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The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And Its Liberation

The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And Its Liberation


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When the men of the 42nd “Rainbow” Division rolled into the Bavarian town of Dachau at the tail end of World War II, they expected to find an abandoned training facility for Adolf Hitler’s elite SS forces, or maybe a POW camp.

What they discovered instead would be seared into their memories for as long as they lived—piles of emaciated corpses, dozens of train cars filled with badly decomposed human remains, and perhaps most difficult to process, the thousands of “walking skeletons” who had managed to survive the horrors of Dachau, the Nazi’s first and longest-operating concentration camp.

“Almost none of the soldiers, from generals down to privates, had any concept of what a concentration camp really was, the kind of condition people would be in when they got there, and the level of slavery and oppression and atrocities that the Nazis had perpetrated,” says John McManus, a professor of U.S. military history at the Missouri University of Science and Technology, and author of Hell Before Their Very Eyes: US Soldiers Liberate Concentration Camps in Germany, April 1945.

“It was stunning.”

The liberation of Dachau by American troops on April 26, 1945, wasn’t the first such deliverance by Allied troops. The Soviets had found and freed what remained of Auschwitz and other death camps months earlier. But the wrenching images and first-hand testimonies recorded by Dachau’s shocked liberators brought the horrors of the Holocaust home to America.

WATCH: No soldier survives alone. Based on an extraordinary true story, "The Liberator" is available now on Netflix. Produced by A+E Studios. Watch preview here.

Dachau Became a Model for Nazi Concentration Camps

When Dachau opened in 1933, the notorious Nazi war criminal Heinrich Himmler christened it as “the first concentration camp for political prisoners.” And that’s what Dachau was in its early years, a forced labor detention camp for those judged as “enemies” of the National Socialist (Nazi) party: trade unionists, communists, and Democratic Socialists at first, but eventually Roma (Gypsies), homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses and of course, Jews.

The cruelly efficient operation of Dachau was largely the brainchild of SS officer Theodor Eike, who instituted a “doctrine of dehumanization” based on slave labor, corporal punishment, flogging, withholding food and summary executions of anyone who tried to escape. The Dachau prisoners labored under brutal conditions tearing down a massive WWI-era munitions factory and then constructing the barracks and offices that would serve as the chief training ground for the SS.

The prisoners even built their own “protective custody camp,” the euphemistically named concentration camp within the sprawling Dachau complex, composed of 32 squalid barracks surrounded by an electrified barbed-wire fence, a ditch and seven guard towers. Prisoners were subjected to medical experiments, including injections of malaria and tuberculosis, and the untold thousands that died from hard labor or torture were routinely burned in the on-site crematorium.

Forged into the iron gate separating the concentration camp from the rest of Dachau were the taunting words, Arbeit Macht Frei (“Work sets you free”). Dachau was such a success for the Nazis that Eike was promoted to inspector general of all German concentration camps, for which Dachau became the model.

After the events of Kristallnacht (“night of broken glass”), in which Jewish synagogues, businesses and homes were destroyed by Nazi mobs across Germany, a greater and greater number of Jews were held at Dachau. On the eve of the American liberation of Dachau, there were 67,665 registered prisoners at the concentration camp and roughly a third of them were Jewish.

First the Smell, Then the Death Train

For the unwitting U.S. infantrymen who marched into Dachau in late April 1945, the first clue that something was terribly wrong was the smell. Some soldiers thought they were downwind from a chemical factory, while others compared the acrid odor to the sickening smell of feathers being burned off a plucked chicken. None of their prior combat experiences prepared them for what lay ahead.

Weeks earlier, Nazi commanders at Buchenwald, another notorious German concentration camp, packed at least 3,000 prisoners into 40 train cars in order to hide them from the approaching Allied armies. The train was supposed to arrive in Dachau a few days later, but the tortuous odyssey ended up lasting three weeks. All but a quarter of the train’s 3,000 passengers died from starvation, dehydration, asphyxiation and disease. The survivors were herded into the concentration camp while thousands of fallen corpses were left to rot on the railway cars.

“If you’re a U.S. soldier arriving at Dachau, you’d almost certainly see the ‘death train’ first,” says McManus.

Bodies ‘Stacked Like Cordwood’

The abhorrent sights and smells of the death train left many American soldiers physically sick and emotionally shell shocked, but it was only a taste of the horrors awaiting them inside the actual camp. In the weeks leading up to the liberation, the Nazis had shipped in prisoners from across Germany and as far away as Auschwitz. Like the survivors of the Buchenwald death train, these new arrivals were starving and riddled with diseases like typhus.

READ MORE: The Shocking Liberation of Auschwitz

The Dachau prison guards packed the new arrivals into the already overcrowded barracks, cramming up to 1,600 men into buildings designed for 250. Starvation and disease tore through the camp, claiming the lives of thousands of prisoners just days before the liberation. The Nazis tried to cremate as many of these bodies as they could before abandoning Dachau, but there were too many. Another 7,000 Dachau prisoners, mostly Jews, were sent on a death march to Tegernsee in the south, during which stragglers were shot and thousands of others died from exhaustion.

When the American GIs entered the concentration camp, they found piles of naked corpses, their skin stretched tight across impossibly malnourished bodies. In interview after interview, the soldiers described the dead bodies being “stacked like cordwood,” a metaphor that unintentionally robbed the fallen prisoners of their remaining humanity. But for the soldiers to think of those bodies as fully human at that moment would have been too much to bear.

“Everywhere you turn is just this horror of bodies, and people near death or in a state of complete decrepitude that you can’t even process it,” says McManus.

In a Fit of Rage, Soldiers Gun Down Nazi Prisoners

When the American soldiers of the 45th “Thunderbird” Division stumbled upon the death train, it was like lighting a fuse that couldn’t be snuffed out. The men of the 45th had been in combat for 500 days and thought they had witnessed every grisly atrocity that war could throw at them. But then there was this train filled with innocent bodies, their eyes and mouths open as if crying out for mercy. Many of the American soldiers broke down in sobs. Others seethed with red-hot rage.

When four German officers emerged from the woods holding up a white handkerchief, Lt. William Walsh marched them into one of the box cars littered with corpses and shot them with his pistol. When the mortally wounded Germans cried out in agony, other American GIs finished the job.

Inside Dachau, it only got worse. An estimated 50 to 125 SS officers and assorted German military, including hospital personnel, were rounded up in a coal yard. Walsh called for a machine gun, rifles and a Tommy gunner. When the soldiers began loading a belt of bullets into the machine gun, the German prisoners stood up and began to move toward their American captors. That’s when Walsh allegedly took out his pistol and yelled, “Let them have it!”

After a 30-second flurry of gunfire, at least 17 German prisoners lay dead in the Dachau coal yard.

“I will tell you, as someone who has studied this in a great deal of depth, that this is pretty much the only time that American soldiers do this among many, many liberations in many places,” says McManus. “The separating factor is leadership, because you have a company commander who is so deeply upset at what he’s seen that he just loses it. And when a leader loses it, soldiers are going to lose it, too.”

WATCH: World War II in HD on HISTORY Vault

Unequipped to Help the Survivors

Chief among the many traumatic experiences that awaited the liberators at Dachau was encountering the surviving prisoners who numbered around 32,000. “Walking skeletons” was the only way to describe their condition of extreme malnourishment and illness. Ridden with typhus and lice, the overwhelmed prisoners grabbed at their liberators’ uniforms in disbelief that their tortuous ordeal was finally over.

Unprepared and ignorant of how to care for people in such advanced stages of starvation, the soldiers pulled out their C-rations and Hershey bars and gave everything over to the skeletal prisoners, who gorged themselves on the food. Tragically, their digestive systems simply couldn’t handle solid food.

“Decades later, some of these soldiers were racked with guilt over the revulsion they first felt when seeing the prisoners, and then for overfeeding them,” says McManus. “They were killing them with kindness.”

Further compounding the guilt was the fact that the American soldiers couldn't let the liberated prisoners actually leave Dachau. They had to be nursed to health first, which would take months, and then they would need a place to go. Tragically, some of the Jewish prisoners liberated from Dachau languished in displaced persons camps for years before being allowed to emigrate to places like the United States, the UK and Palestine.

From Liberators to Witnesses

Most of the American GIs who liberated Dachau only stayed for a few days before moving on to other missions. The care of the survivors was entrusted to combat medical units, while teams of engineers were charged with burying bodies and cleaning up the camp.

Word of what happened at places like Dachau and Buchenwald spread quickly through the Allied ranks, and many soldiers and officers came to the concentration camps in the days and weeks following liberation to bear witness to the Nazi atrocities. Adolf Hitler committed suicide a day after Dachau was liberated and German defeat was all but assured, but for many soldiers, seeing Dachau for themselves gave the war a new meaning. They weren’t just fighting an enemy; they were fighting evil itself.

General Dwight D. Eisenhower, along with Generals George Patton and Omar Bradley, visited the Ohrdurf concentration camp on April 12, 1945, a week after it was liberated. It was as if Eisenhower knew that the Nazi atrocities of the Holocaust would one day be dismissed as “exaggerations” or denied outright.

“The things I saw beggar description,” said Eisenhower. “The visual evidence and the verbal testimony of starvation, cruelty and bestiality were so overpowering as to leave me a bit sick ... I made the visit deliberately, in order to be in a position to give first-hand evidence of these things if ever, in the future, there develops a tendency to charge these allegations merely to ‘propaganda.’”

READ MORE: Horrors of Auschwitz: The Numbers Behind WWII's Deadliest Concentration Camp


Brave survivor tells of horrifying ways Nazis humiliated Auschwitz prisoners

For 40 years Auschwitz survivor Mindu Hornick was unable to talk about the horrors she had seen when she was a prisoner in a Nazi death camp.

She was just 12 when she, her sister, her mother, and her two younger brothers were herded onto the cattle trains that would take them from their native Czechoslovakia to Poland.

For years they had been subjected to the brutality of Hitler&aposs troops and in 1943 they joined millions of other Jews at the concentration camps that would horrify the world when they were discovered.

Mindu, now 90, explained: "My father was taken away to join the German Army. They were given no uniform, just an armband with the Star of David, and they had to dig trenches.

"Two years later the Jewish community was taken to live in a ghetto and after about six weeks we were taken to the railway sidings and told to get on the cattle trucks.

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"There were about 70 of us and all of us were mothers and children - there were no men, they had been taken away for the army."

For three days Mindhu travelled with her mother and three siblings. There was no water or sanitation.

Finally, the carriage stopped and a Jewish man jumped on. He told Mindhu&aposs mother to say she she and her sister were older than they were, that they were seamstresses and to let them go.

