No beautiful museum in the center of Jerusalem, no teams of dedicated scholars mining the scrolls for historical and spiritual information. And yet, the sacred texts that rose from the ruins of the Warsaw Ghetto remain largely silent and obscure. Indeed, to this day, almost no one knows about the Oyneg Shabes Archive or the remarkable man who created it, Emanuel Ringelblum.


Discovered in 1946 and 1950, the thousands of surviving documents of the Archive were housed in underfunded conditions in the Jewish Historical Institute of Warsaw for decades. Written in Yiddish and Polish and largely untranslated, the Archives remained largely unknown outside of academic circles. Only in 1990 was funding available to apply modern preservation techniques on the crumbling treasure. According to Peter Miller, writing a review of historian Samuel Kassow's 2007 seminal work on the Archive, Who Will Write Our History?, "During those long years, Ringelblum's Archive lay in the ground, or in restoration baths, or in closed cupboards, waiting, waiting, waiting." Finally, in 2007, Indiana University Press published Kassow's book and, according to Miller, Kassow is the first to give a picture of the whole project, and of its amazing chief protagonist. For all these reasons, this book—itself an act of historical rescue—is a work of tremendous significance.

In 2013, Indiana University Press and Professor Kassow agreed to option the rights to make a documentary film based on his book to filmmaker Roberta Grossman. Now, 70 years after the hasty burial of the Archives on the eve of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, the voices of the Oyneg Shabes Archive will finally be heard in the new feature-length documentary Who Will Write Our History.

About the Film

Milk Cans Containing Archival Materials Filmmakers Scholars Film FAQ

The Story

Members of the Oyneg Shabes Timeline Voices

Make a Donation

You can be a part of bringing Who Will Write Our History to the screen with your donation. Any amount is welcome and every donor will receive credit on the website donor page. All donations of $180 or more will receive credit in the film.

Donate Now
Remains of the Warsaw Ghetto wall

In the News

May 1, 2017

Nancy Spielberg and Roberta Grossman answer Five Questions about Who Will Write Our History.—Stay Thirsty Magazine.

April 5, 2017

Nancy Spielberg discusses Who Will Write Our History at Temple Israel in Palm Beach.—Palm Beach Daily News.

National Endowment for the Humanities Grant
April 2, 2017

Katahdin Productions Receives NEH Production Grant for Who Will Write Our History.—Read Press Release.

READ MORE
Underground Ghetto newspaper

Articles of Interest

August 10, 2017

Momentmag.com "Favorite Jewish Movie Scenes of All Time," with comments from Roberta Grossman

march 24, 2017

The Australian Jewish News Nancy (Spielberg) goes above and beyond."

september 20, 2016

Haaretz Rokhl Kafrissen article, "Women historians who are guardians of Shoah memory."

july 15, 2016

The Jewish Post and Opinion Miriam Zimmerman article, "A Treasure Trove in the Warsaw Ghetto."

may 17, 2016

The Jewish Week explores "The New Suburban Auteurs," including director Roberta Grossman...

READ MORE
Ghetto Soup Kitchen

Film FAQs

february 2017

Learn more about the film and the book on which it is based, Who Will Write Our History ...

READ MORE

Our Supporters Comment

“It is critical, especially seventy years later in this, the age of Holocaust deniers, that this unusual trove of Jewish history is documented and shared.”

Gale Epstein President, Co-founder and Creative Director at Hanky Panky, Ltd.

Our Supporters Comment

“To see justice served by bringing Ringelblum's work public will be very powerful and is extremely important.”

Al Berg Al and Gayle Berg Foundation

Our Supporters Comment

"We owe it to the courageous men and women of the Archive, who labored in real time to document and memorialize the life and death struggle of the largest Jewish community in Europe, to tell this story."

David Roskies Author, editor, and scholar

Our Supporters Comment

“All of Roberta Grossman’s films are excellent, so we’re very excited to support her latest endeavor.
Hurry and finish, so we can screen it at our festival!

Julie Hoffman & Ara RubyanBaton Rouge Jewish Film Festival