After a four-year international search, the Holocaust Museum and Education Center of Southwest Florida acquired an authentic World War II – era railway boxcar. This 10-ton boxcar came to the Museum from Europe on May 16, 2007 and has undergone careful restoration. A rare artifact, this boxcar is an invaluable and mobile educational tool to support the Museum’s mission of promoting respect and understanding by teaching the history and lessons of the Holocaust.
The search and acquisition of the boxcar was undertaken by Jack Nortman, a Board Member and Past President of the Museum. Mr. Nortman’s family was caught in the web of the Nazis in Eastern Europe. Both of his parents survived and he was born in Landsberg, a displaced persons camp in Germany. The boxcar is on loan to the Museum from F.E. and Jack Nortman and the Nortman Family.
The museum’s unique Boxcar Transportation & Education Project, a world’s first, ensures that an important piece of history will visit students right on their school campus, serving as a traveling exhibit, the centerpiece in learning about the Holocaust.
Since the spring of 2008, the Boxcar Transportation & Education Project has impacted over 45,000 people in a six-county area. The boxcar has visited more than 60 locations, including public libraries, churches, elementary, middle and high schools, colleges and universities.
For the 2012-13 school year, the boxcar will undergo some minor repairs and will be at rest at the Holocaust Museum.
Boxcar in the News
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