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The book smugglers : partisans, poets, and the race to save Jewish treasures from the Nazis

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The book smugglers : partisans, poets, and the race to save Jewish treasures from the Nazis
Call No: 947.93 F53b

Call Number947.93 F53b
Dates[2017]; ©2017
Statement of ResponsibilityDavid E. Fishman.
Creators & ContributorsFishman, David E. (author)
Kaczerginski, Szmerke (subject)
Summary"The Book Smugglers is the nearly unbelievable story of ghetto residents who rescued thousands of rare books and manuscripts—first from the Nazis and then from the Soviets—by hiding them on their bodies, burying them in bunkers, and smuggling them across borders. It is a tale of heroism and resistance, of friendship and romance, and of unwavering devotion—including the readiness to risk one’s lifeto literature and art... Based on Jewish, German, and Soviet documents, including diaries, letters, memoirs, and the author’s interviews with several of the story’s participants, The Book Smugglers chronicles the daring activities of a group of poets turned partisans and scholars turned smugglers in Vilna, 'The Jerusalem of Lithuania.'” Publisher
ContentsPart one. Before the war
  • Shmerke—the life of the party
  • The city of the book
Part two. Under German occupation
  • The first assault
  • Intellectuals in Hell
  • A haven for books and people
    • A rescued gem: the record book of the Vilna Gaon's synagogue
  • Accomplices or saviors?
  • The Nazi, the Bard, and the teacher
  • Ponar for books
  • The paper brigade
  • The art of book smuggling
    • A rescued gem: Herzl's diary
  • The book and the sword
  • Slave-labor curators and scholars
  • From the ghetto to the forest
  • Death in Estonia
  • Miracle from Moscow
Part three. After the war
  • From under the ground
  • A museum like no other
    • A rescued gem: Sholem Aleichem's letters
  • Struggling under the Soviets
  • Tears in New York
  • The decision to leave
  • The art of book smuggling—again
  • Rachela's choice
  • The German discovery
  • Parting duties
    • A rescued gem: the bust of Tolstoy and other Russians
  • Wanderings: Poland and Prague
  • Paris
  • Return from Offenbach, or Kalmanovitch's prophecy
Part four. From liquidation to redemption
  • The path to liquidation
  • Later lives
  • Forty years in the wilderness
  • Grains of wheat
Physical Description xv, 322 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
Carrier Typevolume
PublisherLebanon, NH : ForeEdge
  • Includes bibliographical references (pages 261–309) and index
  • National Jewish Book Award, Holocaust category (2017)
RecognitionGifted in 2018 by Mark Dwor in memory of his mother's extended family killed on August 28, 1941 at Seta (Shat), Lithuania