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Yizkor book collection in the world, said
Judy Rosenzveig, Weiss' assistant.
Located in a special aisle separated by
locked glass doors, these limited edition
books written about myriad Jewish com-
munities exterminated during the
Holocaust were generally put together by
survivors and for survivors, according to
Rosenzveig, whose father is HMC
founder and executive director Rabbi
"They wrote the history of the town
and the anti-Semitic incidents that hap-
pened long before the Holocaust," she
hen the Holocaust
Memorial Center first
opened in West
Bloomfield in 1984, its
library started with a small group of
books donated by Philip Slomovitz,
then-publisher of the Jewish News. The
books were stored in the Jewish
Community Center basement, said Feiga
Weiss, HMC librarian.
As we organized, purchased new
books and catalogued them,
the shelves filled up to the
point where we stored books
in various locations," she
The total neared 15,000
volumes and included rare
books that had to be kept in
archival boxes stored in "var-
ious cubbyholes." Other
books were stacked on the
The problem has always
been accessing them and
b a researcher or
teacher the room to study,
"We asked them [teach-
ers] to come with very spe-
Judy Rosenzveig in the HMC libraiy
cific requests and take care
of each one individually,"
she said. "The librarians had complete
access to all the information they need-
said. "Sometimes, the books, mainly
ed," she said. "It was the user, unfortu-
written in Yiddish or Hebrew, have regis-
nately, who didn't have the room to sit
ters of who died and who survived the
down and have the time to do what they
have to do."
The Yizkor collection is so rare and
The new library, located on the second valuable that only one book can be read
floor of the HMO's new home on
at a time, she said. All of the books must
Orchard Lake Road in Farmington Hills,
be used within the comfortable library
is four times the size of the previous
and cannot be checked out. New
library and includes reading areas, access
Holocaust-related books arrive constantly
to audio-visual materials such as film
and are duly catalogued and placed in
footage and oral histories and a rare book the collection.
section located in a special climate-con-
What started with the Slomovitz dona-
tion has become a real library with room
The library also boasts the third largest to read, Rosenzveig said. Li
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