Hiršas Birmanas šalia Teodoro Herclio antkapio, Viena, 1947.
© United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of George Birman
George Birman, was a Jewish photographer born in Königsberg in 1922. Born in a family of Jewish bussinesman, Birman spent his early childhood in Klaipėda, and later settled with his mom in Garžgdai, while his father Abel lived separatly in Kaunas. Despite that he remained close with his father. He received his first camera as a gift when he was just 10 years old and quickly fell in love with the art form. He spent much of his youth taking photos of his family, friends, and the surrounding countryside, developing his skills as a photographer.
In 1939 after his mother’s death, H. Birmans went to his father in Kaunas, where he actively engaged in photography. In the surviving photo collection, photographs of Antanas Smetona, ANBO planes, and the European Basketball Championship held in Lithuania could be found.
When German Army invaded Lithuania, he and his father were imprisoned in the Kaunas ghetto. By a miracle, they managed to survive. He also managed to save part of his photo collection, which included images of Gargždai. After the end of the war, H. Birmans visited Gargždai one more time, and later, together with his father, he managed to escape from the Soviet Union by using forged Polish pasports. In 1945, they managed to reach Vienna, where Hirsch Birman completed his studies in electronics. in 1952 settled in the USA, where he started his career as an engineer, and actively worked on the topic of Holocaust memory. Hirsch Birman died in 2009 in New York.