Confused and bewildered by what was happening, her mother agreed. Mindu believes this act saved her life - but she would never see her mother, father or younger brothers again.

She and her sister joined a huge line of people and when they got to the front, they realised a selection process was happening.

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Mindhu said: "There were piles of dead bodies and severely emaciated people walking round. We thought we had entered hell and there was so much shouting."

What came next was horrifying and something Mindhu will never forget.

She said: "They stripped us naked and shaved our heads. The whole time we were being sorted into sections, we were naked.

"For young girls, many of them going through puberty, no one had ever seen them naked, not even their mothers. They did everything they could to humiliate us.

"After we had been disinfected we were give gowns that were full of lice and taken to Block 14, where there were already 1,000 women."

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Against the odds, one of Mindhu&aposs aunts was also at the camp and managed to find her nieces.

She &apostraded&apos them with another family so they could move into the same block as her - a crime punishable by death by whipping.

The Nazi &aposangel of death&apos Dr Mangele was often seen in Auschwitz and Mindu and her sister learned to be afraid of him.

She said: "He was a handsome man and always immaculately dressed with his hair in place and every button polished.

"He carried white leather gloves with him and if he pointed one of them at someone, they were never seen again."

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Food at the camp was scarce, nothing but a bowl of greasy turnip soup and a tiny piece of bread each day.

Mindu said: "The bread was made with saw dust. This wasn&apost food that would sustain life for long."

After nine months in Auschwitz, Mindu, her sister and her aunt were chosen to go and work in a munitions factory in the countryside near Hamburg.

It was back-breaking work. They were woken at 4am and marched to the factory, where they would lift heavy bombs and grenades until 7pm each evening.

But there was one upside - the food was better.

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Mindu said: "They gave us German soup, which was full of pulses and vegetables. When I speak in schools I tell the children that if you have one good bowl of soup a day, it can save your life."

Finally, the war was over and liberation came but it was a perilous path to freedom for Mindu and her surviving family members.

There was a huge bombing and finally they were met by the British, who gave them medicine and food.

After eight weeks of recuperation, Mindu and her family returned to Prague and discovered another of their aunts had survived, who they went to live with.

But three years after World War Two was over, the Russians arrived in Czechoslovakia and announced they would be closing the borders in 1949.

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Mindu&aposs family were determined they wouldn&apost be trapped and she was sent to live with an uncle in Birmingham, while he sister was moved to Australia.

It was the city that Mindu would make home for the rest of her life, falling in love and marrying.

For 40 years she kept the horrors she had endured during the war to herself but then was determined others would learn from what had happened and began a fearless programme of education.

She tells her story in the hope what she endured will never again be allowed to happen.

Mindu explained: "I came to a country with a Stateless passport and they, along with my aunt and uncle, gave me security and freedom, and there is something one must give back.

"Racism, anti-semitism, Islamaphobia, it&aposs begining to rise so the right people have to go and educate. For years, children weren&apost taught about the Second World War and the Holocaust and that had to change."

Her bravey has led to many awards for Mindu, from the Queen&aposs honours list to two honorary degrees.

But being give the Pride Of Birmingham Lifetime Achievement Award is truly special for her.

Mindu explained: "This is the icing on the cake. This one is the really special one."


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Death Camps In America Lessons From Dachau

See incredible footage from when the americans liberated the dachau concentration camp, and consider whether death camps are in the future of the united stat. Part 5: death marches, liberation and displaced persons camps (1944 1957) survivors of the death march from the dachau concentration camp were liberated by american troops when ss guards retreated in late april and early may 1945. photo credit: yad vashem #3845 1. These two videos are the personal stories of two u.s. army soldiers, one a private first class with the 42nd infantry and the other an american officer of jewish heritage, both of whom took part in the liberation of the concentration death camp at dachau. This study examines the nazi concentration camp at dachau just after its liberation by american forces on april 29, 1945. of key importance are the decisions made and actions undertaken by the americans, the reasoning behind them, and the physical, emotional, and psychological effects that they had on the former prisoners. The frustration comes from believing that much of the world didn’t learn from, and didn’t change as a result of, the inhumanity at dachau and similar camps. holocaust survivor recalls the lie.

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On the eve of the american liberation of dachau, there were 67,665 registered prisoners at the concentration camp and roughly a third of them were jewish. first the smell, then the death train. Seventy five years ago the u.s. army liberated dachau, a concentration camp operated by nazi germany during world war ii. on april 29, 1945 the u.s. army’s 42nd infantry division, now a part of the new york army national guard, uncovered the concentration camp in the town of dachau, near munich germany. according to a press release by the new york national guard, the frontline soldiers in. Graphic content: in this photograph taken on may 1, 1945, us soldiers look at a pile of prisoner’s bodies in a train near dachau concentration camp, after the camp was liberated by the us army.

Death Camps In America? Lessons From Dachau

see incredible footage from when the americans liberated the dachau concentration camp, and consider whether death camps are in the future of the united the story of the complex events that occurred during liberation of dachau camp by the us army in april 1945. special thanks to frederick at filmhauer this educator video toolbox is aligned to echoes & reflections, a comprehensive holocaust education program that delivers professional development and a dachau concentration camp (german: konzentrationslager (kz) dachau) was the first of the nazi concentration camps opened in germany, intended to hold brothels for prisoners in concentration camps. for a long time, this topic had not been broadly talked about in the (educational) work at memorial sites. with this as allied troops moved across europe in a series of offensives against nazi germany, they began to encounter tens of thousands of concentration camp #auschwitzuntoldincolour #channel4documentary #channel4 #documentary. program begins 42:04 this moderated discussion will examine the consequences and historical antecedents of immigrant detention in the united states. the horrors of nazi concentration camps during the second world war were and remain shocking almost beyond comprehension. now, new research has ralph hauenstein, first us officer into german concentration camps, dachau germany. this lecture took place on november 12, 2020 and was part of the 2020 21 harriet and kenneth kupferberg holocaust center (khc) and national endowment the tour is about the function of the barracks in the dachau concentration camp. in addition, during the tour our guide will talk about the history of these buildings


John Grindrod: Resuming the tale of a true liberator

For Dan Dougherty, the 73 years that have gone by since he was a 20-year-old Army staff sergeant in World War II, no doubt, have passed in a few blinks of a single eyelid, but the highly decorated Minnesota-born and current Fairfield, California, resident still can recall clearly that morning after his C Company arose after sleeping in a stand of woods outside Munich when his commanding officer, 1st Lt. Bert V. Edmunds, told his young platoon that C Company had special orders to liberate the Nazi concentration camp outside of the city of Dachau.

Recalls Dan, “My recollection is that we arrived at Dachau Concentration Camp between 3 and 4 p.m., but others remember it as earlier. We didn’t know the name of the place, and even if we’d been told, it would not have meant anything. None of us had ever heard of Dauchau.”

Now, at first glance, that might seem odd, but remember, it’s only when viewed through the prism of time that mankind’s history is recorded and events and places assume their importance.

Approaching Dachau on a road from the southwest, Dan recalls first seeing boxcars and gondola cars on the railroad track near the camp’s perimeter.

“When we reached the cars, the doors were open, and we made the horrifying discovery that they contained the most emaciated corpses imaginable,” Dan said. “The bodies were nothing but skin and bones, still mostly in the remnants of their striped uniforms. There’s no way to prepare for such an experience. We would stare and then walk to the next car and stare some more. The eyes on some of the bodies were open, and they stared right back at us. No one had anything profound to say, just an occasional ‘My God!’ Turned out there were 39 cars with 2,310 corpses, an average of almost sixty bodies per car!”

In his three-part memoir, Dan went on to explain that at the time, he and his fellow soldiers knew little about those boxcars beyond the horrors to be found inside. History would later tell him that the train originally left Buchenwald, the terrible Nazi concentration camp outside the town of Weimar, headed for the large slave camp in Flossenburg until the train was rerouted to Dachau three weeks after it left. It had just arrived the day before C Company arrived at Dauchau. History has dubbed it the Buchenwald-Dauchau Death Train, one that arrived at Dauchau with few survivors among the 2,310 corpses of those who had died as the train rumbled over rails.

Dan recalls the reactions of the prisoners who’d survived Dauchau’s horrors through the words of his platoon squad leader, Leonard Parker, who remembers the scene when they entered through the camp’s main gate, the one with the inscription, “Arbeit macht frei,” translated, “Work brings freedom.”

“There came a flood of human skeletons…” Dan recalled. “They fell on the ground at our feet and kissed our boots and grabbed our hands and kissed them.”

After the prisoners found out Parker was himself a Jew, about 50 Jewish prisoners encircled, hugging and kissing him.

In his account of the liberation, Dan includes several statistics — 31,432 initially found alive in various stages of generally poor health. Among the survivors, the largest nationality represented was the 9,082 Poles. Sadly, some, Dan recalls an estimated number of 2,500, were too far gone to survive, despite the efforts of the Army doctor in charge of post-liberation Dachau, Lt. Marcus J. Smith, and his staff.

Dan admits that in the rounding up of the SS guards who’d yet to flee, there were some breakdowns in discipline and some executions. There was an investigation, but no charges were ever filed..

Recalls Dan, “There was a strong presumption the (investigation) was quashed by Gen. George Patton when commanding the Army of Occupation of Bavaria after the war.”

Dan also recalls going into a single-family home with other C Company soldiers, a house once occupied by a senior officer and his family inside the camp’s once-electrified fences, and seeing upholstered furniture and framed pictures on the walls and, upstairs, a children’s nursery with toys on the floor and a crucifix on the wall, and all were struck by the incongruity and irony of it all.

By the time C Company reached the perimeter at the nearby satellite camp at Allach, the guards had already fled, and the celebration of the 9,000 prisoners, many of whom were conscripted laborers at a nearby BMW plant that assembled engines for the Luftwaffe, the German aerial warfare branch, was similar to that of Dauchau. One GI, recalls Dan, Leonard Zankel, was even hoisted onto the shoulders of prisoners in much the same fashion as a winning coach after a big gridiron victory.

Unlike so many of his comrades in arms who paid the ultimate price of war along the Siegfried Line or in Nuremburg or Aschaffenburg or countless other places where bullets flew and bombs detonated, Dan P. Dougherty, Army Serial Number 171440035, survived.

And, to him and so many others, we all owe such a debt of gratitude. Dan never forgot those who fought and died who were left behind or those who returned with him to the United States in September of 1945 on a ship that sailed from LeHarve, France. And, that’s evidenced by his writing, editing and publishing accounts of the experiences of C Company and tracking the whereabouts of those in the platoon who made it home. His regular newsletters were called “Second Platoon,” writings which he did from 1996 through 2003.

