Five years ago, Glenn Kurtz discovered three minutes of color footage shot by his grandfather on a trip to the Polish village of Nasielsk. The year is 1938. Glenn’s grandfather inadvertently captured a world that will not exist just one year later.
When Glenn showed the footage to an archivist at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), he discovered what a rare find he had made. What he had thought was a family memento is the only known footage of Nasielsk before its annihilation. Of Nasielsk’s approximately 3,000 Jews, fewer than 100 survived the war.
Three Minutes in Poland chronicles Kurtz’s search for Nasielsk’s lost history, and for the identities of those captured on film. After a series of dead ends, a woman watching the 3‑minute movie on the website of the USHMM identified a 13 year-old boy in the footage and her grandfather, Maurice Chandler, who survived and lives in the U.S. And Mr. Chandler’s memory helps Glenn unlock the contents of the film in a remarkably vivid and moving way.