Book Launch: The Book Smugglers

Date: Oct 10, 2017 - Oct 10, 2017

Time: 7:00 p.m.

Location: New York City

Celebrating A New Book from JTS’s David Fishman

Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 7:00 p.m.

YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
15 West 16th St, New York, New York 10011


The Book Smugglers tells the story of the courageous Jews of the “Paper Brigade,” who risked their lives to rescue thousands of rare books and manuscripts—first from the Nazis and then from the Soviets—by hiding them on their bodies, burying them in bunkers in the Vilna Ghetto, and smuggling them across borders. This new book by JTS Professor of Jewish History David Fishman has been dubbed “Monuments Men for book lovers.” It is the epic chronicle of a little-known chapter from the darkest days of Jewish history.

The event will feature remarks by David Fishman, a musical program featuring songs by Shmerke Kaczerginski—a leader of the “Paper Brigade”—performed by Josh Waletzky, and commentary on the book by Aaron Lansky, founder and president of the Yiddish Book Center, Alexandra Wall, journalist, and YIVO’s executive director Jonathan Brent. Jonathan Brent will also discuss how the work to rescue Jewish culture and heritage from oblivion continues to this very day with the Edward Blank YIVO Vilna Collections Project.

A free reception will follow the program. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing by the author.

Co-sponsored by YIVO Institute for Jewish Research and the Yiddish Book Center.