Back to The Camps


- Dachau is the medieval town where the first concentration camp was opened in Germany during the Holocaust. It was also the first camp established by the Nazis for "political enemies". The Nazis made the camp a prototype for other camps to come. The building plans were created by Commandant Theodor Eicke. At the gate of the camp read the words "Arbiet Macht Frer" which means "Through Work Will One Be Free".

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the camp carries the words "Arbiet Macht Frer" which means "Through work will one be free".

- Every camp was for Jewish prisoners who were killed, who starved to death, or were gassed and cremated if rendered useless to the German camp.

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These are the Dachau Gas chambers where Jews would be poisoned then later cremated.
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After the gas chambers the bodies would be moved into large ovens where the germans would burn all evidence away.

- During 1933 to 1960 the camp was used as the 3rd center of the 3rd Reich. From 1945 to 1948, the camp was used as a prison for SS officers awaiting trial. After 1948 the German population expelled from the Czechoslovakia was housed there, and it was also the base for the United States. It was closed in 1960 and thereafter, at the instance of ex prisoners, various memorials began to be constructed there.

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- Bed rooms for jewish prisoners during the holocaust.


- Estimates of the demographic statistics vary but they are in the same general range. History may never know how many people were interned there or died there due to periods of disruption. One source gives general estimation of over 200,000 prisoners from more than 30 countries for the 3rd Reich's year's of whom two-thirds were political prisoners and nearly one-third were Jews. 25,613 prisoners are believed to have died in the camp and almost another 10,000 in its sub camps.


- More or less the camp was liberated by American forces on April 29 of 1945 at precisely 2:30 pm, and after liberation, was used as an internment camp by the U.S. Also, it was the site of the Dachau trials. Though out of justice there were incidents that had occurred not released from secrecy until 1991. One U.S. soldier personally executed 4 German soldiers. Another clubbed and shot those who were still moaning.

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One of the memorials actually located at the camp. The limbs of metal represent the Jew who tried to escape or fight back the camp guards. They show themselves being caught in barbed wire.



- As of today thousands come to see the camp as a tourist attraction. The camp itself is a memorial to those who had died there during the holocaust. People come from around the world to pay respect to the dead. You can sense the irony of the words on the camp gates, "Through Work Will One Be Free."