This exhibition displays prominent German Jewish athletes. Whether they were distinguished national team members, world, European, and Olympic champions, or record holders – all of the athletes were celebrated heroes of their time. This display recognizes their incredible accomplishments and contributions to modern sports in Germany, and documents the persecution that they suffered under the Nazi regime. Some of them were practicing Jews, while others had no self-concept of being Jewish, but learned of their origins when the Nazis began persecuting Jews in 1933. Nazi authorities even exploited a few of the Jewish athletes in order to prevent the threatened boycott of the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. One thing is certain; the Nazi dictatorship disrupted the lives and career paths of all the athletes. They were ostracized, disenfranchised, persecuted, forced to leave their homes, or murdered.
With the story of swimmer Sarah Poewe, the exhibition offers some perspective on present day sports in Germany. At the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, she became the first Jewish athlete to win an Olympic medal for Germany since the end of World War II.