July 05, 2017
WASHINGTON, DC—Thanks to the generosity of more than 4,500 people from around the United States and the world, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum exceeded its $250,000 goal for its first-ever Kickstarter campaign, “Save Their Stories: The Undiscovered Diaries of the Holocaust.” The campaign will make possible the cataloging and digitization of more than 200 diaries in the Museum’s collection, as well as translating three of them into English. The Museum is now launching a Kickstarter stretch goal of $50,000 to translate 10 more diaries into English.
“The backers of this campaign are helping to make the voices of the survivors and victims of the Holocaust heard,” said Dana Weinstein, the Museum’s director of membership and new audience engagement who is leading the effort. “In a time of increasing antisemitism and Holocaust denial, this project couldn’t be more urgent, and we are incredibly grateful for the overwhelming response.”
Diaries reveal some of the most intimate, heart-wrenching accounts of the Holocaust. They record in real time the feelings of loss, fear, and sometimes, hope of those facing extraordinary peril. These testimonies convey an immediacy in a way that other archival documentation often lacks. Diaries are also important teaching and scholarly tools allowing historians, educators, and students to understand the human cost of genocide.
The 31-day campaign was launched on June 12, the birthday of the most famous diarist of the Holocaust, Anne Frank. People can follow the project on social media at #savetheirstories.
“We have until 1:00 a.m. Eastern Time on Thursday, July 13, to reach our stretch goal,” continued Weinstein. “People from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Israel, and elsewhere showed their commitment to making sure these stories are available to anyone, anywhere in the world. We hope more will join them.”
Kickstarter has enabled the funding of more than 126,000 creative projects with the support of more than 13 million backers pledging more than $3 billion since it began in 2009.
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires leaders and citizens worldwide to confront hate, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit ushmm.org.View All Museum News Releases