Dan’s entire account of the liberation of Dauchau and its satellite camp at Allach, the same writing he attached to me in an email, can be found online at http://j.mp/2KA2kJj.

On behalf of everyone reading this column, thank you, Staff Sgt. Dan P. Dougherty, for you and C Company’s incredible service.


The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And Its Liberation by US Troops

When the men of the 42nd “Rainbow” Division rolled into the Bavarian town of Dachau at the tail end of World War II, they expected to find an abandoned training facility for Adolf Hitler’s elite SS forces, or maybe a POW camp.

What they discovered instead would be seared into their memories for as long as they lived—piles of emaciated corpses, dozens of train cars filled with badly decomposed human remains, and perhaps most difficult to process, the thousands of “walking skeletons” who had managed to survive the horrors of Dachau, the Nazi’s first and longest-operating concentration camp.

“Almost none of the soldiers, from generals down to privates, had any concept of what a concentration camp really was, the kind of condition people would be in when they got there, and the level of slavery and oppression and atrocities that the Nazis had perpetrated,” says John McManus, a professor of U.S. military history at the Missouri University of Science and Technology, and author of Hell Before Their Very Eyes: US Soldiers Liberate Concentration Camps in Germany, April 1945.

The liberation of Dachau by American troops on April 26, 1945, wasn’t the first such deliverance by Allied troops. The Soviets had found and freed what remained of Auschwitz and other death camps months earlier. But the wrenching images and first-hand testimonies recorded by Dachau’s shocked liberators brought the horrors of the Holocaust home to America.

Dachau Became a Model for Nazi Concentration Camps

American soldiers standing at the main entrance to the Dachau Concentration Camp, 1945. Thousands of prisoners entered these doors and never came out alive.

When Dachau opened in 1933, the notorious Nazi war criminal Heinrich Himmler christened it as “the first concentration camp for political prisoners.” And that’s what Dachau was in its early years, a forced labor detention camp for those judged as “enemies” of the National Socialist (Nazi) party: trade unionists, communists, and Democratic Socialists at first, but eventually Roma (Gypsies), homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses and of course, Jews.

The cruelly efficient operation of Dachau was largely the brainchild of SS officer Theodor Eike, who instituted a “doctrine of dehumanization” based on slave labor, corporal punishment, flogging, withholding food and summary executions of anyone who tried to escape. The Dachau prisoners labored under brutal conditions tearing down a massive WWI-era munitions factory and then constructing the barracks and offices that would serve as the chief training ground for the SS.

The prisoners even built their own “protective custody camp,” the euphemistically named concentration camp within the sprawling Dachau complex, composed of 32 squalid barracks surrounded by an electrified barbed-wire fence, a ditch and seven guard towers. Prisoners were subjected to medical experiments, including injections of malaria and tuberculosis, and the untold thousands that died from hard labor or torture were routinely burned in the on-site crematorium.

Forged into the iron gate separating the concentration camp from the rest of Dachau were the taunting words, Arbeit Macht Frei (“Work sets you free”). Dachau was such a success for the Nazis that Eike was promoted to inspector general of all German concentration camps, for which Dachau became the model.

After the events of Kristallnacht (“night of broken glass”), in which Jewish synagogues, businesses and homes were destroyed by Nazi mobs across Germany, a greater and greater number of Jews were held at Dachau. On the eve of the American liberation of Dachau, there were 67,665 registered prisoners at the concentration camp and roughly a third of them were Jewish.

First the Smell, Then the Death Train

Dozens of dead bodies were discovered by American troops on a train in April 1945 in Dachau, Germany.

For the unwitting U.S. infantrymen who marched into Dachau in late April 1945, the first clue that something was terribly wrong was the smell. Some soldiers thought they were downwind from a chemical factory, while others compared the acrid odor to the sickening smell of feathers being burned off a plucked chicken. None of their prior combat experiences prepared them for what lay ahead.

Weeks earlier, Nazi commanders at Buchenwald, another notorious German concentration camp, packed at least 3,000 prisoners into 40 train cars in order to hide them from the approaching Allied armies. The train was supposed to arrive in Dachau a few days later, but the tortuous odyssey ended up lasting three weeks. All but a quarter of the train’s 3,000 passengers died from starvation, dehydration, asphyxiation and disease. The survivors were herded into the concentration camp while thousands of fallen corpses were left to rot on the railway cars.

“If you’re a U.S. soldier arriving at Dachau, you’d almost certainly see the ‘death train’ first,” says McManus.

Bodies ‘Stacked Like Cordwood’

This pile of clothes belonged to prisoners of the Dachau concentration camp, liberated by troops of the U.S. Seventh Army. Slave laborers were compelled to strip before they were killed .


The abhorrent sights and smells of the death train left many American soldiers physically sick and emotionally shell shocked, but it was only a taste of the horrors awaiting them inside the actual camp. In the weeks leading up to the liberation, the Nazis had shipped in prisoners from across Germany and as far away as Auschwitz. Like the survivors of the Buchenwald death train, these new arrivals were starving and riddled with diseases like typhus.

The Dachau prison guards packed the new arrivals into the already overcrowded barracks, cramming up to 1,600 men into buildings designed for 250. Starvation and disease tore through the camp, claiming the lives of thousands of prisoners just days before the liberation. The Nazis tried to cremate as many of these bodies as they could before abandoning Dachau, but there were too many. Another 7,000 Dachau prisoners, mostly Jews, were sent on a death march to Tegernsee in the south, during which stragglers were shot and thousands of others died from exhaustion.

When the American GIs entered the concentration camp, they found piles of naked corpses, their skin stretched tight across impossibly malnourished bodies. In interview after interview, the soldiers described the dead bodies being “stacked like cordwood,” a metaphor that unintentionally robbed the fallen prisoners of their remaining humanity. But for the soldiers to think of those bodies as fully human at that moment would have been too much to bear.

“Everywhere you turn is just this horror of bodies, and people near death or in a state of complete decrepitude that you can’t even process it,” says McManus.

In a Fit of Rage, Soldiers Gun Down Nazi Prisoners

American troops directing the liberation operations of the Dachau concentration camp in April 1945.

When the American soldiers of the 45th “Thunderbird” Division stumbled upon the death train, it was like lighting a fuse that couldn’t be snuffed out. The men of the 45th had been in combat for 500 days and thought they had witnessed every grisly atrocity that war could throw at them. But then there was this train filled with innocent bodies, their eyes and mouths open as if crying out for mercy. Many of the American soldiers broke down in sobs. Others seethed with red-hot rage.

When four German officers emerged from the woods holding up a white handkerchief, Lt. William Walsh marched them into one of the box cars littered with corpses and shot them with his pistol. When the mortally wounded Germans cried out in agony, other American GIs finished the job.

Inside Dachau, it only got worse. An estimated 50 to 125 SS officers and assorted German military, including hospital personnel, were rounded up in a coal yard. Walsh called for a machine gun, rifles and a Tommy gunner. When the soldiers began loading a belt of bullets into the machine gun, the German prisoners stood up and began to move toward their American captors. That’s when Walsh allegedly took out his pistol and yelled, “Let them have it!”

After a 30-second flurry of gunfire, at least 17 German prisoners lay dead in the Dachau coal yard.

“I will tell you, as someone who has studied this in a great deal of depth, that this is pretty much the only time that American soldiers do this among many, many liberations in many places,” says McManus. “The separating factor is leadership, because you have a company commander who is so deeply upset at what he’s seen that he just loses it. And when a leader loses it, soldiers are going to lose it, too.”

Unequipped to Help the Survivors

Prisoners of Dachau concentration camp shortly after the camp's liberation.

Chief among the many traumatic experiences that awaited the liberators at Dachau was encountering the surviving prisoners who numbered around 32,000. “Walking skeletons” was the only way to describe their condition of extreme malnourishment and illness. Ridden with typhus and lice, the overwhelmed prisoners grabbed at their liberators’ uniforms in disbelief that their tortuous ordeal was finally over.

Unprepared and ignorant of how to care for people in such advanced stages of starvation, the soldiers pulled out their C-rations and Hershey bars and gave everything over to the skeletal prisoners, who gorged themselves on the food. Tragically, their digestive systems simply couldn’t handle solid food.

“Decades later, some of these soldiers were racked with guilt over the revulsion they first felt when seeing the prisoners, and then for overfeeding them,” says McManus. “They were killing them with kindness.”

Further compounding the guilt was the fact that the American soldiers couldn't let the liberated prisoners actually leave Dachau. They had to be nursed to health first, which would take months, and then they would need a place to go. Tragically, some of the Jewish prisoners liberated from Dachau languished in displaced persons camps for years before being allowed to emigrate to places like the United States, the UK and Palestine.

From Liberators to Witnesses

After liberation of Dachau concentration camp, prisoners showed where they were forced to bury their comrades every day.

Most of the American GIs who liberated Dachau only stayed for a few days before moving on to other missions. The care of the survivors was entrusted to combat medical units, while teams of engineers were charged with burying bodies and cleaning up the camp.

Word of what happened at places like Dachau and Buchenwald spread quickly through the Allied ranks, and many soldiers and officers came to the concentration camps in the days and weeks following liberation to bear witness to the Nazi atrocities. Adolf Hitler committed suicide a day after Dachau was liberated and German defeat was all but assured, but for many soldiers, seeing Dachau for themselves gave the war a new meaning. They weren’t just fighting an enemy they were fighting evil itself.

General Dwight D. Eisenhower, along with Generals George Patton and Omar Bradley, visited the Ohrdurf concentration camp on April 12, 1945, a week after it was liberated. It was as if Eisenhower knew that the Nazi atrocities of the Holocaust would one day be dismissed as “exaggerations” or denied outright.

“The things I saw beggar description,” said Eisenhower. “The visual evidence and the verbal testimony of starvation, cruelty and bestiality were so overpowering as to leave me a bit sick . . I made the visit deliberately, in order to be in a position to give first-hand evidence of these things if ever, in the future, there develops a tendency to charge these allegations merely to ‘propaganda.’”


The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And Its Liberation - HISTORY

By Dan Dougherty

BACKSTORY: Dan Dougherty graduated from Central High School in Austin, Minnesota in June 1943 and was immediately activated from the Army Reserve. After four months of infantry basic training at Fort McClellan and five months in the Army Specialized Training Program (ASTP) at St. Louis University, he was assigned to the 44th Infantry Division.

