New Zealand History

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Unpacking the Suitcase

October 6th, 2020


When German-Jewish refugees arrived in New Zealand in the 1930s fleeing Hitler’s Europe, they brought everything they could from their former homes: furniture, luggage, personal documents, musical instruments, artwork, books, silverware, linen, a typewriter. Some of these humble and remarkable domestic objects survive today, a few in public heritage collections; most in the private family homes of descendants.

But while the Jewish refugee migration story is well known, less so is the story of those objects. In this talk, Louisa Hormann shares findings from a research project exploring the relationships between Holocaust survivor refugee families, their descendants, and the material objects they have inherited.

These monthly Public History Talks are a collaboration between the National Library of New Zealand and the Ministry for Culture and Heritage.

Recorded live at the National Library of New Zealand, 7 October 2020.


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