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The second phase of the project, "An Interrupted Childhood," showcases the stories of Polish Minnesotans who endured the horrors of World War II, including forced labor in the Third Reich and the Soviet Union, deportation to Siberia, service as a Polish Army Cadet, survival of the Volhynia Massacre, and bearing witness to the Holocaust. The project places these personal stories within the broader historical context of World War II.

An Interrupted Childhood - Polish WWII Survivors in Minnesota exhibition premiered at the Minnesota State Capitol on September 3, 2022. It later traveled to the majestic Landmark Center in St. Paul and featured a remarkable violin concert by Adam Han-Gorski during its opening on March 5, 2023. On November 13, 2023, the exhibition traveled to the Iversen Center of the University of St. Thomas, where the Consul General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, Pawel Zyzak, honored the opening. The next stop is at the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport from September 1, 2024-September 1, 2025. MPMS conducted multiple virtual openings for both exhibitions in collaboration with various organizations, such as the Landmark Center https://www.landmarkcenter.org/museums-and-exhibits/.

"In the Kalejdoskop project, we attempt to connect historical facts and events with narratives to document how the events played on the human scale and describe the frame of reference to a particular place and time.

The stories of WWII survivors need to be preserved as some of these individuals have rarely spoken publicly about their experiences. The narratives of Polish WWII survivors teach us lessons of survival, growth, and resilience that are truly humbling and inspiring." - Dr. Katarzyna Litak, President of MPMS. 

The Kalejdoskop project combines oral history interviews with documentary photography. Dr. Katarzyna Litak, the project manager, exhibitions curator, and graphic designer, conducted the interviews.

Documentary photographer Grzegorz Litynski was contracted to do the visual part of this project phase. www.litynski.com

The project has received grant support from the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago, the Minnesota Historical Society, the Metro Regional Arts Council, and the Minnesota State Arts Board. We also have partnered with the Landmark Center, Ramsey County Historical Society, East Side Freedom Library, Roseville Public Library, and the University of St. Thomas and Kowalski's Market.

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