The 1920s Berlin Project isn’t just a place where people roleplay, dance, drink and have fun.
We also use our time travel experience to learn about the past and try and imagine what Berlin was like before the Nazis took over in 1933.
As part of our strong connection with RL 1920s Berlin, we have chosen to support an impressive project that commemorates individual victims of Nazism by sponsoring a Stolperstein.
“Stolperstein” is the German word for “stumbling block”, “obstacle”, or “something in the way.”
Throughout RL Berlin (and many other cities) you can find, or stumble over, thousands of these little brass stones in the pavement.
These memorials commemorate individuals who were consigned by the Nazis to prisons, euthanasia facilities, sterilization clinics, concentration camps, and extermination camps, as well as those who responded to persecution by emigrating or committing suicide.
While the vast majority of stolpersteine commemorate Jewish victims of the Holocaust, others have been placed for Sinti and Romani people (also called gypsies), homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Black people, Christians (both Protestants and Catholics) opposed to the Nazis, members of the Communist Party and the Resistance, military deserters, and the physically and mentally disabled.
The stones are dug into the pavement outside the houses where these people used to live.
A very moving and emotional monument to a single person can sometimes leave a bigger impact then a monument to thousands.
When I fist stumbled upon such a stone during my visit to RL Berlin, I must confess I had not heard about them and found it hard not to burst into tears on the spot.
It seems suitable that our 1920s Berlin Project, created to remember what the city was like before 1933, should be involved with the Stolpersteine.
We have been in contact with the artist Gunter Demnig and other people involved with this great way to remember who and what was lost, and they are very excited about what we do here in Second Life.
We, in turn, are of course in awe of their great undertaking.
So we decided to sponsor this initiative by placing a donation meter at our Teleportplatz.
And in 2012 we were able to pay for the first Stolperstein to be installed.
This is the stone we supported back then, you can see it on the Rykestrasse 54 in RL Berlin;
We decided to sponsor two more and recently the donation meter filled up so I am proud and touched to be able to say we can now have two more Stolpersteine installed!
Thank you very much everyone who made the donations.
I will contact the artist and discuss with him the two people we can pick a Stolperstein for and let you know as soon as the names have been picked and when the stones will be installed.
Be warned, it takes a lot of work to make these stones, travel to the locations and install them.
And Herr Demnig is not that often in Berlin, so it can take up to two years before our stone is placed.
But, no matter what happens in SL or to our sim, we shall make sure the stone is placed.
The donation meter has been reset to zero and we are taking donations for our third Stolperstein, you can find the meter at our Teleport area.