Archival Odyssey: Edie (Oelsner) Shafer and the Shanghai Ghetto

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In an attempt to escape from Nazi persecution in Germany, the family of Edie (Oelsner) Shafer fled to Japanese-occupied Shanghai in 1939, the only place they could go without a visa. The family ultimately ended up in the United States, but not before facing nine years of legal obstacles in order to immigrate successfully.

Based on their work with a rich collection of the family’s documents held by Jewish Museum Milwaukee, specialists in twentieth-century European history Ben Nestor and Mike Pulido, will discuss just how these archival materials helped them reconstruct this journey, and the perils the family faced before ultimately making it to the United States. The talk will also consider the larger historical themes touched on by the Oelsners’ experience as well as the lingering questions that this research inspired, but could only partially answer.

Kosher box lunches are available or feel free to bring your own delicious lunch. If you would like to order lunch, please choose from the following options (each selection comes with chips, pickle and coleslaw):

  • Roast Beef Sandwich   $12.00
  • Turkey Sandwich           $12.00
  • Tuna Salad Sandwich  $12.00
  • Vegetarian Sandwich   $10.00

Museum Members $3 | Non-members $7

Offered in connection with Stitching Histories From the Holocaust, an exhibit on display at the Jewish Museum Milwaukee, April 8 – September 16, 2018.

Jewish Museum Milwaukee

11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Museum Members $3 | Non-members $7

Open To Public


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