When the ASTP folded in March 1944, he completed precombat training at Camp Phillips near Salina, Kansas, and sailed for Cherbourg from the Boston POE on September 5, 1944. The 44th started fighting in the Seventh Army sector near Luneville, France, on October 18, 1944, with Pfc. Dougherty serving as BAR gunner in the 2nd Platoon, K Company, 324th Regiment.

When six companies of the 157th Regiment of the 45th Infantry Division were captured in Alsace (Operation Nordwind) in January 1945, 180 sergeants from other Seventh Army divisions were immediately transferred to the 157th to help reform those units Dan and Leonard Parker were two of the 12 sergeants from the 44th Division who joined C Company at that time. On March 18, 1945, Dan was wounded during fighting on the Siegfried Line he returned to the unit from the hospital on April 2 and thus missed crossing the Rhine along with much of the Aschaffenburg battle, but still saw plenty of action, and saw the Dachau concentration camp first-hand. This is his story.

We were with the tanks when C Company hit the Siegfried Line on the morning of March 18, 1945. They had to stop at the huge tank ditch but kept blasting away at any bunkers they could see. We climbed in and out of the ditch, crawled under barbed wire, walked through the cement dragon’s teeth (perhaps this before the ditch, I don’t remember), and then proceeded toward the bunkers.

We would put a hand grenade through the gun slits of the bunkers and keep going. Every now and then, we entered a bunker from the back door. We did use the German hand grenades we found, but I never saw a live German soldier. We made very good progress for maybe 45-60 minutes, and then came the mother of all artillery barrages. We were in heavy woods, and there were many, many tree bursts. The morning reports for March 18-20 list 35 casualties for C Company, including five KIA.

The author, Dan Dougherty, left German-born Fred Abraham acted as a translator for C Company, 157th. (Author photos)

I was walking when I felt a light thud in my left foot. This was probably about the time the barrage ended. There was no pain or blood, but I sat down in the middle of the Siegfried Line and took off my shoe and found a slit in the tread near the ball of my foot. I was wearing two pairs of socks and there was about a ¾-inch slit through each.

It’s difficult to see the bottom of your foot, but I could make out a small wound that looked black and blue with no pain or bleeding. I don’t remember, but I probably took my sulfa pills. When you get shrapnel in the ball of your foot while walking, I always assumed it had to come from a very low-grade mortar that had landed nearby. I can’t even find the scar today.

Before heading back, I tried to assist a GI who was down and moaning. I asked him if he’d taken his sulfa pills, and he said no. I was about to help him do that when I had the presence of mind to ask him where he was hit. It turned out to be a nasty wound in the middle of his back so we skipped the pills. I don’t remember who he was and would be surprised if he survived.

Men of the 45th’s 157th Infantry Regiment climb a snowy hill during winter fighting in Vosges Mountains of northeastern France, December 1944.

While walking back to the battalion aid station, I hitched a ride in a jeep. I was in the front next to the driver, and a GI in the back seat was crying very hard with no apparent wound. It turned out to be Private Floyd Bonner from another platoon who had become very distraught when his identical twin brother Lloyd was severely wounded.

Floyd probably returned to the unit that day or the next because there’s no mention in the morning report of his absence. Floyd and Lloyd had joined C Company in the fall of 1944 and missed being captured at Reipertswiller, France, because both were out with trench foot. (Floyd was killed at Aschaffenburg on March 29, 1945, and is buried at the U.S. cemetery at St. Avold, France. Lloyd died in 1988.)

My experience in the field hospital was hilarious. When the nurse came to administer the anesthetic, I told her I really wanted the shrapnel as a souvenir. “Sure, soldier,” she replied. No shrapnel was saved. When they gave me the Purple Heart, I wrapped my two socks with the slits around it and went to the Red Cross tent to mail it home. “I want these socks as a souvenir.” “Sure, soldier.” But they were never sent.

To give you an idea of how seriously I was wounded, I played ping-pong two days after having surgery on my left foot. Someone with authority must have seen me, because the next day I was heading back to the replacement depot. Of all the C Company casualties in the Siegfried Line, I was the first one back to the unit. We’d been at full strength on March 18. On April 2, I brought the second platoon number up to 13 (a platoon was normally about 40 men). Ben Ewing was the only sergeant not hit, and he was now platoon sergeant.

Snipers in Nuremberg

On April 15, 1945, in the closing days of World War II in Europe, Seventh Army troops (the 3rd, 42nd, and 45th Infantry Divisions) had surrounded Nuremberg, and if anyone but Hitler had been in charge, the city would have been surrendered. It was defended, and so the first day, we (C Company, 157th Regiment, 45th Division) sat on the bluffs and watched planes of the Army Air Forces repeatedly dive-bomb the city with no opposition.

The author took this photo of his platoon in a small German village near Nuremberg, spring 1945. At the top in the center is Corporal Edwin Wilkin, who would be awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously, while trying to take Nuremberg eight days later. (Author photo)

Four days later, the three divisions converged in the center of Nuremberg, and that night C Company hiked back to the suburbs to find a standing building in which we could sleep.

A big problem for infantry troops in Nuremberg was snipers, and one victim was Corporal Edwin G. Wilkin of our platoon, who was killed in action. He posthumously received the Medal of Honor for his actions earlier in the battle of the Siegfried Line.

In 1948, when Wilkin’s remains were returned to his home town of Longmeadow, Massachusetts, his mother called to invite me to attend the Memorial Day service, but I was in the middle of college finals in Minnesota and couldn’t go. Army Chief of Staff General Omar N. Bradley spoke, and John Scherer and James Crane represented our platoon as honorary pallbearers.

The 45th (“Thunderbird”) and 42nd (“Rainbow”) Infantry Divisions left Nuremberg on April 22 and were heading for Munich with the goal of getting there as soon as possible so as to deny the Germans time to organize a defense as they had at Nuremberg. The German military effort was collapsing, and we often rode tanks or tank destroyers just to keep up.

Privates Virgil S. Kay and Joseph Marshall were two of 12 replacements who joined C Company on April 20, and they were both wounded on the 25th Kay died in the hospital on May 6. He had served just five days in C Company and was our last fatality of the war.

DUKWs Crossing the Danube

We arrived at the Danube on the morning of the 26th. The bridges in our area were blown, and while we waited for “ducks” (DUKW was the Army’s designation) to take us across, I wrote to my parents, “Well, here I am humming the Blue Danube Waltz while looking at the Danube River. Not supposed to tell you where I am, but our lieutenant never reads the mail so I’m not limited much.” (One duty of platoon leaders was to censor the outgoing mail, but by that time it was obvious that the war was ending and our lieutenant had me, the platoon guide, signing off for him on the envelopes.)

While crossing the river that morning, the engine conked out in the duck in which my group was riding, and we quite literally became a sitting duck as we floated deeper into possibly hostile territory on the swiftly flowing Danube.

The engineer eventually restarted the engine and got us across, but we had traveled quite a ways downstream and felt lucky not to have been shot at. There were about seven or eight of us GIs, and we didn’t locate the 45th Division until the afternoon of the next day. I never felt good about the fact that, hungry and without food, we stole K-rations from another division that day.

Soldiers from the 157th Regiment practice crossing a river in a DUKW during training. While crossing the Danube in a DUKW, the engine died and Dougherty and his squad found themselves drifting into enemy territory.

“I Company’s Gone Berserk!”: Visiting the Dachau Concentration Camp

By April 28, we were nearing Munich and that night we slept in some woods, which was unusual because by that time we were almost insisting on sleeping in homes. When we assembled in the morning to get our rations, our commanding officer, 1st Lt. Bert V. Edmunds, said, “Gather around, guys. I have to give you special orders.”

Nothing like that had ever happened before, and I remember his telling us the division was in the vicinity of a concentration camp and it was important that witnesses be kept alive.

This meant nothing to us. We didn’t know what a concentration camp was, and besides, C Company was in reserve that day. We had an easy stop-and-go morning but about 1:00, our company runner came to our platoon. I was standing by him when he told us, “We’re going into a concentration camp to relieve I Company because I Company’s gone berserk!”

[Editor’s note: I Company, 157th, had been the first unit to stumble onto the Dachau concentration camp, 10 miles northwest of Munich, that day, and had been shocked by the scenes of death all around. Unprepared for such an encounter, they rounded up a group of SS soldiers who were guarding the camp after the regular guards fled and lined them up in the camp’s coal yard. A trigger-happy GI opened fire on the SS men, followed by volleys of fire from some of the other I Company troops. Within seconds, 17 SS men were dead and others wounded.]

So, we had to hike over to the 3rd Battalion sector. My recollection is that we arrived at the Dachau concentration camp between 3 and 4 pm, but others remember it as earlier. We didn’t know the name of the place, and even if we’d been told, it would not have meant anything. None of us had ever heard of Dachau.

Following railroad tracks into the Dachau concentration camp, members of the 3rd Battalion, 157th Infantry Regiment came across a trainload of more than 2,000 corpses who had died en route from Buchenwald.

On Sunday, April 29, 1945, we approached the Dachau concentration camp on a road from the southwest. Up ahead we saw boxcars and gondola cars on the railroad track that paralleled the road on our left. When we reached the cars, the doors were open, and we made the horrifying discovery that they contained the most emaciated corpses imaginable. The bodies were nothing but skin and bones, still mostly in the remnants of their striped uniforms. There’s no way to prepare for such an experience. We would stare and then walk to the next car and stare some more.

The eyes on some of the bodies were open and they stared right back at us. No one had anything profound to say, just an occasional “My God!” Turned out there were 39 cars with 2,310 corpses. That’s an average of almost 60 bodies per car.

At the time, of course, we knew nothing about the origins of the train or what had happened, but we now know the whole story and that train belonged as much to the history of Buchenwald as Dachau.

The Buchenwald-Dachau Death Train

In brief, the train had left Buchenwald near Weimar on April 7 with 4,500 prisoners jammed into 55 cars headed for Flossenbürg (a large slave-labor camp where noted pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhöffer and the head of German military intelligence, Admiral Wilhelm Canaris, were executed on April 9), but during the trip the train was rerouted to Dachau where, after a three-week journey, it arrived on the 28th, the day before we arrived. It is now referred to as the Buchenwald-Dachau Death Train. The Dachau commandant’s journal for April 28 listed 816 survivors. They must have crawled out of the boxcars. (Get more first-hand accounts of the Second World War by subscribing to WWII History magazine.)

Once inside the camp, our platoon leader, James Penny, said, “Okay, guys, fan out and look for guards.” Some went right, some straight ahead, and I went to the left with Jim Killingbeck and others.

