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AP PHOTOS: Drawings by children in Nazi camp speak of dreams

January 26, 2019
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A visitor looks at the collection of drawings at the Jewish Museum in Prague, Czech Republic, Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019, made by Jewish children who passed through the Terezin Ghetto during WWII. A unique collection of some 4,500 drawings by children who were interned at the Theresienstadt concentration camp during the Holocaust still attracts attention even after 75 years since their creation. The drawings depict the everyday life as well hopes and dreams of returning home. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

PRAGUE (AP) — A unique collection of some 4,500 drawings by children who were interned at the Theresienstadt concentration camp during the Holocaust still attracts attention, 75 years since their creation.

Amid brutal conditions at the ghetto, the children made them during secret art classes led by artist Friedl Dicker-Brandeis, mostly in 1943-44.

The drawings depict the everyday life as well hopes and dreams of returning home, helping the children cope with the cruel reality.

They survived thanks to Dicker-Brandeis, who hid them in two pieces of baggage in Theresienstadt before her deportation to a death camp.

They belong to Prague’s Jewish museum and are on display in the Pinkas Synagogue.

Visitor Alexandra Diffey from Britain said: “It’s very, very moving. It is interesting. I’ve been thinking as I was walking around because my father was in a concentration camp, so it sort of hits home how it was for the Jews. I just think young people should really come here and see for themselves and maybe learn something.”

Some 35,000 victims died in Theresienstadt, also known as Terezin, during the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia. Some 87,000 others were transported from Terezin to Auschwitz and other Nazi death camps where most of them perished.