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Two Who Dared: The Sharps' War


76 minutes
Source: Journey to Freedom

In 1939, Waitstill and Martha Sharp left behind the safety of their home in Wellesley, Massachusetts and flew to war-torn Europe. In Nazi-occupied Prague and Paris, in the grim detention camps of Vichy France and on hidden trails through the Pyrenees, they risked their lives to help feed, shelter, and rescue thousands of refugees, including anti-Nazi dissidents and Jews.

This compelling film asks us to to explore the following questions: Why did this Unitarian minister and his social worker wife undertake such a demanding mission? How did they help those in need, and what are their legacies today?

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Cordell Hull’s Telegram to Hiram Bingham, September 18, 1940

This telegram written to Hiram Bingham by the Secretary of State Cordell Hull, in response to rescue efforts of Jews and non-Jews in Vichy France during the Holocaust. Hiram Bingham served as a Vice Consul in Marseilles, France, and as such was in charge of issuing US visas. The letter also mentions two other men: Dr. Frank Bohn and Varian Fry.

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Students are introduced to upstanders Waitstill and Martha Sharp, an American minister and his wife who undertook a rescue mission to help save Jews and refugees fleeing Nazi occupation.

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Learn how the Sharps' rescue work began with a phone call from the American Unitarian community asking for their leadership in the refugee crisis in Prague, 1939. 

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Everything you need to get started teaching your students about racism, antisemitism and prejudice.