Barbara Krasner | History Writer and Poet

Warsaw, Poland

Images of America: Kearny’s Immigrant Heritage – purchase your copy now!

My Works

The Guardian
Short story named finalist in 2010 Salem College International Literary Awards and finalist for fiction fellowship for Western Michigan University's Prague Summer Program.

My Home Is Gone - Remnants of Jewish Poland
Available for exhibit and sale. Contact Barbara at

No Man's Land, 1939
In November 1939, Feigl Shlafmitz grapples with the fifteen-minute opening of No Man's Land that separates her family between Soviet-occupied Poland and Nazi-occupied Poland.

Voyage of Freedom, Voyage of Doom
American History article that chronicles the odyssey of the ill-fated MS St. Louis in 1939

Lady Liberty
The colossus we know as the Statue of Liberty owes its beginning to a humble dinner party that took place outside Paris in 1865.

The Kearny Public Library and Its Town: A Pictorial History
Years of planning came to fruition on a Saturday afternoon, July 27, 1907, when several hundred Kearny residents gathered to officially dedicate and open the Kearny Free Public Library. Local personalities including Kearny's mayor, Dr. Eugene Goldberg, John Cotton Dana, head of Newark's public library, and Father Thomas Conroy of St. Cecelia's carried a serious but inspiring message for the day: the opening of a door of learning for generations to come. They also expressed gratitude to philanthropist Andrew Carnegie for his donation that made it possible to build the library. A red ribbon bookmark with the golden words "Knowledge Is Power" accompanied an open book made completely of white carnations and pansies.

Come along on this journey and meet the people who helped make the library the soul and cornerstone of Kearny. You'll meet Mary Peck, who began Kearny's first lending library from her Beech Street home; Mayor Eugene Goldberg, who dedciated the library and in his role as physician, gave first aid lessons in the library during World War I; the KilGour sisters, Edna and Belle, who served as the town's first library directors; Jessie Hipp, who documented the town's history through significant milestone events such as Kearny's Centennial and the American Bicentennial and helped establish the Kearny Museum; and current and former Kearny residents who shared their experiences for this book. Whether you're new to the town or your family has lived in Kearny for generations, your journey through The Kearny Public Library and Its Town will prove to be unforgettable.

Images of America: Kearny’s Immigrant Heritage

"This book provides a visual record of the many threads that make up the ethnic tapestry of Kearny. While attesting to the richness and diversity of Kearny's immigrant communities, what struck me the most was the commonality shared by all. Immigrants of all ethnicities settled in the area seeking jobs and cherishing the freedoms enjoyed in our nation. Along the way, each immigrant community celebrated and remembered their traditions while seeing their children and grandchildren reach heights that their forebears dreamt
-Mayor Alberto Santos, Kearny

Images of America: Kearny, New Jersey
“By using black-and-white photos from the early 19th century, the author allows you to imagine yourself or distant relatives walking through Kearny. Photos of the past light up one’s imagination more effectively than words can.”
-The Observer

Discovering Your Jewish Ancestors
“Using a step-by-step, easy to follow approach, Krasner-Khait takes you by the hand in exploring historical records, archives, libraries, Web sites and more. Woven into the instruction are tons of success stories that will motivate and inspire.”
-Family Tree Magazine

Selected Works

Short Story
Inspired by my 2008 trip to Poland
Appeared in April 2015 issue of Jewish Literary Journal
Originally published in October 2016 on Lilith blog.
Photo Exhibits
Thirty photos of Warsaw and Barbara's ancestral "shtetlach"
Magazine Articles
American History article that chronicles the odyssey of the ill-fated MS St. Louis, a ship of nearly 1,000 German-Jewish refugees, in 1939. Based on interviews with survivors and archival research.
Cover story for History Channel Magazine, July/August 2008
This book chronicles the development of the library as a place for knowledge, a place to grow, a place for community, and a place where time stands still. In its 100-year history, the library has contributed to making the Town of Kearny a "place where everyone knows your name."
"You've done a great job capturing the heart of many of our childhoods."--Linda Kaywork Barbieri
“It’s a great gift for any Kearny resident. The pictures are priceless!”
-Debra C.Bird
“A perfect Hanukkah gift!”
-Family Tree Magazine