[Editor’s note: Shortly after I Company arrived at the railroad gate where the train and 2,310 corpses were, advance elements of the 42nd Division reached the camp’s main gate—neither organization knew the other was there—and took the surrender of the camp from an SS officer who had been left in charge.]

In the course of rounding up several hundred guards, some of the 45th and 42nd Division troops—officers and GIs alike—had a breakdown in discipline that day in different unrelated incidents, but there was a lot of provocation. I’ve never seen evidence that more than about 30 guards were killed without benefit of a trial.

Members of a Hitler Youth group are forced to view the bodies in the train as a way of telling them, “This is what your countrymen did.”

Shooting of the Dachau Guards

There was an investigation of the killing of the guards but no charges were ever filed. There’s a strong presumption that the report was quashed by General George Patton when he commanded the Army of Occupation of Bavaria after the war. At a different time in a different war, there might have been a prosecution but at the conclusion of World War II in Europe, during which the evils of the Nazi tyranny had been laid bare, there was no interest in pursuing the matter.

We soon came to another amazing sight—about a dozen reporters in civilian clothes milling around SS corpses in what turned out to be the camp’s coal yard. In anticipation of the liberation, the Army had assembled this media group behind the lines and had brought them in even before all the guards had been rounded up. While we were there, a corporal in our group crawled over the corpses and cut off a finger from one. He wanted an SS ring for a souvenir!

“Hey, you can’t do that,” a reporter yelled, but the deed was done. Later, there was an investigation of the shooting of the Dachau guards and an excerpt from the report on the coal yard reads, “I found 17 bodies … a finger had been completely severed from one body from another body a finger had been severed at the second joint.” Maybe our corporal got two rings!

[Author’s note: Concentration camps were run and staffed by SS troops. SS is short for Schutzstaffel, which translates as protection squad. It was originally formed in the 1920s to protect Hitler at Nazi rallies, but after Heinrich Himmler was appointed Reichsführer SS in 1929, the goals and functions were constantly expanded to the point that the SS became one of the most evil and efficient killing machines the world has ever known. Concentration camp guards were originally organized as SS-Death’s Head units, and we had fought against Waffen-SS infantry troops in France and Germany.]

Private Fred Abraham was a C Company runner and interpreter for our commander, Bert Edmunds. Fred had been born and raised in Fulda, Germany. He said, “I had complete mastery of the German language, and I was able to read and translate the German paybooks (Soldbuch) which were written in the Gothic script and listed all units they had belonged to then and in the past.” Edmunds gave Fred a camera at Dachau and told him to take pictures.

Leonard Parker, a squad leader in our 3rd Platoon, wrote to his family: “We came upon the camp enclosure, and out of the gate came three prisoners…. The first one yelled at me, ‘Boy are we glad to see you,’ and you could have knocked me over with a feather because I hadn’t expected anyone to yell at me in English. He was a U.S. Army officer who had parachuted into France three months before D-Day on a secret mission and had been captured by the Gestapo and sent to Dachau.” (This was Lieutenant Rene J. Guiraud, a member of the Office of Strategic Services, who had been arrested as a spy, and who was one of six Americans liberated at Dachau.)

Leonard continued: “I guess the rest of the prisoners were waiting to see if we were all right, because then came a flood of human skeletons…. They fell on the ground at our feet and kissed our boots and grabbed for our hands and kissed them.”

Later, “A Jewish prisoner came up to me and asked me if it were true that there were Jewish soldiers in the American Army. When I told him I was a Jewish ‘unteroffizier,’ he nearly went mad. Soon, I had about 50 Jewish men and women around me hugging and kissing me.”

I should mention that, after the war, Leonard was one of C Company’s most distinguished alums. He finished his education at the University of Minnesota and M.I.T., and became an important architect in Minneapolis. Leonard Parker Associates designed buildings all over the world, and Leonard was professor emeritus at the university. He died in 2011. (He was originally Staff Sergeant Leonard S. Popuch in C Company, but after the war he changed his name to Parker.)

The Dachau Death Toll

I spent the rest of our daylight hours at Dachau maintaining a post on the west side of this huge camp, and during that time, I saw our men take only two guards to the rear. One building just over the wall from the coal yard had a large red cross painted on its roof. This was the hospital for the SS troops, and when I walked through it, there were no patients or medical personnel present. (Killingbeck found a Nazi flag in the hospital.)

I never did see the confinement area where the prisoners were held, the crematorium, or the mounds of naked corpses, which the soldiers found more horrifying than the boxcars.

Altogether at Dachau, 31,432 prisoners (3,918 of whom were French) were liberated alive in various stages of ill health, and thousands of emaciated corpses were found. The largest group of survivors was 9,082 Polish prisoners, including 96 women and 830 Catholic priests.

Many prisoners were so far gone they didn’t last long. The day after liberation, the Army conscripted adults in the town of Dachau, trucked them to the camp, and made them handle the bodies for burial. Lieutenant Marcus J. Smith, the Army doctor in charge of post-liberation Dachau, reported that after May 5, more than 3,000 bodies were cremated or buried.

The bodies of SS guards at the camp are laid out along the moat surrounding the prisoner enclosure. Some of these may have been killed by the prisoners themselves when they heard the Americans coming.

“A Mind-Boggling Experience”

In an aside, in the 1990s I developed a warm friendship with Professor John M. Steiner at Sonoma State University. As a teenage prisoner from Prague, he had survived Theresienstadt, Auschwitz (where he lost his mother), and Dachau, and after the war he became a renowned Holocaust scholar. His Auschwitz number 168904 was tattooed on his left arm and he had worn his Dachau number 142095 on his uniform. After terrible experiences in various locations where he lost several toes, John had arrived at Dachau in a boxcar in January 1945, and speaking for the few survivors, brazenly told the SS to “either give us food or shoot us,” and they received some rations.

Steiner spent his four months at Dachau in the infirmary where more toes were amputated without anesthesia by fellow Czech prisoner Dr. Franz Blaha, who later testified at the Nuremberg Trials. (John told me he is the 19-year-old prisoner, who spoke Czech, German, and English, in the photo of the Dachau crematorium with Maj. Gen. Robert T. Frederick, commanding officer of the 45th Division. John died in 2014.)

For decades, I wondered why we never did guard duty that night at Dachau. I eventually learned that in the evening we who had relieved I Company in the afternoon were in turn relieved by them, and it seems the other platoons of C Company had hiked back to the town of Dachau and slept in homes. My platoon slept in the camp in a single-family home that had housed a senior SS officer’s family. Outside were flowerbeds and inside were upholstered furniture and framed pictures on the walls.

Most of us were about 19 years of age and knew we’d had a mind-boggling experience. We couldn’t get over the contrast between our quarters and the total depravity outside, and we talked until midnight.

Platoon Sergeant Ben Ewing remembered going upstairs in the home and finding a children’s nursery with toys on the floor and a crucifix on the wall. It was a tough day. That night I learned from the other guys that there was much of the camp I hadn’t seen, and I was determined to have a look around in the morning, but the opportunity never came. They wanted C Company back with the 1st Battalion, and we were out of there before dawn the next day to resume the attack on Munich.

Celebrations at an Allach Satellite Camp

We left the Dachau concentration camp before dawn on Monday, April 30, heading for Munich, and were hiking briskly when later that morning we came to a tall, picket fence. This turned out to be the perimeter of the Dachau satellite camp at Allach where the guards had fled. (Allach was seven miles from Dachau and was the largest of Dachau’s 94 subcamps located throughout Bavaria and down into Austria. Other parts of Allach were liberated that morning by 42nd Division troops.)

Two Dachau prisoners exact their revenge on an SS camp guard after knocking him to the ground. Visible in the background are the bodies of dead and wounded guards shot by the members of the 45th Division, enraged by what they saw after they entered the camp.

When the prisoners realized that we were the U.S. Army, the celebration began. We promptly gave them all of our K-rations, candy, and cigarettes. One GI threw a cigar over the fence and when the fight for it ended, the cigar was in shreds. We also retrieved potatoes from a nearby cellar and threw them over the fence to the prisoners. I spoke with an older prisoner from Warsaw who told me that he was a doctor. He said the guards had treated him deferentially, and he was not worked as hard.

Both Allach prisoners and conscripted laborers had worked in the nearby BMW plant, which had assembled Stuka engines for the Luftwaffe. In recent years, I met Peter Van Sehaik, who was from Rotterdam, and I learned that during the war he was a conscripted worker at this BMW plant. Peter told me that one day a prisoner asked him for food, and at great risk to himself and the prisoner, he left bread where he knew the prisoner would find it.

“Andy’s” Story

A great human interest story began at Allach with the liberation of Andor Deszöfe, a Jewish prisoner from Budapest, Hungary. He was befriended by Staff Sergeant William F. Sutton, a squad leader in our 3rd Platoon, and Bill talked for an hour that day with Andor, who spoke English well.

A few days later, Andor walked away from Allach and showed up at C Company in Munich, wanting to join the American Army and fight the Germans! Bill put a uniform on “Andy” who “served” four months in C Company until the day the regiment boarded the ship at Le Havre for the trip home. Bill considered smuggling him aboard but thought better of it.

Andor eventually emigrated to New York City where, aided by Paul Rodda (who had served as a private in Bill’s squad), he found and reconciled with his father (who had abandoned the family in Hungary). Andor married, raised a family, and had a successful business in New York City. He also reunited with Bill on many occasions there and in Georgia. Paul Rodda attended Andor’s wedding and remembered this from the reception: “I talked to a fellow who turned out to be an ex-SS trooper who had befriended Andy at Allach. Andy had kept in touch and had sent him airline tickets to come to the wedding. Go figure!”

housands of joyous prisoners cheer after being liberated by U.S. troops at the Dachau sub-camp at Allach.

[Author’s note: In 2009, I came across an Oregon woman on the Internet who was searching for her Jewish roots. She was looking for her father’s cousin, and the International Red Cross had tracked him from Hungary to Dachau, where he was known to have been liberated, but then the trail grew cold. The cousin’s name? Andor Deszöfe! By that time, Andor had died, but I put her in touch with Bill Sutton so she could contact the family.]

That afternoon at Allach, C Company was relieved by K Company, and we resumed the advance on Munich, which we approached with great apprehension. It was assumed Munich would be another Nuremberg, so we were delighted to learn the early units of the 45th and 42nd Divisions had met only scattered resistance that morning.

Later, I wrote to my folks, “We walked 18 kilometers from outside of Dachau to the middle of town, and I never took the gun off my shoulder.”

VE Day

At one point in Munich, we were walking on a boulevard that had a wide median strip that was strewn with German military paraphernalia. It seems that when the Wehrmacht and SS troops learned they would not have to defend the city, they changed into civvies and threw their uniforms and gear into the streets.

