About Museum of History and Regional Studies in Novogrudok

Museum of History and Regional Studies in Novogrudok with the permanent exhibition devoted to the history and culture of the town and the region was opened in 1987. It’s a state Museum financed from the local budget. It receives visitors from Belarus and from abroad, about 12 000 visitors a year.

The Museum focuses on the multinational character of the region where Belarusians, Jews, Poles and Tatars have lived for ages. It has been keeping close contacts with emigrants from Novogrudok since the very beginning considering them as part of the regional history and culture. Polish and Tatar communities still exist in Novogrudok and are organized either around the Mosque or the House of Poles. There’s no Jewish community, no synagogue in the town now but the activities of the Museum in cooperation with the Jewish Diaspora from Novogrudok have obviously led to re-integration (re-embedding) of the lost Jewish history into the general history of the place.

The Museum functions as a research and educational center, permanently organizes scientific conferences in cooperation with the Institute of History of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, leading Belarusian Universities and also other events like Festivals of Medieval Culture. Seminars on teaching the Holocaust for secondary school teachers have been organized since 2003 together with the London Jewish Cultural Center, the Russian Research and Educational Holocaust Center in Moscow and the Republican Holocaust Foundation in Minsk.

Separate permanent exhibition ‘Jewish Resistance during the Holocaust in the area of Novogrudok’ was created in 2007 on the former ghetto site. It is devoted to the escape through the tunnel built by the ghetto prisoners and the Bielski partisans. Both acts of successful resistance are unique in the history of the Jewish resistance in Europe during WWII. The exhibition is the only one of such kind not only in Belarus but on the whole territory of the former Soviet Union.

Novogrudok can potentially become a Center for research and teaching Jewish history, culture and the Holocaust.

Exhibition ‘Museum of Jewish Resistance in Novogrudok’
Museum of History and Regional Studies in Novogrudok