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Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission

The Texas Liberators

The Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission (THGC) has played the leading role in recognizing and teaching about soldiers from Texas who participated in the liberation of camp inmates late in the Holocaust. The THGC has funded and provided content in support of relevant initiatives at major universities in the state. On November 9, 2017, the THGC formally recognized these liberators and their families at the Senate Chambers in the Texas State Capitol. You can view footage of the ceremony here.

The November 2017 Texas Liberator Commemoration Ceremony at the Texas State Capitol | Photo Credit: Mark Umstot

The Texas Liberator Project with Texas Tech University

Texas Liberator Project

Texas Liberators: The Honor Roll

Oral Histories with Baylor University

Among the duties of the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission are to compile a list of liberators of concentration camps who have agreed to share their verifiable knowledge and experiences regarding the Holocaust and to gather resources that could be included in or used to support Holocaust and genocide courses of study and awareness programs. With these goals in mind, the THGC contracted with Baylor University’s Institute for Oral History to create the Texas Liberators Oral History project, chronicling the oral histories of 21 Texans who were involved in the liberation of camps at the end of World War II.

Now complete, the video interviews with 19 liberators are now available through the Commission's YouTube channel. The THGC has also partnered with the Library of Congress to make transcripts of the interviews available through the institution’s Veterans History Project. Links to trailers for several of the interviews are given below.

It’s the fervent hope of the THGC that the oral histories will be viewed by the public and these men remembered for their service and their efforts to free survivors of concentration camps and used by educators to meet TEKS requirements while bringing a human story to the horrific atrocities of the Holocaust. To accompany the testimonies, the THGC has developed lesson plans for classroom use. Aligning closely with the TEKS, these lessons provide teachers a way of incorporating media involving Texans into their World War II/Holocaust units for World Geography Studies, World History Studies, and U.S. History Studies Since 1877 classes.

Liberator Testimony Excerpts

Below are excerpts from five of the twenty-one Texas liberators interviewed by the Baylor University Institute for Oral History. Please visit the THGC YouTube channel to view the extended interviews of the veterans who took part in this project.