I remember April 30 as an exciting but easy day, and to my surprise I found in the morning report that Pfc. John W. Idol, Jr. was wounded. That would have been somewhere between Dachau and Munich (unless there’d been a delay in reporting). Like many of us, he had joined C Company in the last week of January 1945 when it was reformed (after losing so many members in Alsace in France), and he had gone unscathed through the Siegfried Line, Aschaffenburg, and Nuremberg. On what was effectively our final day in combat, Idol was C Company’s last casualty of World War II.

The next day, May 1, it was announced that the 45th Division would occupy Munich and our celebration began. On May 2, I wrote to my parents, “A guy just came in and said Generals Patch (Seventh Army) and Patton (Third Army) are about six blocks from here and are throwing the wildest party.”

On May 8, World War II in Europe officially ended. We occupied Munich for six weeks, and then after moving to the Augsburg area and Camp St. Louis near Reims, France, we sailed from Le Havre for the USA in early September.

The author was discharged from the Army on November 10, 1945. After the war, he attended Carleton College (BA) and Case Western Reserve University (MSSA) and had a career in insurance sales.

Between 1996 and 2003, Dan Dougherty published 23 issues of Second Platoon for veterans of C Company. Many issues contain articles and photos by soldiers, prisoners, and historians on the liberation of Dachau and Allach. Dan and his wife Norma have been married for 66 years and reside in Fairfield, California. They have three children and seven grandchildren.


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What happened to the senior Nazi leadership after the end

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  • Dachau concentration camp, located in the state of Bavaria, Germany, was the first concentration camp established by the Nazi regime
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Dachau concentration camp

Introduction. On March 22, 1933, a few weeks after Adolf Hitler had been appointed Reich Chancellor, a concentration camp for political prisoners was set up in Dachau. This camp served as a model for all later concentration camps and as a school of violence for the SS men under whose command it stood. In the twelve years of its existence over 200 . Located in southern Germany

One of the oldest Nazi concentration camps, Dachau is located approximately 15 km north west of Munich. Its establishment was announced by Heinrich Himmler on the 20th of March 1933, just under two months after the Nazis seized power. Two days later the first prisoners were brought to Dachau, mostly communists and social democrats The first concentration camp was Dachau, which was established on March 20, 1933, in the southern German town of the same name (10 miles northwest of Munich). Although Dachau was initially established to hold political prisoners of the Third Reich, only a minority of whom were Jews, Dachau soon grew to hold a large and diverse population of people targeted by the Nazis

Homepage KZ Gedenkstätte Dachau

Dachau, the first Nazi concentration camp in Germany, established on March 10, 1933, slightly more than five weeks after Adolf Hitler became chancellor. Built at the edge of the town of Dachau, about 12 miles north of Munich, it became the model and training center for all other SS-organized camps Koncentrační tábor Dachau (německy: Konzentrationslager Dachau či KZ-Dachau) byl první nacistický koncentrační tábor určený pro politické vězně. Nacházel se na pozemku opuštěné muniční továrny poblíž města Dachau, které leží přibližně 16 km severozápadně od Mnichova v jižním Německu When Dachau opened in 1933, the notorious Nazi war criminal Heinrich Himmler christened it as the first concentration camp for political prisoners Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau) was the first of the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intended to hold politic..

During the Dachau liberation reprisals, German prisoners of war were killed by U.S. soldiers and concentration camp internees at the Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945, during World War II.It is unclear how many SS members were killed in the incident but most estimates place the number killed at around 35-50. In the days before the camp's liberation, SS guards at the camp had forced. Dachau concentration camp, located in the state of Bavaria, Germany, was the first concentration camp established by the Nazi regime. On April 29, 1945, Dachau was liberated by the U.S seventh Army's 45th Infantry Division The First Nazi Concentration Camp. Adolf Hitler was named chancellor of Germany on the 30th of January 1933. Just seven weeks later the first concentration camp in Germany was established. This camp was a short distance outside of Munich beside the town of Dachau CriticalPast is an archive of historic footage. The vintage footage in this video has been uploaded for research purposes, and is presented in unedited form.

Dachau Concentration Camp: Facts and Memorial - HISTOR

Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Walking Tour with Guide from Munich by Train (From $35.45) Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich by Train (From $39.50) Full-Day Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich (From $33.33) Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich (From $34.56 The Dachau concentration camp was established in March 1933. It was the first regular concentration camp established by the National Socialist (Nazi) government. Heinrich Himmler, as police president of Munich, officially described the camp as the first concentration camp for political prisoners Dachau one of the first concentration camps established by the Nazis, was located in the small town of Dachau approximately 10 miles northwest of Munich. The location at Dachau was selected by the Nazis because it was the site of an empty munitions factory from World War One, which was ideal for the establishment of a camp

Dachau Holocaus

  1. The Dachau camp was a training center for SS concentration camp guards, and the camp's organization and routine became the model for all Nazi concentration camps. The camp was divided into two sections — the camp area and the crematoria area. The camp area consisted of 32 barracks, including one for clergy imprisoned for opposing the Nazi.
  2. Dachau Concentration Camp In 1933, the year in which Hitler declared himself Chancellor, Heinrich Himmler gave orders for the camp in Dachau to be built - making it Germany's first concentration camp. The main person responsible for organising the camp, which served as a blueprint for all later concentration camps, was Commandant Theodor.
  3. The Nazi government started the first concentration camp at Dachau, Germany in March of 1933.It has been renovated and preserved as a Holocaust memorial to those who suffered and died there between 1933 and its liberation in 1945. There are several tours from nearby Munich, although you can visit on your own, using public transportation.. The memorial is well-documented in English and you.
  4. Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Walking Tour with Guide from Munich by Train (From US$35.45) Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich by Train (From US$39.50) Full-Day Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich (From US$33.33) Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich (From US$34.56
  5. Dachau Concentration Camp was the first of the Nazi concentration camps. It is located near Munich, Germany. A visit here is an incredibly moving experience and a valuable history lesson. Here are some things you should know while planning your visit
  6. Hotels near Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, Dachau on Tripadvisor: Find 3,005 traveler reviews, 8,712 candid photos, and prices for 1,174 hotels near Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site in Dachau, Germany
  7. als, and anti-social people. Facts about Dachau Concentration Camp 4: the First Jews. In the early years, a few Jews entered the concentration camp due to violations of Laws

Dachau: The First Nazi Concentration Camp

  1. Dachau Concentration Camp: A Guide to the former Concentration Camp and Memorial Site. by Nicolas Simon Mitchell | Dec 31, 2013. 4.4 out of 5 stars 16. Kindle .00 $ 0. 00. Free with Kindle Unlimited membership Learn More Or $3.00 to buy. Paperback More Buying Choices $21.22 (3.
  2. Dachau Concentration Camp In 1933, the year in which Hitler declared himself Chancellor, Heinrich Himmler gave orders for the camp in Dachau to be built - making it Germany's first concentration camp. The main person responsible for organising the camp, which served as a blueprint for all later concentration camps, was Commandant Theodor Eicke, who described the camp as a school of violence for members of the SS
  3. Approximately 800.000 visitors annually visit the concentration camp memorial site in Dachau. To offer better service to this large number of visitors and be able to meet their needs a visitors' center was opened on April 4, 2009. Apart from a welcome desk and service area the new visitors' center also features a bookstore and a café, snack bar.
  4. Dachau was the first Concentration Camp to be created within the Nazi regime. Shortly after Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, the camp was established to contain political prisoners, such as Communists, Social Democrats and Trade Unionists. Created on the site of an ex-munitions factory outside Munich, Germany, people imprisoned in Dachau were used as slave labour to expand.
  5. als from Germany, Austria, and other occupied territories during the Third Reich

That day, U.S. troops marched in and liberated Dachau, what was the first and longest-running concentration camp of the Nazi regime. At the time, because Allied forces were tightening their grip on German forces, more and more prisoners were transferred to Dachau from camps nearer the front lines in April 1945 Dachau was the oldest concentration camp (see below) but it was chosen less for its historical interest than because its records are available without restriction, having been located at the United States National Archives and Records Administration and the United States Holocaust Museum

Dachau Definition, Location, & Facts Britannic

dachau concentration camp (bavaria, germany) - dachau concentration camp stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images Les troupes américaines dirigeant les opérations de libération du camp de concentration de Dachau en avril 1945, Allemagne Dachau, described by Heinrich Himmler as the first concentration camp for political prisoners, opened in March, 1933. It was mandated by the state that all communists were to be sent there, described as a necessity to ease the burden on the state prisons Searching Dachau Concentration Camp Records in One Step Stephen P. Morse and Peter Land. KL Dachau - Letter sent by an inmate from sub-camp of KL Dachau ( SS Arbeitslager Kaufbeuren )to his wife in Tirol in 1944 only 2 days before the Operation Overlord D Day $280.00

Koncentrační tábor Dachau - Wikipedi

The Dachau Concentration Camp is a must do in Germany. It is a beautifully kept camp with many interactive activities, such as small phones that, when picked up, recite certain prisoners' stories. Not recommended without a guide, that is a must as there is so much history that is not included un the audio tour, the audio tour does not do it justice In the afternoon at around 3 p.m. the novena to Karl Leisner was prayed in the Agony of Christ Chapel. August 12th is the 75th anniversary of his death. The association Blessed of Dachau Concentration Camp has agreed to do this. The chairwoman, Ms. Neudert, brought two new rollups and flyers. It was a small, ecumenical prayer group L'Amicale organise et participe à divers colloques, expositions, en relation avec les associations ou fondations de même nature, elle participe au Concours national de la Résistance et de la Déportation et organise régulièrement des voyages de lycéens dans les mémoriaux des camps de concentration du Struthof et de Dachau en Allemagne. Dans le cadre de cette mission, l'Amicale lutte activement contre la désinformation, les thèses révisionnistes et la dérive politicienne Dachau concentration camp. The Dachau concentration camp was established in 1933 and operated continuously until the end of the war in 1945. It was the first concentration camp of the Nazi regime and it is estimated that at least 188,000 prisoners were incarcerated there between 1933 and 1945. Transcript Culture The liberation of Dachau, 75 years ago. When US soldiers reached the gate of the Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945, they had no idea what horrors awaited them

