‘Vital Passage’ chronicles a pair of midwestern Jewish merchants’ amazing story as they risked their business and livelihood to provide a vital passage for German Jews to escape the Holocaust and come to America.
For 85 years (1906 through 1991) Plaut’s Dry Goods store was a fixture on Goshen’s Main Street. David Plaut and his son Sidney owned Plaut’s Dry Goods Store in Goshen, Indiana,
which operated for 85 years. The 2001 discovery of a lockbox hidden in the basement of the former Plaut’s Dry Goods store would unlock their seventy-year-old secret. The official
documents found inside revealed the scope of the Plaut’s story of rescue, sacrifice and courage.
After witnessing firsthand the mounting persecution of the Jews in Germany, the Plauts decided to take action by sponsoring and aiding 28 German Jewish refugees to relocate to the
United States. This nine-year quest was a guarded secret that was rarely ever shared.