Auschwitz II Archivi - Memory makes us free

The history of Auschwitz

Auschwitz (Konzentrationslager Auschwitz), a name to which memories and feelings of terror, destruction and death are associated all over the world, was opened in 1940, in the town of Oswiecim, in south-western Poland occupied by the Nazis, and was initially only one of the thousands concentration camps scattered throughout Europe, dedicated to Polishes imprisonment. Auschwitz… Continua a leggere The history of Auschwitz

The selection

Every time a train loaded with prisoners entered Auschwitz, the same terrible procedure was repeated: the selection. The deportees had to get off the train leaving all their belongings next to the train, terrified, often in a silence which was deafening, families tried to reunite and everyone was promised that later they would regain their… Continua a leggere The selection

The Trains of Death

«We were loaded onto a truck with kicks and punches and taken to Milan Central Station. The city was deserted. The Milanese felt no pity for us like they feel no pity for the prisoners of San Vittore: they remained silent behind their windows. (…) Then the truck crossed the city, until it took the… Continua a leggere The Trains of Death

Mengele, the “Angel of Death”

Josef Mengele was a doctor and a member of the SS, who became famous for his experiments on Auschwitz children and for this reason he was nicknamed ‘’Angel of Death’’ and ‘’Black Angel’’. However, Mengele wasn’t an isolated criminal, because behind him there was  the entire German scientific community, who saw him as a brilliant… Continua a leggere Mengele, the “Angel of Death”

Children’s barracks

Over 150,000 Jewish, Roma and Sinti children were deported to Birkenau. Torn from their parents, they were all doomed to immediate death (shot next to the ditches near Krematorium V or Bunker 2, or sent to gas chambers), while very few exceptions were chosen for experimentation. The children were placed in one of the three… Continua a leggere Children’s barracks

Brick barracks

The brick barracks are located at the left of the railway yard. They were completely without any foundation, they were built in a hurry, and they laid on the marshy land of Birkenau.  The brick barracks were freezing in the winter and sultry, hot in the summer, almost all of these  shacks didn’t have a… Continua a leggere Brick barracks

Wooden barracks

The wooden barracks were located on the right (sector BII and BI) and on the left (sector BIII Mexico and Effektenlager Kanada II) of the internal arrival ramp in Birkenau. Firstly they could accommodate about fifty horses; then, after the opportune modifications they could even accommodate a thousand prisoners. It is easy to understand what… Continua a leggere Wooden barracks


This is one of the many and most significant places where,  people can see how the Nazis managed to bury even the last glimmer of humanity left as a dowry to the poor prisoners. The latrines were made up of many holes placed side by side, and were not equipped with a drainage system: an… Continua a leggere Latrines

Ashes memorial

Normally, in Nazi death camps, the ashes of the deceased at Auschwitz were hundreds if not thousands a day and were dispersed in rivers and in the surrounding woods. The Nazis, under pressure from the imminent end (and defeat), began to disperse the ashes even in pits inside the camp that were then covered with… Continua a leggere Ashes memorial

The Birkenau Memorial

The International Monument, built in the Auschwitz II camp, known as Birkenau, is located at the western end of the main road of the camp, where the tracks of the railway meet inside the Lager end, not far from the ruins of Crematorium II and Crematorium III, the largest gas chambers in Birkenau. All around… Continua a leggere The Birkenau Memorial

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