Just a short detour from Boston's famous Freedom Trail is a historical monument of a completely different kind. Although you probably won't find it on your tour itinerary or map of Boston's many historic sites, the New England Holocaust Memorial is architecturally and artistically stunning ‒ and delivers an emotional impact that you won't soon forget.
The memorial centers around six glass towers that are lit day and night. Stanley Saitowitz, the Memorial's designing architect, calls them "towers of hope and aspiration." Each glass tower is seated over a black concrete pit named for one of the six Nazi death camps. A glowing fire burns in every pit.
A granite path leads visitors through the glass towers, which are inscribed with the six million ID numbers of Jewish Holocaust victims, while smoke drifts up from the pits below. The memorial is further informed by historical information and memories of Holocaust survivors.
Filled with symbolism, the memorial recalls the past while looking to a hopeful future. Light and dark are juxtaposed like death and life ‒ the ID numbers of victims are illuminated by the light of the towers, yet they cast shadows on the bodies of visitors as they walk through the memorial. The 54-foot tall towers echo the shape of smokestacks that topped the infamous Nazi gas chambers while they light Boston's night sky.
The New England Holocaust Memorial has won accolades for its design, and has been called "architecture with a soul." Uniquely moving and inspiring, the memorial is a must-see for visitors to the area.
Located outdoors, the memorial is open to visitors 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It is easily accessible by public transportation and situated near Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market on Boston's Freedom Trail.