January 27, 2020, marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the ending of the Second World War, and the end of the Holocaust. The land of Lithuania is marked with blood and tears of many victims of the Holocaust; this is why the International Holocaust Remembrance Day is an important date for our country and especially its youngest generation.
In Kaunas, there are several places you can visit to find out more about the dark passages of the history of our country and continent. Sunday, January 26, is a good time to visit the Ninth Fort. The most modern fort of Kaunas fortress, completed just before the WWI, is probably best known to each Kaunas’ resident or anyone else travelling via highway A1. From it, you can see a monument of an impressive size built in 1984 to commemorate the victims of fascism (sculptor Alfonsas Ambraziūnas, architects G. Baravykas and V. Vielius, fine artist K. Morkūnas).
During the interwar period, it served as a hard labour prison. Its prisoners were cultivating their vegetables. In 1940–1941 it was an NKVD prison and later a concentration camp where 30 to 50 thousand Lithuanian citizens were killed. In 1958, a museum was established in the fort, and it has been operating to this day. The museum offers guided tours and exhibits many grievous Nazi and Soviet genocide artefacts. The fort has been renewed, and almost all of its premises are available for visiting.
As January 26 is the last Sunday this month, the entrance to the Ninth Fort museum will be free. Simply pick up your free pass from the ticket office, visiting the Exposition of Occupations, and then the expositions of the Ninth Fort
On 12:15 pm and 2:15 pm, you’re welcome to attend free English-language tours in the museum (N-14). Please arrive some 30 mins earlier if you plan to join the group. The guides will provide more information about the institution, as well as the Holocaust in Lithuania.
During the visit to the museum, you will be invited to take a photo in front of the poster “WE REMEMBER” and to share your photos on social media using tags #WeRemember #NinthFort. The global “We Remember” campaign is dedicated to honouring the memory of the victims of the Holocaust and spreading the message that it cannot happen again – to none of the nations, races or social groups.