Why We Missed Handworks

Rosengarten Stolpersteine on Bahnhofstrasse in Themar, Germany

Rosengarten Stolpersteine on Bahnhofstrasse in Themar, Germany

The former Rosengarten home

The former Rosengarten home. You can see the dark spot on the sidewalk prepped for the stolpersteine installation.

It sounds like Handworks was a great success — Congratulations to all!

We’re sorry we missed out on all the fun, but as mentioned in an earlier post, we had a scheduling conflict. The story starts a couple years ago (well, our part of the story — the real story starts in 1939 when Linda’s father fled the Nazis) and I wrote about it briefly here. Instead of Amana, Iowa, we found ourselves once again in Themar, Germany, this time for the placing of Stolpersteine in front of the house where Linda’s father, Manfred, and the Rosengarten family lived prior to their flight. Their journey took them to Shanghai, China, the only haven for refugees at that time. But that’s another story altogether.

The Stolpersteine project is the work of Gunter Demnig, an artist and social activist. He started with his first installation in 1997 and sometime next month will have placed 40,000 of these simple, elegant memorials to victims of the Holocaust. His Stolpersteine have been installed in several countries in Europe, making the project the world’s largest memorial. He places or supervises the placement of each stone and was there in Themar to install these four.

Artist Gunter Demnig at work

Artist Gunter Demnig at work

Each stolperstein replaces a cobblestone in the sidewalk in front of the residence

Each stolperstein replaces a cobblestone in the sidewalk in front of the residence

An elegant memorial

An elegant memorial

We were warmly received by the city of Themar, Burgermeister Hubert Bose and Themar Trifft Europa (Themar Meets Europe). My thanks to all of our new friends there for so graciously embracing this project.

About Ron Hock

Owner of HOCK TOOLS (.com) and author of "The Perfect Edge, the Ultimate Guide to Sharpening for Woodworkers"
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2 Responses to Why We Missed Handworks

  1. George Lough says:

    There will be many more conventions, You have but one family. With the grace of God to families will ever have to go through another holocaust. You made the right choice and I for one applaud you for it.
    George

  2. Connell Jones says:

    My daughter is a scholar of German Language and Literature teaching at Whitman College. She worked with Demnig post graduation. I am glad to see that your family is honored by his significant work and you could be there for the memorial.

    We must never forget, but even more, must learn to accept all diversity and honor it!

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