Children of Korea
A Sixty Year Retrospective
On November 13, a group of Korean adoptees, lawmakers and adoption advocates gathered on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. for a special exhibit of photos from the archives of Holt International. As a point of celebration and reflection during National Adoption Awareness Month, Holt presented a collection of photos documenting life for many orphaned children following the Korean War, as well as the humble beginnings of what is now the leading international adoption agency. Illustrating the work of Harry and Bertha Holt in service of orphaned, abandoned and vulnerable children in Korea, the photos pay tribute to the couple, the thousands of families touched by international adoption, and adoptees themselves. Many of these photos had never been previously shared with the public.
The response to the exhibit was overwhelming. Susan Cox, Holt’s vice president of public policy and external affairs, said that adoptees from at least nine states attended the event in D.C., traveling from as far away as Alaska, Oregon and California. “Many of the adoptees had come to the U.S. in the 1950s, and the images in the photos represented Korea when they were there,” Susan says. “Several of the adoptees discovered that they came to the U.S. on the same flight, and that discovery was profoundly exciting. It has been gratifying to present these pictures to as many people as possible.”