Dachau. On 20 March 1933, just weeks after Hitler came to power in Germany, Himmler announced in the national press: On Wednesday 22 March 1933 the first concentration camp will be opened in the vicinity of Dachau. It can accommodate 5,000 people The capture of the notorious concentration camp near Dachau, where approximately 32,000 persons were liberated, was announce in yesterday's S.H.A.E.F. communiqué. Three hundred S.S. guards at the camp were quickly overcome it said. A whole battalion of Allied troops was needed to restrain the prisoners from excesses Dachau Concentration Camp Records Liste inter Dachau 1-5 from the Captured German Records Collection Project Developers: Joyce Field and Peter W. Landé Project Coordinator: Nolan Altman INTRODUCTION. This project was started as a result of discussions between Joyce Field and Peter W. Landé, a Holocaust researcher The Dachau concentration camp opened on March 22, 1933. It was the first SS-run camp for political prisoners under Hitler's regime and became a model for the many SS prison camps that followed

The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And

  • Dachau Concentration Camp (KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau) was one of the first of many concentration camps set up by the Nazis to imprison and murder certain groups as part of their campaign of genocide. Founded on 22 March 1933, a mere few weeks after Adolf Hitler became Chancellor of Germany, Dachau Concentration Camp was seen as an example for the SS as to how to run other such camps throughout Europe
  • March 22, 1933. Outside the town of Dachau, Germany, the SS (Schutzstaffel, Protection Squads) establishes its first concentration camp to incarcerate political opponents.Between 1933 and 1945, concentration camps (Konzentrationslager KL or KZ) were an integral feature of the Nazi regime.The number of prisoners incarcerated in Dachau during these years exceeded 188,000
  • On the 29 April 1945, the Dachau Concentration Camp was liberated, and more than 30,000 prisoners were freed. Visiting Dachau Memorial Site. Dachau Concentration Camp is open today as a memorial site. It is a sobering and thought-provoking experience, educating visitors on the horrors that took place during this dark period of world history
  • Dachau Concentration Camp was built in Nazi Germany as a model camp for other concentration camps. It mainly housed political prisoners, dissidents, and resistance fighters. The facility was designed to hold 5,000 prisoners. Population numbers fluctuated throughout the years, reaching peak capacity in 1944 at 78,635

1. Dachau concentration camp was the first of the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intended to hold political prisoners. Nazi Germany maintained concentration camps throughout the territories it controlled before and during the Second World War The Dachau Concentration Camp was the first of its kind opened in Germany by Adolf Hitler's Nazi government in 1933, and it served as a model for later concentration camps. Today, the camp is a memorial to the more than 32,000 people who died and the more than 200,000 who were imprisoned during the Nazi regime The concentration camp of Dachau, 10 miles northwest of Munich, was one of the first concentration camps in Nazi Germany. Built in March 1933, shortly after Adolf Hitler was appointed as Reich Chancellor, Dachau would serve as a model for all subsequent concentrations camps in the Third Reich The Dachau camp system grew to include nearly 100 sub-camps located throughout southern Germany and Austria. The main camp was liberated by U.S. forces on April 29, 1945

The Dachau Concentration Camp Complex. An installation to commemorate the skeletal bodies of people at the Dachau Concentration Camp. Dachau Concentration Camp is said to have held thousands of 'enemies of the state' - Jews, Communists, Socialists, homo-sexuals, and political prisoners from Poland, Yugoslavia and a number of other countries Dachau concentration camp (German language: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA: ) was the first of the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intended to hold political prisoners. It is located on the grounds of an abandoned munitions factory near the medieval town of Dachau, about 16 km (9.9 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of Bavaria, in southern Germany How To Get To Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. Dachau is located about 12 miles northwest of central Munich or 20 miles to the east of Munich International Airport. Take the S2 train from Munich to Dachau station, then the 726 bus to the site. If you are driving, the address of the parking area is 73 Alte Romerstrasse, 85221, Dachau The original Dachau Concentration Camp has been a memorial site and museum since 1965. A visit is commemorative, educational and a sobering experience. Dachau is the shocking legacy of the darkest part in German history Documents, photographs, and links to sites about the Dachau concentration camp, 1933-1945, and memorial site, 1945-2004. Created by history professor Harold Marcuse, author of Legacies of Dachau: The Uses and Abuses of a Concentration Camp, 1933-2001

Book your tickets online for Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, Dachau: See 6,193 reviews, articles, and 7,923 photos of Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, ranked No.1 on Tripadvisor among 15 attractions in Dachau Dachau Concentration Camp Posted at 5:00 AM by Brittany, on March 25, 2019. There are few moments in my life that have touched me on such a deep level that words could not be formed, and breath was sucked from my lungs. Moments where emotions are felt so strongly that tears well up in my eyes and knots are felt in my throat Dachau Concentration Camp was the first ever Nazi concentration camp in what would become a total of 44,000 camps and similar incarceration centers. It was used as a Nazi training facility for SS camp guards. Because of its success, was used as a model for all concentration camps built afterwards

Dachau Concentration Camp - YouTub

  • Visit the Dachau Memorial, the site of the first German Nazi concentration camp. See the former gas chambers, barracks and cells and learn more about Duration: 5 hour
  • Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA:) was the first Nazi concentration camp opened in Germany, located on the grounds of an abandoned munitions factory near the medieval town of Dachau, about 16 km (9.9 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of Bavaria, which is located in southern Germany.Opened 22 March 1933 (51 days after Hitler took power), it was the.
  • The camp was liberated by American forces on 29 April 1945. Today, the site of Dachau Concentration Camp houses a memorial to those who suffered and perished under the Nazis. Visitors can tour the grounds and the remains of the camp and audio guides are available as are guided tours

Prisoners transporting stones on the stairs of death, SS photo, between 1942 and 1944 (photo credits: NIOD, Amsterdam) On 8 August 1938 the SS transferred the first prisoners from the Dachau concentration camp. During this phase, the prisoners, who were all Germans and Austrians and all men, had to build their own camp and set up. Explore the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, then take a tour of Munich's highlights. Enjoy a full-day tour from Frankfurt with a Duration: 13.5 hour

Dachau liberation reprisals - Wikipedi

  1. In 1965, on the initiative of concentration camp survivors, the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial was constructed on the site of the former Dachau concentration camp. Nearly 800.000 people visit the Memorial each year. Close to the old town of Dachau, it is located only about 12 miles (20 kilometers) northwest of Munich
  2. Dachau pełnił funkcję głównego obozu dla duchownych z Kościołów chrześcijańskich (katolickich, protestanckich i prawosławnych). Wedle szacunków Kościoła katolickiego, ok. 3 tys.(2794, w tym 1773 z Polski) zakonników, diakonów, księży i biskupów katolickich zostało zesłanych do Dachau. Przez dwa miesiące więźniem obozu był prawosławny patriarcha Serbii Gabriel V
  3. Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site: Koncetrační tábor Dachau - Na webu Tripadvisor naleznete 6 192 recenzí zákazníků, 7 920 fotografii a výhodné nabídky pro Dachau, Německo
  4. The Concentration Camp Memorial Site makes Dachau Europe's central place of learning and remembrance. More than 900,000 people from all over the world come here each year to learn from the lessons of contemporary history. Regular comitted events on contemporary history help to keep the memory of what happened alive

Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA: ) was the first World War II Nazi concentration camp.It was built in 1933 by Heinrich Himmler.The original purpose was to hold political prisoners.Dachau camp was located on the grounds of an old munitions factory.It was southeast of the medieval town of Dachau, about 16 km (10 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of. The Dachau Concentration Camp, 10 miles northwest of Munich, was one of the first death camps in Nazi Germany and might have served as a model for all resulting camps in the Third Reich. Dachau guests are taken through the authentic path of the prisoner, strolling the same way detainees were constrained to after their landing in the camp

The Dachau Massacre Of Concentration Camp Guards After

On this 5-hour Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Tour you'll discover the Nazi's first permanent concentration camp, and will learn about the prisoners they held and murdered there. Explore what has become one of the most important centers of remembrance, contemplation, and learning in Germany today with a memorial-accredited local guide Dachau, near Munich, was the first concentration camp set up by the Nazis in 1933 More than 200,000 people are thought to have been imprisoned ther Dachau was the first Nazi concentration camp and was opened on 22 March 1933, less than two months after Hitler seized power. The camp was built on the grounds of an old munitions factory from the First World War and was designed to hold 5000 prisoners Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA: [ˈdaxaʊ]) was the first of the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intended to hold political prisoners. It is located on the grounds of an abandoned munitions factory near the medieval town of Dachau, about 16 km (9.9 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of Bavaria, in southern Germany

The Dachau Tou

  • Dachau was Germany's first concentration camp, started in 1933 because the prisons were overflowing with people the government didn't like. They didn't have enough money to just build more prisons the way we do in our War on Drugs, so the Nazis built work camps like Dachau
  • Established in 1933, Dachau was one of the first Nazi concentration camps. Until it was liberated on April 29, 1945, over 206,000 prisoners from all over Europe, Jews and non-Jews, were held there. Some, particularly in the early years, were released, and transfers to and from Dachau were common
  • Barracks at Kaufering Subcamp of Dachau. Crematorium At Dachau. Dachau Crematorium. Inside the Crematorium At Dachau. Dachau Prisoner Badges. The Only Black Prisoner at Dachau. Prisoners Stand Outside of Dachau Revier. Russian Prisoner is Deloused. Two Ovens Inside the Crematorium

American Army troops entering area of Dachau Concentration

  1. DACHAU CONCENTRATION CAMP LOCATION - DACHAU concentration camp CAMP POPULATION The Dachau Concentration Camp Introduction: Located near the northeastern part of the town of Dachau 10 miles northwest of Munich Southern Germany There was a total of 188,000 from 1933-194
  2. Dachau concentration camp gate found two years after it was stolen. This article is more than 3 years old. Police in Bergen, Norway, find iron gate with slogan 'Arbeit macht frei' after tipoff
  3. Dachau was first Nazi concentration Camp. It was near Munich in southern Germany , established in 1933. It became the model and training center for all other SS-organized camps

Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site - Tripadviso

  • Dachau concentration camp. Report on its organisation, routine and recent history | Punishment and ill-treatment of prisoners. Mon 1 Jan 1934 04.21 EST
  • Konzentrationslager Dachau was established out of an abandoned munitions factory in 1933 to mitigate the overcrowding at other prisons throughout the country. Truth was that anyone who spoke up about the injustices that came with the Third Reich's rule were sent to jail - many of them were priests
  • Dachau being the first concentration camp to be opened started the epidemic of the rest of the concentration camps. I also did not know that as they Jewish people were in the concentration camps, they snuck and practiced their religion and culture
  • On March 22, 1933, an important event unfolded in the Bavarian city of Dachau near Munich in southern Germany: the first official concentration camp of the Nazis was opened. Since January 30, 1933, the day Hitler (Bio Hitler) took power, various camps were opened in order to incarcerate political enemies but Konzentrationslager Dachau was.
  • ation camp. At least 30,000 people died at Dachau, through starvation, disease, exposure, forced labor, and execution in numbers that were small relative to exter
  • The Dachau concentration camp was liberated on April 29, 1945. Every year we commemorate the liberation from Dachau. On the former concentration camp site, but also on the Leitenberg and the forest cemetery 'Waldfriedhof', the final resting place of many victims. To remember what happened, is the first step to prevent it from happening again
  • (LIB 6556) Interview of Prisoner, Dachau, Germany, May 5, 1945. MS, off-screen interview of Jewish prisoner, Dr. Mieczyslaw (Mietek) Dortheimer. Dr. Dortheimer was a lawyer in Poland prior to his internment in the Nazi prison camp. He relates in English his experiences in the camp and describes the tortures suffered by all

