Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Israel, has recognized twenty- six thousand Righteous Among the Nations, non-Jews who placed their own lives at risk saving Jews during the Holocaust. Among this number are thirty-six courageous diplomats who risked their lives and their careers rescuing Jews who were attempting to escape the Nazi juggernaut. The actions of these individuals occurred against the backdrop of a free world doing little to save Jews or ameliorate their plight. Indeed, most diplomats hewed to the policies set by their respective governments and did nothing to help Jews. "Only very few felt that extraordinary times required extraordinary action and were willing to act against their governments' policies to save Jews. This small minority mustered the necessary courage to recognize the significance and consequences of blindly following procedures. When faced with the plight of the Jews, they decided that although they were of a different nationality and religion, they were unable to continue with their professional routine, and hence chose to defy their superiors and if necessary, suffer the consequences." (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs" Beyond Duty Exhibition January 25 2018.)
This collection contains Visas and other documents-Letters of Protection, Schutzpasses, etc., signed by Righteous Diplomats. Each document saved the life of the bearer.
--Michael D. Bulmash, K1966
Browse the Bulmash Family Holocaust Collection.
Front: Man, looking at camera, holds a photograph of a large family while wife at his side looks to Back: Handwritten information, 'Sender Wajzman and wife. Mindelle. Pic is all his relatives - only he survived holocaust, of the whole group. T. Robb 7-10-81'. 'Date Used JUL 12 1981' hand stamp below handwriting.
Front: White card with printed photograph of an older woman in black sitting and looking at the camera. A chest with teacups and photos resting on top of it is behind her. Beneath the photograph is an autograph in blue ink. Back: Pencil writing on top.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Irena Sendler (Sendlerova), also known as Jolanta, was a Polish Roman Catholic nurse/social worker who worked in the Polish Underground during World War II. She was the head of the chidlren's section of Zegotat in German-occupied Warsaw. She was able, with the help of other members of Zegota, to smugle 2500 children out of the Warsaw Ghetto and secure false identity papers and housing for them, thus saving their lives. On strips of paper hidden in a jar, she wrote their birth names and their new names. Arrested and tortured by the Gestapo in 1943, she refused to divulge the names of her comrades or those of her rescued children. She was sentenced to death by firing squad, but saved by Zegota by bribing the German guards. She lived in hiding yet continued her efforts to help the children. She was honored by Yad Vashem as one of the Polish Righteous Among Nations. Pope John Paul II also praised her efforts. The recipient of many awards, the Polish Government presented her as a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007.
Front: Illustration of Gino Bartali in yellow shirt titled, "Sport Kings Gum."Back: Information printed in green.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Gino Bartali was a much beloved champion cyclist who had won the Giro d'Italia three times and the Tour de France on two occasions. A devout Catholic with strong moral convictions, he risked his life to help Jews living in Italy. A messenger in the military, he transported identity documents for Jews, as well as distributed money from a Swiss bank account to Jews in hiding in Florence. He hid his friend Giacomo Goldenberg and his family in his own apartment, and then in a nearby basement. For his selfless heroism he was declared Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem in Israel in 2010.
Black and white photograph of a dower-looking man in glasses, with his dark hair slicked back, wearing a three-piece suit and tie. The tie has a pearl pin in it, and is askew. Back: Pasted sticker naming Duckwitz a West German personality. Beneath a black handstamp giving copyright to Camera Press.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Press photograph of George F. Duckwitz (1904-1973). Duckwitz had been a German businessman who joined the Nazi Party in 1932. He was eventually assigned to the German embassy in Copenhagen, Denmark, as an attaché. After 1942 Duckwitz worked with Werner Best, the Gestapo leader in Copenhagen. The latter informed Duckwitz about an intended roundup of Danish Jews to occur on October 1, 1943. After a failed attempt to stop the deportations through official channels in Berlin, Duckwtiz flew to Sweden and prevailed upon the Prime Minister in Stockholm to receive Danish Jewish refugees. Back in Denmark Duckwtiz was able to inform--through an intermediary--the chief Rabbi of the Danish Jewish community about the intended deportations. Word spread and resulted in sympathetic Danes organizing the escape of over 7000 Jews in boats to Sweden under the nose of the Nazis. At great personal risk to himself, in giving advance warning to the Jewish community of Denmark about the planned deportaitons of Jews, Duckwitz enabled the people of Denmark to help most of its Jews escape in boats to Sweden. He was named Righteous Among Nations by Yad Vashem in 1971 for his efforts on behalf of Jews.
Signed Photograph of Nickolas Winton, savior of 669 Jewish children in the Czechoslovakian Kindertransport, Holding a Child
Matted black and white photograph of Nicky Winton holding a child with his signature beneath.
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Nicholas Winton had personally saved 669 Czechoslovakian children from the Nazi scourge by finding homes for them in England. Many of their parents were to be murdered at Auschwitz.For his extraordinary work on the Czechoslovakian Kindertransport he received numerous honors, including a knighthood.
Woman in white, man in suit looking straight at camera
Information Provided by Michael D. Bulmash: Second generation press photograph of Oskar Schindler, the German businessman who saved the lives of more than a thousand Polish-Jewish refugees during the Holocaust by employing them in his factories.