Swedens first stumbling blocks has been placed in Stockholm

By on June 17, 2019
Inauguration of Stockholm's first stumbling block. Photo: Juliana Wiklund.

On Thursday, Sweden’s first stumbling blocks were placed at three addresses in Stockholm. Around 70,000 Stumblings blocks have been laid down in Europe the  Stumbling blocks were laid down to remember people who fell victim to the Holocaust. The stones are part of the European art project Stolpersteine.

– We are very happy that Stockholm and Sweden are now part of this important European memory project. The stumbling blocks remind us of people who sought refuge in Sweden but who were expelled and then murdered in the Holocaust.

– The stumbling blocks unite in a concrete and symbolic way Swedens and Stockholms present-day history with the European, says Ingrid Lomfors, superintendent at the Forum for Living History, one of the initiators of the project.

The Stumbling blocks are the memorial with the shape of a paving stone with an inscription that identifies a person who fell victim to the Holocaust. The memorial stone is designed by the German artist Gunter Demnig. He initiated the Stolpersteine ​​art project in the early 1990s to honor the Jews, Roma, political opponents of Nazism, homosexuals and others. which was displaced or destroyed by the Nazis in 1933-1945.

– The stumbling block should not make you fall, but cause you to stop and think about and devote a thought to the sacrifice of the Holocaust. People of flesh and blood who once lived, acted and passed in these places. Through the stumbling blocks in Stockholm, we give a contribution to keeping the story up to date. A paving stone that stands out, with one name, and a few years. In this simple way, we can pay attention to and honor the victims of the Holocaust that one does in many European cities and now we can also do so in Stockholm, says Jonas Naddebo (C), cultural and urban environment council in Stockholm.

At Kungsholmstorg 6, a memorial stone has been placed in memory of Erich Holewa, who was expelled in 1938 and deported to Auschwitz in 1942. At Apelbergsgatan 36 there is a stone in memory of Hans Eduard Szybilski. He was forced to leave Sweden at the end of 1938 and was deported from Berlin to Auschwitz in 1943. At Gumshornsgatan 6, a stone was placed in memory of Curt Moses, which was expelled in 1937 and he was probably killed in Riga in 1941 in connection with the German occupation.

– Before and during the Second World War, some of those who were persecuted by the Nazis applied to Sweden. The stumbling blocks are an important reminder that the Holocaust was something that happened not too long ago, not at all far from here, which also touched us here in Sweden, says Tommy Ringart, chairman of the Association of Holocaust Survivors.

The initiator of the stumbling blocks in Stockholm is the Forum for Living History, the Association of Holocaust Survivors and the Jewish Assembly in Stockholm. The project has been carried out in cooperation with the City of Stockholm.

Culture | The stumbling blocks were opened in Stockholm