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Auschwitz Concentration Camp. What Was Auschwitz Like? What Did The Prisoners Have To Endure? How Did The Concentration Camps Come About?

1041 words - 4 pages

Auschwitz Concentration CampThe word Holocaust means "Sacrifice by fire," and that is what many Jews, homosexuals, gypsies, and others considered inhuman by Germans did at the Auschwitz concentration camp during holocaust.On January 30, 1933, a man by the name of Adolph Hitler was appointed chancellor of Germany. Like many others, Hitler despised Jews because of false accusations that Jews were "the devil," and they killed Catholic children and drank their blood. On September 15, 1935, two laws were passed. The first law stated that only individuals of German blood could live in Germany, and the second law didn't allow marriage and sexual relationships to go on between Jews and the Germans. These laws were expected to drive Jews out of the German country, but when they didn't, a different action was taken, and that is when the horror of the holocaust began.The autumn day of November 9, 1938, Nazi mobs raided the Jewish ghettos and murdered more than 90 Jews, demolished 76 Jewish churches, and destroyed thousands of shops and businesses owned by Jews. They then arrested 30,000 Jews and sent them to concentration camps (Bankier, Microsoft Encyclopedia, 1993-2002).There were two types of camps, slave labor concentration camps and death camps. Prisoners placed in the slave labor camps worked in harsh environments and were starved to death. Gas chambers were used for gassing prisoners, and crematoriums were used for burning the dead bodies at the camps (librarythinkquest.org).Auschwitz concentration camp, located in Poland, was the main camp used for both slave labor and extermination of prisoners. Construction of Auschwitz began in October 1941, and was finished in March of 1942. The gas chambers and crematorium were constructed to kill and burn 20,000 people in one day. The camp was equipped with the commandant's office and living quarters, administration building, kitchen, hospital, the main guard station, and the barracks. One of the most famous signs was located at the entrance of this concentration camp, and it read, "Arbeit Macht Frei," which means, "Work will set you free." The sign gave prisoners a false hope that the harder they worked, the faster they would have freedom.When prisoners arrived at Aushwitz, they were separated into three groups. The first group were sent to gas chambers then burned in the crematorium. They were "marked for death" based on their looks; skinny, unhealthy, and unfit to work. Before prisoners were cremated, their hair was cut off and their gold fillings were removed from their teeth. The hair was then used to make hair nets and the gold fillings were melted down into bars.The second group of people was kept to work at large industrial factories. Oskar Schindler, a German Industrialist, helped a few prisoners survive by moving them from Auschwitz to his factory to work for him. It was there where they were treated equally and respected like a human being (www.mtsu.edu).The third group, mostly children, twins, and...

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