Dachau Concentration Camp was a very cruel death camp where many Jews were executed during World War II. The Jewish population before the Holocaust was 9,793,700. Though Jewish people were judged for many reasons such as their beliefs or way of life, the Jewish were doing fine and for the most part were happy Dachau was the first concentration camp to be built in Germany and soon more would follow the example of Dachau. It was built in 1933 and was supposed to be a forced labor camp for political prisoners but over the next 12 years, 200,000 people would be imprisoned here and 40,000 would be methodically murdered here Dachau Concentration Camp In March 1933 the Nazi government established its first official concentration camp (KZ-Lager) at Dachau, a town just northwest of Munich. The camp was established for political prisoners, and during its early operations, many prisoners served a specific time and were then released (in contrast to later concentration. KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau / Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, Dachau. 7.3K likes. Dies ist die offizielle Facebookseite der KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau. This is the official facebook page of the.. Dachau, located ten miles north of Munich, Germany, was the first concentration camp built by the Nazis and served as a model for all later camps.By 1937, it held 13,260 prisoners, including.

Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich (From US$33.19) Guided Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour with Train from Munich (From US$53.34) Private Tour: Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site by Train from Munich (From US$205.47) See all Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site experiences on Tripadviso We left the Dachau concentration camp before dawn on Monday, April 30, heading for Munich, and were hiking briskly when later that morning we came to a tall, picket fence. This turned out to be the perimeter of the Dachau satellite camp at Allach where the guards had fled. (Allach was seven miles from Dachau and was the largest of Dachau's 94. Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA: ) wis the first o the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intendit tae hauld poleetical prisoners. References This page wis last eeditit on 11 Mairch 2018, at 20:54.. Explore Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site on this half-day tour from Munich. Travel by train from Munich to Dachau with a guide, and visit the former concentration camp. During your guided tour, gain insight into the brutality of the Nazi regime and learn of the 42,000 innocent prisoners who lost their lives there Dachau concentration camp (German: Konzentrationslager (KZ) Dachau, IPA:) was the first of the Nazi concentration camps opened in Germany, intended to hold political prisoners.It is located on the grounds of an abandoned munitions factory northeast of the medieval town of Dachau, about 16 km (10 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of Bavaria, in southern Germany

Dachau The Holocaust Encyclopedi

  • Dachau Concentration Camp. Dachau was a horrific place. For 12 years, thousands of people were tortured, abused, stripped of their dignity and murdered. It was the original concentration camp established by the Nazis, just weeks after Adolf Hitler was appointed Reich Chancellor in 1933
  • German concentration camp. From the description of Dachau miscellaneous records, 1943-1945. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 754868894. Historical Note. German concentration camp. From the guide to the Dachau (Germany: Concentration Camp) miscellaneous records, 1943-1945, (Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace
  • Dachau Concentration Camp official tour. Although the memorial site opening hours are from 09:00 to 17:00, there are official tours only at 11:00 and 13:00. The tour takes about 2 and a half hours. Note that this is not a free tour but costs only 3 Euros.You will probably end up tipping the private guide more than this

The Dachau Concentration Camp was the first permanent camp built by the Nazi Party of Germany. It opened on March 22nd 1933, only 2 months after Adolf Hitler's rise to power and liberated on April 29th 1945. 2020 is the 75th Anniversay of the liberation. Dachau was the only Concentration Camp to have existed for the full 12 years of Hitler. The Dachau concentration camp was a Nazi concentration camp near the town of Dachau in Munich Germany It was built in 1933 and was opened until 1945.. .9 mi) northwest of Munich in the state of Bavaria, which is located in southern Germany.Opened 22 March 1933 (51 days after Hitler took power), [1] it. Venture out of Munich by local transport for a comprehensive tour through the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. An authorized guide will show you the many remaining historic buildings, and give you the story of what happened in this terrible place between 1933 and 1945. Today, the former Nazi concentration camp is a place of memory, pilgrim The concentration camp in Dachau was operative between 1933 and 1945. It is located on the grounds of an abandoned munitions factory near the town of Dachau, about 20km northwest of Munich. It was the first concentration camp established by the national socialists in Germany

The camp quickly became the model for all of the Nazi Germany concentration camps, where officers were trained to kill. Arrival to Dachau Munich Illustrated Press (1933) printed this propagandistic photograph on the front cover of the newspaper showing prisoners being sent to Dachau concentration camp . Because unregistered prisoners were killed as well, the exact.

KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau / Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site, Dachau. 7K likes. Dies ist die offizielle Facebookseite der KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau. This is the official facebook page of the Dachau.. . While the initial part of your visit can be emotional, overall it is an educational experience that shouldn't be missed while in Munich. Visiting Hours: Daily 9am-5pm. Admission Cost: Camp i

Dachau The 1st Concentration Camp http://www

  1. Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich by Train cancellation policy: If you cancel at least 3 days in advance of the scheduled departure, there is no cancellation fee. If you cancel within 2 days of the scheduled departure, there is a 100 percent cancellation fee
  2. Munich - Dachau concentration camp memorial, Alte Römerstraße, Dachau, Germany - panoramio.jpg 2,000 × 1,500 747 KB Nikolaus Jansen Dachau Arolsen Archives.jpg 544 × 432 30 KB Noor Plaque1.jpg 314 × 235 24 K
  3. Dachau Concentration Camp was a very cruel death camp where many Jews were executed during World War II. The Jewish population before the Holocaust was 9,793,700. Though Jewish people were judged for many reasons such as their beliefs or way of life, the Jewish were doing fine and for the most part were happy..
  4. This is the official app for The Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. In 1965 Dachau survivors organised an initiative and formed the Comité International de Dachau (CID) with the support of the German state of Bavaria government to establish The Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. Today the site is under the supervision of the Bavarian Memorial Foundation
  5. Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial. When the Nazis came to power in 1933, they didn’t waste any time getting vicious. They built Dachau that same year. It became the prototype for all Nazi death camps and they say about 43,000 people died here

Dachau Concentration Camp: History & Overvie

World War II hero Jim Feezel from Alabama, who drove a tank through the front gate of Dachau in Nazi Germany to liberate prisoners at the infamous concentration camp, has died. James Martin Feezel. Hotel v destinaci Dachau (Dachau Concentration Camp: 2,8 km) This family-run hotel is 250 metres from Dachau Castle and the Dachau New Gallery. It offers modern rooms with free Wi-Fi and a country-style restaurant serving Bavarian specialities


Nazi Concentration Camp Artists

Interested in Nazi Concentration Camp Artists? On this page, we have collected links for you, where you will receive the most necessary information about Nazi Concentration Camp Artists.

Art from the Holocaust: The stories behind the images .

    https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20160203-art-from-the-holocaust-the-stories-behind-the-images
    Bedrich Fritta was born in Bohemia in 1906 and was sent to Theresienstadt before being murdered in Auschwitz in 1944. He and his group of fellow ghetto artists bricked their works into walls .

Works of art / Historical collection / Museum / Auschwitz .

    http://auschwitz.org/en/museum/historical-collection/works-of-art/
    Lagermuseum. The Lagermuseum was an exceptional place, considering the conditions in the concentration camps. It was a special kind of “museum” that collected items plundered from people deported to the camp, including coins, antiques, Jewish prayer books, prayer garments, and phylacteries (tallisim and tefillin) (learn more) and local civilians, as well as art works made by prisoners on .

Art and the Holocaust — Google Arts & Culture

    https://artsandculture.google.com/theme/art-and-the-holocaust/3QISERnQYKxELA
    ARTISTS PERSECUTED BY THE NAZIS Most Jewish artists working in Germany in the 1930s experienced persecution. Many, including Kurt Schwitters, David Ludwig Bloch, Nandor Glid and Arno Nadel, were.

Holocaust Artist

    http://holocaust-artist.org/
    About the Artist. About the Artist. Fishel Rabinowicz was born in 1924 in Sosnowiec, Poland, and grew up as the third of ten children in a traditional Jewish family. His talent for painting was discovered at an early age and encouraged by his father. After the German Troops invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, thereby triggering the Second World War, the town of Sosnowiec near the German border was …

'Haunting' art by Jewish children in WW2 concentration camp

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-lancashire-26987720
    Helga Weissova, who was 14 when she was liberated, painted the girls' dorm ahead of an inspection by the Red Cross A collection of sketches by Jewish children who were held at a concentration camp.

Art as Survival: The Terezín Concentration Camp - Image .

    https://imagejournal.org/2019/06/17/art-as-survival-the-terezin-concentration-camp/
    Among the prisoners were gifted musicians, composers, visual artists, and writers. They were permitted to practice their arts — and later even encouraged to do so, when the Nazis realized that Terezín could become a propaganda show-place.

Theresienstadt Ghetto - Wikipedia

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theresienstadt_concentration_camp
    The inmates were free from the usual rules of Nazi censorship and the ban on "degenerate art". The origins began in the spontaneous "friendship evenings" organized by the first prisoners in December 1941 many promising artists had arrived in the Aufbaukommando transports, including the musicians Karel Švenk , Rafael Schächter , and Gideon Klein .

Concentration Camps, 1933–1939 The Holocaust Encyclopedia

    https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/concentration-camps-1933-39
    Concentration camps (Konzentrationslager abbreviated as KL or KZ) were an integral feature of the regime in Nazi Germany between 1933 and 1945.The term concentration camp refers to a camp in which people are detained or confined, usually under harsh conditions and without regard to legal norms of arrest and imprisonment that are acceptable in a constitutional democracy.

The Horrifying Discovery of Dachau Concentration Camp—And .

    https://www.history.com/news/dachau-concentration-camp-liberation
    Weeks earlier, Nazi commanders at Buchenwald, another notorious German concentration camp, packed at least 3,000 prisoners into 40 train cars in order …

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Watch the video: Liberating Dachau 1945 (January 2023).

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