Museum of Otto Weidt's Workshop for the Blind (Museum Blindenwerkstatt Otto Weidt)
This Museum serves as a moving tribute to one of the everyday heroes of World War II. Otto Weidt was a visually impaired man who owned and ran a factory that produced brooms and brushes. Weidt employed many blind and deaf Jewish workers, and during the war he went to great lengths to protect them from persecution and deportation.
Otto Weidt’s business was considered vital to the war effort, because many of his products were made for armed forces. An extraordinary man, Otto Weidt took considerable risks to keep his employees safe: He falsified documents to help prevent deportation, hid people in the back of the factory, and even bribed the Gestapo to release his workers from assembly camps.
The museum is housed in the original factory, which looks as it did during the war, with simple wooden floors, equipment, and even a secret back room where Weidt hide those threatened with deportation. Visit to learn about Weidt and his workers through personal letters, poems, and photographs of daily life in the workshop.
Things to Know Before You Go
There is no admission fee at the museum.
The museum offers free tours on Sunday afternoons; groups of eight or more can also arrange private tours.
Audio guides are available in German, English, French, Italian, and Hebrew.
How to Get There
Museum Otto Weidt’s Workshop for the Blind is located at 39 Rosenthaler Strasse in the Spandauer suburb of central Berlin, approximately a 10-minute walk from Alexanderplatz. You can reach the area by taking the U8 subway line to Weinmeisterstrasse, or by taking the S5, S7, or S75 train to Hackescher Markt. Alternatively, you can visit the museum as part of a Jewish Heritage walking tour.
When to Get There
The museum is open every day of the week, from late morning through evening, but is closed on December 24th. Tours are held on Sunday afternoons.
Visit the Old Jewish Cemetery
To learn more about Berlin’s Jewish history, visit the Old Jewish Cemetery (Alter Jüdischer Friedhof), which is just a short walk from the museum. This is the oldest Jewish cemetery in the city and was originally built in the 17th century. In 1943, it was destroyed by the Gestapo, but after the war, the area was restored with memorial plaques honoring those originally buried there.
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