The cultural center of the Lithuanian consulate in Chicago is hosting an exceptional exhibition starting at the end of November called “One Century out of Seven: Lithuania, Lite, Lita.” The exhibit covers the history of Litvaks from the first arrivals and settlement of Jews in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania to the present day. The exhibit is now circulating in Chicago and suburbs. On January 12 it was presented to the Jewish community of Highland Park.
Exhibit author Pranas Morkus was able to present remarkable details of the relationships between Jews and locals and included a number of notable Litvaks, the most notable and best known being the Vilna Gaon, who is credited with making Vilnius the Jerusalem of Lithuania.
On January 15 the exhibit opened at the North Suburban Beth El Synagogue. Visitors sent photos to facebook and they may be viewed on the LJC webpage.
A large number of Jews with roots in Lithuania live in America and are proud to call themselves Litvaks.
The exhibit was the result of work by Pranas Morkus, the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry, the Lithuanian Jewish Community and the designers Victoria Sideraitė-Alon and Jūratė Juozėnienė from the JUDVI design studio.
Lithuanian consul in Chicago Mantvydas Bekešius said the exhibit demonstrates Jews were, are and will always be an important part of the story of Lithuania.