Walks and virtual walks

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photo: Agnieszka Wanat


1.  Impression about the Northern District in 1809 steps

A walk following the route between the POLIN Museum of the History of the Polish Jews and the Jewish Historical Institute. The Northern District, on whose ashes, burned bricks and rubble the socrealist Muranów district emerged after the war, is one of the most history-rich places in contemporary Warsaw. This district – with its heart located on the famous Nalewki street, but also beyond – was the centre of Jewish life, culture and trade in the interwar period. During the German occupation, the Greater Ghetto, which had seen the battles of the 1943 Uprising, was located here. The walk will recall the pre-WWII history of the district as well as the final chapter of the existence of the place and its inhabitants

2. janusz Korczak’s Warsaw

Doctor Janusz Korczak, a visionary, a writer, a dedicated educator has been inspiring people in Poland and around the world, also today. Korczak was travelling the world in his lifetime, he had visited France, Germany, England, Palestine, but most of all, he loved the city where he was born – Warsaw. In his „Diary”, he wrote: „Warsaw is mine, and I am hers”. His life became entwined with the city on the Vistula; he had remained faithful to the place, as he did to the orphans he cared for, until his death in the memorable Summer of 1942.

3. Discovering the Jewish Praga

The history of Jews in the Praga district is one of the most intriguing, albeit lesser known, themes of the legacy of Jewish settlement. Many buildings which served the Jewish community have remained in Praga until present day: the Jewish Academic Youth House at Sierakowskiego street, the mikveh at Kłopotowskiego street, Michał Bergson’s Care House at Jagiellońska street (today the Bajka theatre). Discovering the history of places related to the Jewish history in Praga can shed a new light on this beautiful, mysterious, even if sometimes run-down district.

4.  The Jewish cemetery at Okopowa street

The cemetery at Okopowa street, established in 1806, is the second largest Jewish cemetery in Poland, and one of few remaining witnesses to the centuries of history of the Jewish community in Warsaw. During the walk, we will see various types of gravestones – matzevot, ohels, obelisks, we will look at ornaments and learn about their symbolic meaning. During the walk, we will pay a visit to the graves of Ber Sonnenberg, Ludwik Zamenhof, Adam Czerniaków, Marek Edelman and others.

5.  The unremovable traces of the Warsaw Ghetto

The walk will tell the story of the Warsaw Ghetto, the daily problems of people who were living there, and the tragic end of the Warsaw Jewish community. We will see the remaining squares, streets, houses, and what can’t be seen anymore — we will see on photographs or imagine. Each stage of the walk tells the story of people imprisoned in the closed district, their daily struggles, decisions and choices. Participants of the walk will learn about methods of smuggling food into the ghetto, which plays were staged at the Femina Theatre, and why there were three Roman Catholic churches in the Jewish district.

6. Warsaw in the eyes of Emanuel Ringelblum – creator of the Underground Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto

Emanuel Ringelblum was born in Buchach and spent his childhood and youth in Galicia, but he dedicated most of his life to Warsaw. Krakowskie Przedmieście, Długa, Tłomackie, Leszno, Grójecka, Dzielna and Nowolipki – these are only a few streets related to the Warsaw chapter of the biography of Ringelblum and his family. During the walk, we will tell the story about Warsaw addresses of the creator of the Underground Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto, his political views, social activity, and his work as a historian and a teacher.

7. Following the traces of Perec in Warsaw

When Perec left his hometown of Zamość for Warsaw in 1889, nobody yet assumed that he would become one of the most outstanding writers of Yiddish literature and that he would spark a new era in the history of Polish Jews. What was the link between this fascinating writer and Franz Kafka? Why was he incarcerated in the Warsaw Citadel, the Tsarist prison? What did he do for 25 years in the Jewish Religious Community of Warsaw? What was the secret of his son Lucjan? We will answer these questions, and more, during our walk. We will recall the fascinating biography of this writer, his friends and loved ones, as well as the lesser-known history of the streets connected to him. On the way, we will share many memories, anecdotes, book and press quotes. We’ll meet at the corner of Żelazna and Pereca streets.

8. Historians, writers and a postman – members of the secret Oneg Shabbat group in the space of the Warsaw Ghetto

During the walk, we will learn about the biographies of the members of the Oneg Shabbat group – creators of the Underground Archive of the Warsaw Ghetto. The space of the ghetto was as dangerous and oppressive as for the remaining ca. half a million Jews imprisoned there. This is why the activity of the group – meticulous and versatile documentation of the life of Jews under the German occupation, as well as of the Holocaust – was one of the most outstanding acts of civil and intellectual resistance. During the walk, we will present not only the biographies of Oneg Shabbat members, but also places important for the work of the group.

9. Following the traces of Irena Sendler

The life of Irena Sendler, the most famous Polish Righteous Among The Nations, evades simple descriptions, and her personality and life decisions, especially their post-war reception, cause strong emotions. The educational walk will provide a chance to learn about her biography, to understand the sources of her moral stance and her motivations during rescuing the children from the Warsaw Ghetto. We will find out about places related to escapes from the ghetto and their dramatic circumstances, as well as about lesser known Irena Sendler’s associates.

10. Super-human medicine and its heroes – healthcare in the Warsaw Ghetto

During the walk in the former Warsaw Ghetto, we will visit places in which there were hospitals, outpatient clinics, pharmacies, and other institutions related to healthcare. We will learn about doctors, such as Anna Braude-Hellerowa or Emil Apfelbaum, as well as hospital workers, often known only by their first names, who provided help in the times of „super-human medicine”. We will learn about the ways which the typhus vaccine was delivered into the ghetto, who donated blood on the „aryan side”, and how the secret medical studies worked.

Availability of the offer

If you are interested in organizing an educational walk for school students, university students or seniors, please contact the JHI Education Department:

tel.: (0–22) 827 92 21 int. 102; e-mail: edukacja@jhi.pl.

The walks are organized for groups between 10 and 30 participants. Please make your reservation at least 14 days before the planned date.

A walk lasts between 90–120 minutes.

Other groups interested in organizing a walk are invited to visit the Plan a visit subpage.

Walks are organized from April 1 to September 30.

virtual walks

We would also like to invite you to our virtual walks.

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