History and Memory
“Waterhole” research task 1
Auschwitz Concentration Camp
Largest of its kind
Included 3 main camps, all of which held prisoners at forced labor One also functioned for an extended period as a killing centre Located in and around the town of Oswiecim, in southeastern Poland At least 960,000 Jews were killed in Auschwitz
Part of the ‘Final Solution’ to the Jewish “problem”. Jews were taken there from all over Europe in crowded cattle trucks, those who survived the journey were split into two groups, those to be immediately killed and those who could temporarily be useful as slave labor Most new arrivals were stripped and put into "shower" buildings where they were sealed in and a gas bomb was dropped in through holes in the roof. This killed them and their bodies were then put into crematoria buildings where they were burnt By mid 1942, mass gassing of Jews using Zyklon-B began at Auschwitz, where extermination was conducted on an industrial scale with some estimates running as high as three million persons eventually killed through gassing, starvation, disease, shooting, and burning
First prisoner camp used by Germans in the Oswiecim area
Main killing center in the area, and is many times larger than Auschwitz-I Many hundreds of thousands of people were systematically killed.
At Auschwitz children were often killed upon arrival. Children born in the camp were generally killed on the spot. Near the end of the war, in order to cut expenses and save gas, cost-accountant considerations led to an order to place living children directly into the ovens or throw them into open burning pits.
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