Auschwitz is a concentration camp located in Southern Poland established by SS authorities. It was the largest of the Nazi concentration and death camps and could hold up to 15,000- 20,000 prisoners. Construction on Auschwitz began in April 1940, which is was about eight months after WW11 began, and was created in an abandoned Polish army barrack. Auschwitz was staffed by 7,000 German SS.
Auschwitz was initially for Polish citizens including anti- Nazi activists, politicians, and resistance members, but it evolved into a network of camps for Jewish people, artists, educators, Gypsies, communists, homosexuals, and the mentally and physically handicapped who all were mostly killed off. There were three Auschwitz camps Auschwitz 1, Auschwitz 2, and Auschwitz 3. Auschwitz 2 was located in Birkenau and was mainly used for the extermination of Jews.
Auschwitz 3 was located in Monowitz and was attained the status of headquarters of the industrial sub-camps. Auschwitz was located close to the center of all German-occupied countries of the European continent and was in close proximity to the string of rail lines used to transport hostages to the network of Nazi camps. Deaths in Auschwitz:Those who were put into Auschwitz either had to do slave labor or they were put to death. Over one million prisoners died there. The prisoners died either by starvation, infectious disease, gas chambers, or by being put crematoriums. Some people died from medical experiments done by a man named Josef Mengele. More people died in Auschwitz then in the American and British losses of World War two combined.
Gas Chambers:Undesirable prisoners, such as the weak, sick, or others who couldn’t work, were all told when they got off of the train and were told that they were going to undergo disinfection and bathe before they went into the camp. These prisoners all went into a large room with fake shower heads which was the basement in Block 11 also known as the “death block”. A large, heavy door was closed behind them and that’s when a man above the gas chamber dropped Zyklon B pellets into the room. When the gas was released and it hit the oxygen, the Zyklon B turned deadly.
Within 20 minutes, everyone inside of the gas chamber had suffocated. Crematoriums:In Auschwitz there were over 46 ovens that could dispose of some 4,400 prisoners a day. There were five crematoriums in Auschwitz. Crematoriums were often used to burn prisoners that had earlier been killed in the gas chambers and were sometimes used to burn prisoners alive.
In the first crematorium about 340 corpses were burned in 24 hours.The end of Auschwitz:Auschwitz was discovered in 1944. The allies didn’t bomb Auschwitz because they were afraid of the death toll of the German propaganda that might exploit any bombing of the camps prisoners.
U.S authorities claimed that their aircrafts did not have the capacity to conduct air raidsAuschwitz was eventually abandoned in 1945 when they heard that the Soviet Union was coming. A vast majority of prisoners were marched into Germany by the Nazis. A few thousand prisoners were left behind who were thought to ill to travel. SS guards were supposed to shoot them all but in the confusion of the abandonment, the SS left them alive.
The prisoners were found on January 27, 1945. Auschwitz was open for five years(1940-1945). An estimated 1.3 million people were deported by police and the SS to Auschwitz and out of those 1.3 million, 1.1 million people died.