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Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp

(1936—1950)

The Sachsenhausen concentration camp mainly held political prisoners throughout World War II. Prominent prisoners include Joseph Stalin's oldest son Yakov Dzhugashvili, murderer Herschel Grynszpan, Paul Reynaud the penultimate Prime Minister of France, the wife and children of the Crown Prince of Bavaria, and several enemy soldiers and political dissidents. Sachsenhausen was a labor camp outfitted with several subcamps, a gas chamber, and a medical experimentation area. Prisoners were treated harshly, fed sparingly, and killed openly. Those held captive in Sachsenhausen were the men and women which the Third Reich wanted dead, not just because of their religion, but because of their political beliefs and their power over those who listened to them. Today, Sachsenhausen is open to the public as a memorial for the atrocities committed within its walls.

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Oranienburg

Stories

Stories

Edward Adler Describes deportation to and arrival at the Sachsenhausen camp [1992 interview]

One particular incident I recall like it was yesterday. An old gentleman with the name of Solomon, I'll never forget. He must have been well in his seventies, he simply couldn't run. He couldn't run, he had to walk. He couldn't run and he collapsed, and he laid in the road, and one of the Storm Troopers, a tall, young fellow, very slender, very tall, stepped on his throat. This is true. Unbelievable, but true, 'til the man was dead. We had to pick up his body and throw him to the side of the road, and we continued on into the camp, where we was assembled in a courtyard, and a strange incident happened at that time. We faced a barrack, a door on the right, a door on the left. People went in the left door, came out the right door, entirely different people. Their hair was shaven off, they had a prisoner's uniform on, a very wide, striped uniform. My number was 6199.

 

Source: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; http://www.ushmm.org/wlc/media_oi.php?lang=en&ModuleId=10005538&MediaId=1121

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Place Details

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Camp Commandants:
SS Lieutenant Colonel Anton Kaindl: 1942-April 22, 1945 1
SS Lieutenant Colonel Michael Johann Lippert: July 1936-October 1936 1
SS Major Karl Otto Koch: 01 Oct 1936 1
SS-Oberfuhrer Hans Loritz: 1940-1942 1
Location:
City: Oranienburg 2
Country: Germany 2
Subcamps:
44 3
1,200 Czech students imprisoned:
November 1939 1
1,200 Polish prisoners from Warsaw imprisoned:
03 May 1940 1
269 prisoners sent to killing center Sonnenstein:
June 1941 1
6,000 Jews deported after Kristallnacht to camp:
09 Nov 1938 1
6,000 Polish civilians sent to the camp:
August 1944 1
First Soviet POWs arrive, most shot on arrival:
August 1941 1
Germans transfer 50 prisoners to build camp:
12 Jul 1936 1
Jews living in Berlin arrested and sent to camp:
September 1939 1
Prisoners unfit to work are sent to Dachau:
October 1942 1
Soviet forces liberate Sachsenhausen:
22 Apr 1945 1
SS doctors begin selecting prisoners from the camp:
April 1940 1
SS guards begin camp evacuations:
21 Apr 1945 1
Unfit prisoners are sent to Bergen-Belsen:
1944 1
Prisoners:
30-35,000: Estimated number of victims 3
Approx. 200,000: Total number of prisoners 3

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