The Nazi Death Marches

By: Colin Schmeling

Death March Background Knowledge

Most people know about the holocaust and the horrible things that happened during Hitler and the Nazi's reign. But even worse than the concentration camps and ghettos were the death marches. Jews being forced to walk from their camps with just what they had on them. Most had no shoes, barely any clothes, no shelter, and almost no food. If not dead from starvation or the cold, they got shot. Jews had to dig their own mass graves, where they got executed by the Nazis.
Holocaust Survivor Testimonies: The Death Marches

Death March Survivor

This video is about a woman who experienced the death marches herself, and lived to tell her story. She talks about what happened, how it felt, and her experiences with the Nazi death march. Its a very moving video, check it out.

primary document of the nazi death marches

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The Death March Paths

In the map above, you can see the many death marches that took place plus where that started and where the went. As you can see Jews and other victims had to walk all across Germany only to be killed or starved. You can also identify the major camps like Auschwitz, Buchenwald, and Bergen-Belsen.

The Death Marches Impact on the Holocaust

The death marches were a last ditch attempt by Hitler and the Nazis to "sterilize" the world of Jews. It was also a way to cover up their tracks from the allies. They didn't want the Jews to tell the allies what horrible things happened in the camps like Auschwitz. But when the few remaining Jews were liberated it made the Nazis look even worse. Just from Auschwitz, 66,000 prisoners were marched off, there were 13 known survivors, but there were many more we don't know about.

Interesting Holocaust Facts

1. 11 million people were killed in the holocaust, 6 million were Jews, 1.1 million were children.

2. 1/3 of all Jews were murdered in the holocaust, 2/3 of all Jews in Europe.

3.100,00 Jews (not including other discriminated cultures) died in death marches, a relatively low number compared to 11 million, but they died in horrible ways.