Fort Ontario, Oswego, Oswego County, New York, United States of America

Latitude 43°28′N
Longitude 76°30′W
City Oswego
County Oswego County
State/ Province New York
Country United States of America


After repeated refusals to allow Jewish refugees into the United States, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt finally allowed 928 escapees from eleven regions in Eastern Europe to enter the United States, and take temporary residence at Fort Ontario, which occupied more than 125 buildings, home to officers and enlisted men of several United States Army units, because of its remote location and available facilities; the perfect place to park 156 children and 826 adult Jews.
Fort Ontario, was used as an emergency refugee center for victims of the Holocaust, the only one of its kind in the United States.
In August, 1944, the refugees were allowed entryinto the United States on the condition that they leave once hostilities in Europe had ended; in fact, each refugee was required to sign a pledge to that effect.


In 1944, Moric Kamhi was interned at Fort Ontario.


In January, 1946, the Roosevelt Administration finally granted refugees immigrant status.
By February, 1946, all of the Jewish refugees had left Fort Ontario for the homes of families and friends.
Of the original group of 982 refugees who were housed at Fort Ontario, 854 chose to stay in the United States.



Safe Haven Museum and Education Center in Oswego NY

Source References

  1. Haven: The Unknown Story of 1,000 World War II Refugees


  1. Kamhi, Moric
  2. Tzechoval, Mossco Mosco