Chicago Public Library Opens “Courage to Remember” Exhibition at Harold Washington Library Center

Critically acclaimed Holocaust exhibit from the Simon Wiesenthal Center remembers victims and provides hope to future generations

Today, Chicago Public Library Commissioner Brian Bannon joined representatives of the Simon Wiesenthal Center to cut the ribbon on the ‘Courage to Remember’ exhibition at Harold Washington Library Center. The exhibit will be on display from March 1 to May 31 in the Grand Promenade on the north side of the 3rd floor.

“We are dedicated to being an institution that acts as a cultural artery, providing access to art and history, and encouraging civic dialogue,” said Commissioner Bannon. “This exhibit allows patrons to remember, reflect and pay tribute to a deeply consequential time in our history.”

This traveling exhibit has won critical acclaim around the world and it tells the story of the Holocaust from 1933-1945. This exhibit features a powerful 40-panel visual narrative of the Holocaust with a series of full-color posters. Created in 1988 by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, it offers 200 photos that take the viewer chronologically through the horrors of the Nazis' systematic murder of more than 6 million Jews and millions of others.

“The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s ‘Courage to Remember’ Exhibition is a powerful reminder of the evil that took place during the Holocaust, and a reminder of the capacity of the human spirit to confront it,” said Mayor Emanuel. “As we stand together in solemn remembrance, we must also commit to standing up to anti-Semitism here at home and around the world. It is our responsibility to teach our children about what happened in the past and encourage new generations of forward-thinkers to reflect on those who suffered those unspeakable atrocities so that it never happens again in the future.”

The exhibit has traveled throughout the United States and to more than 20 other countries and has been seen by 4 million-plus people. The three-month display at Harold Washington will be the longest run for this exhibit in its history.

“We are honored to be offering free access to this acclaimed exhibition, offering an opportunity for remembrance and tolerance to surviving generations,” said Alison Pure-Slovin, Midwest Regional Director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. “We must have the courage to remember the atrocities of the Holocaust so as to prevent crimes of hatred and persecution from happening again.”

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is a global human rights organization researching the Holocaust and hate in a historic and contemporary context. The Center confronts anti-Semitism, hate and terrorism, promotes human rights and dignity, and teaches the lessons of the Holocaust for future generations.

CPL features ongoing exhibits throughout the year that are always free and open to the public.

About Chicago Public Library

Since 1873, Chicago Public Library (CPL) has encouraged lifelong learning by welcoming all people and offering equal access to information, entertainment and knowledge through innovative services and programs, as well as cutting-edge technology. Through its 80 locations, the Library provides free access to a rich collection of materials, both physical and digital, and presents the highest quality author discussions, exhibits and programs for children, teens and adults. CPL received the Social Innovator Award from Chicago Innovation Awards; won a National Medal for Library Services from the Institute for Museum and Library Services; was named the first ever winner of the National Summer Learning Association’s Founder’s Award in recognition of its Summer Learning Challenge; and was ranked number one in the U.S., and third in the world by an international study of major urban libraries conducted by the Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf in Germany. For more information, please call (312) 747-4050 or visit To follow CPL on social media, visit us on Twitter (@chipublib) or Facebook (Chicago Public Library).