New Face of the Legendary Pharmacy
Drawers full of surprises, voice recordings over an old phone, and most of all new rooms that take visitors back in time to small wartime pharmacy with great history the Pharmacy Under the Eagle.
Not much to see at first, the facility later wonderfully reveals its bittersweet story. This, in short, is what newly renovated Pharmacy Under the Eagle in Plac Bohaterow Getta, the former Jewish ghetto, will present itself to guests. Mid-March, exactly at 70th anniversary of ghetto liquidation, Krakows Historical Museum opens its new exhibition in former pharmacy of Tadeusz Pankiewicz, the only gentile allowed to run a business in Jewish ghetto, who helped saved many lives during WW II.
- New exhibition will focus mainly on senses, as we want the guests to use all of them to discover the story of Tadeusz Pankiewicz, from sight and hearing to even the smell of medical ingredients - said Monika Bednarek from the Historical Museum, responsible for the factual side of the exhibition.
Remaking the interiors genuine look from historical photos was one of the goals during renovation, with replicas of furniture and utensils, some of them even originals rented out from the Pharmacy Museum in Krakow. The Pharmacy was granted some new rooms in a neighbouring building, and as a result the exhibition could be enlarged by one previously administrative room, the former laboratory room serving for preparing medication, to reach a total of 100 sq m.
The Pharmacy exhibition will tell a story of Krakows Jews before WW II, but also about life in the ghetto, recorded directly from the Holocaust survivors, and hope, encouragement and actual help given at the Pharmacy by Pankiewicz and his co-workers. People connected to the Pharmacy and their touching stories had been somewhat kept anonymous and in the shadow so far. Now they will speak to us personally, as many of historical pictures have been recovered said Bednarek.
Though not much has been preserved relating to the very person of Pankiewicz, some objects have been fortunately saved and are exhibited in the Pharmacy, including beautiful letters the survivors wrote to Pankiewicz after the war. The new exhibition challenges yet another topic: the post war negligence of Jewish tragedy and the Holocaust, not only in Krakow, but also in the whole of Poland.