Extermination Camp

Early Beginnings

Opened in 1940 as a political camp. It later served as an extermination camp for Jews and other undesirables through the gas chambers or slave labor. It would become the largest camp due to its close approximation to rail lines.

Auschwitz One and its Subdivisions

Auschwitz One was the main camp housing 15,000-20,000 prisoners

Birkenau was the largest sub-camp housing 90,000 prisoners.

Monowitz, came to be known as Auschwitz III, was the largest of the slave labor camps with over 10,000 prisoners.

Camp Photos

Life and Death

Upon arrival to the camp, prisoners were sorted by Nazi doctors. Those unfit to work (elderly, young, pregnant, infirm) were taken immediately to the gas chambers.

Those who were initially selected to work often faced disease, starvation, overwork, and other brutal treatment.

Dr. Josef Mengele--"Angel of Death"

Dr. Mengele and his team of over 30 physicians experimented on prisoners in torturous ways including: changing eye color, air pressure tests, extreme freezing water tests, limb re-attachments, and experiments on twins.
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Auschwitz Death March

Upon hearing of the Soviets' impending arrival, the Germans began to burn records and destroy buildings. The March began in late January of 1945 with 60,000 prisoners. Many died on the march to a Polish towns 30 miles away. Those who survived were put on trains to other camps in Germany.
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