The border between remembering and forgetting: El Paso, Texas, and the Holocaust
This thesis examines the development of collective memory regarding the Holocaust in El Paso, Texas. The local chapter of the National Council of Jewish Women aided refugees fleeing Nazi Germany and the rest of the European continent prior to the entrance of the United States into the war and the implementation of the Final Solution. After the war, a small group of Holocaust survivors permanently made El Paso their home. In the 1980s, one particular Holocaust survivor began collecting Holocaust-era artifacts which eventually grew into the El Paso Holocaust Museum and Study Center. In many ways, the memory of the Holocaust as a global event has overshadowed the local history of El Paso during the same period, despite the fact that Jewish women in the city actively participated in rescue efforts. This study discusses how the local population has learned about the Holocaust, how the event has been remembered, and the implications of that memory for El Paso, the Holocaust survivors, the city's Jewish community, and the effects on the city's history.