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Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

Introducing Jewish Refugees Museum, Jewish Refugees Museum Guide, Jewish Refugees Museum Travel Guide
Article from official site of Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

From 1933 to 1941, Shanghai became a modern-day “Noah’s Ark” accepting around 30,000 Jewish refugees fleeing the Holocaust in Europe. In the “Designated Area for Stateless Refugees” in Tilanqiao area of Shanghai, about 20,000 Jewish refugees lived harmoniously with local citizens, overcoming numerous difficulties together. By the time the Second World War ended in 1945, most of the Jewish refugees had survived. Dr. David Kranzler, a noted Holocaust historian, called it the “Miracle of Shanghai” and commented that within the Jewry’s greatest tragedy, i.e. the Holocaust, there shone a few bright lights. Among the brightest of these is the Shanghai haven. In the "Tilanqiao Historic Area”, the original features of the Jewish settlement are still well preserved. They are the only typical historic traces of Jewish refugee life inside China during the Second World War.

Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum, located at 62 Changyang Road, Hongkou District, consists of three parts: the former site of Ohel Moshe Synagogue and two exhibition halls. Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum is an important component of the “Tilanqiao Historic Area” and serves as a witness commemorating the phase of history when the Jewish refugees lived in Shanghai.

I. The former site of Ohel Moshe Synagogue

The Ohel Moshe Synagogue is one of the only two synagogues in Shanghai built by Russian Jews where the Jewish refugees gathered for religious rites during the Second World War. In 2004, it was listed among the fourth set of architectural heritage treasures of Shanghai. Mr. Yitzhak Rabin, the former Israeli Prime Minister, commented during his visit to Shanghai, “To the people of Shanghai for unique humanitarian act of saving thousands of Jews during the Second World War, thanks in the name of the government of Israel.”

In March 2007, the People’s Government of Hongkou District budgeted special funds for a full renovation of the synagogue in accordance with the original architectural drawings found in the city archives. The former site of Ohel Moshe Synagogue has been restored to the same architectural style when it used as a synagogue in 1928. In addition, the interior structures have also been adjusted according to the drawings. The duplication of the architectural drawing is shown on the first floor. A sign-in machine, a database of the Jewish refugees and video programs are available on the third floor with temporary exhibits.

II. No.2 Exhibition Hall

It was completed at the end of 2007. Over 140 photos are displayed and a multi-screen display system is the first of its kind to be used in Shanghai. The short film about the refugees living in Shanghai together with an oil painting and sculptures make that phase of history come alive. In addition, duplication of a refugee’s passport, the Shanghai Jewish Chronicle, and a large stone tablet engraved with Rabin’s inscription are also on display. The joint efforts of historians and artists makes visitors linger on without any thought of leaving.

III. No.3 Exhibition Hall

It was completed in May of 2008 and has novel exhibitions from time to time.

Quick Facts on Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

• Name: Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum
• Location: 62 Changyang Road, Hongkou District
• Phone: +86-21-65126669
• Dates: 1927
• Best Time to Visit: All year
• Recommended Time for a Visit: 2 Hours
• Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00
• Admission Fee: CNY 50

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