In the above video, you see how the Nuremburg Laws, signed in 1935 by Adolf Hitler, come to be on display at the National Archives, from October 6-18. I am running this as a tease for my upcoming blog post which will follow my visit to the National Archives to see this exhibit on opening day.
These laws were an important step to the eventual horror of the Holocaust. As Patton had the originals, facsimiles were used during the actual Nuremburg War Crime Trials, but they were the opening volley ushering in the evidence of Nazi horrors: medical experimentation, work camps and death camps.
Today the laws are referred to as the Nuremburg Laws, but in pre-war Germany the above section was entitled, “Gesetz zum Schutze der deutschen Blutes und der deutschen Ehre” or, in English, “law for the safeguard of German blood and honor.” In the above excerpt, Jews are forbidden from marrying citizens of German or German-related blood (and, any out-of-state marriages will be regarded as void in Germany), from having sexual intercourse with the same, from employing German women under the age of 45 years in the household and from raising the Reich- and national flag. Jews are protected by the state, however, should they wish to display Jewish colors. These laws are the gateway drug for the Nazi Holocaust.
If you click on this sentence, you can read the rest of the law in a .PDF of an English translation (it is provided by the National Archives, but the site does not explain how old this translation is or why it was drawn up).
The National Archives has a couple of other related events running at the same time the laws are displayed. A description follows, here:
FILM: Nuremberg: Its Lesson for Today
Wednesday, October 6, at 7 PM, William G. McGowan Theater
The Charles Guggenheim Center for the Documentary Film welcomes producer Sandra Schulberg, who will introduce the first complete 35mm picture and sound restoration of the U.S. Government’s 1948 film about the first Nuremberg trial—the International Military Tribunal. Nuremberg: Its Lesson For Today shows how the four allied prosecution teams—from the United States, Great Britain, France, and the Soviet Union—built their case against the top Nazi leaders. The original film was written and directed by Stuart Schulberg, and edited by Joseph Zigman, under Pare Lorentz, chief of Film/Theatre/Music at the U.S. War Department. It was completed by Schulberg in 1948, under Eric Pommer, chief of the Motion Picture Branch of U.S. Military Government in Berlin. Please note—viewer discretion is advised.(78 minutes)
BOOK TALK AND SIGNING: The Monuments Men
Wednesday, October 20, at 7 PM, William G. McGowan Theater
Beyond the familiar history lessons of World War II is an untold story of a Nazi plot to seize the world’s greatest cultural treasures—a plot thwarted by one tiny band of soldiers, detailed in The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History. The National Archives Experience, in partnership with the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library, welcomes author Robert Edsel, who will discuss a story that remains relevant as irreplaceable historical artifacts are still missing, and restoration, search, and discovery continue. A book signing will follow the program, and the book is available at a discount from the Archives Shop (202-357-5271) before and during the event.
The typical format is somewhat reversed this week as the shorter blog post is running today, while the lengthier, more in depth post will run at the end of the week. So, check back to see a lengthier discussion and commentary on this law. Follow me on Twitter, ETFranz, for updates about the visit to the National Archives and this exhibit!
For more information about the exhibit, please, visit the National Archives website: http://www.archives.gov/ (currently the first entry under “News and Events”).