. At the Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance, we know that bullying is just the first link in a chain of negative actions that can lead to the unthinkable.

If you or your child is a victim of bullying, you know that finding a solution isn’t always easy. Here are some resources that can help:


It is so important that we all become Upstanders whenever we see bullying around us. Together, we can keep bullying from becoming something more sinister.

Every Child Has a Name: Childhood Memory Project

Remember when you were a child? They toys you loved, the games you played? In our newest exhibit, Every Child Has a Name, we have a selection of children’s artifacts–toys, drawings, and other things that belonged to the children of the Holocaust. While some of the artifacts are reproductions of the originals, the reminder that children were there to witness the horrible acts of that time is very real.

This is a reproduction of a game similar to Monopoly--except for the fact that the setting is a Jewish ghetto.

As part of this exhibit, we are creating a virtual gallery on Facebook. If you or someone you know has any toys or children’s artifacts from the WWII period, especially from Europe, you can be part of this new venture. All you need to do is head over to our Facebook page (http://facebook.com/dhmcet) and post a picture of the artifact, along with a brief history. We would love to know where the toy is from, who it belonged to, etc. This community-created project will give all of our supporters a chance to share their histories and to learn about the WWII era in a new way that is far more interesting  and personal than what you could find in the pages of a book.

Please help us honor the memory of the children of the Holocaust, and the children of WWII, by sharing your photographs and memories if you can. If you do not have an artifact to share, you can still share a memory, story, or your thoughts!