Located thirty-seven miles west of Krakow, Auschwitz was the camp where Jewish
people were killed and worked. This camp , out of all the rest tortured the
most people. At the camp there was a place called the
"Black Wall," this was where the people were executed . In March of 1941, there
was another camp that started to be built. This second camp was called
Auschwitz II, or Birkinau. It was located 1.9 miles away
from Auschwitz I. People that were chosen to come to these camps were expelled
from their homes. Their houses were destroyed for the purpose of building
Birkinau. Birkinau had nine sub-units. They were separated from each other by
electrically charged fences that lines their borders. In August 1942, the
womens’ section at Auscwitz I was moved to Birkinau. Nine hundred and
ninety-nine women from Ravensbruck camp and other women from different camps
joined them also. Birkinau now had over 6,000 women prisoners being held. In
the town Monowitz, another camp was being built. This camp was called Auschwitz
III, or Buna-Monowitz. Other camps that were located close to Monowitz were
moved to Buna-Monowitz. The population of Birknau was the most densly populated
out of all the camps. It also had the most cruel and bad conditions of all the
camps in the complex. The prisoners at Birkinau mostly consisted of Jews, Poles
, and Germans. There were a number of Gypsy and Czech Jew family camps located
at Birkinau for a period of time also. In Birkinau, the gas chambers and the
oven, where the bodies were burned operated at Auschwitz I. Birkinau and all
the other sub-camps were mostly forced labor camps. The most recognized of the
labor camps are, Budy, Czechowitz, Glenwitz, Rajsko, and Furstenarube. The
prisoners here were worked to the point of death. Trains transported people to
the camps, and violently forced them off the train. All of the people’s property
was left on the train also. They prisoners were sent into two different lines,
one for women and the other for men. The lines moved into the place were a
procedure called ‘Selection’ took place. The ones who could work were not
killed at this time, but the women, children, and others that couldn’t work were
gassed. The prisoners that were to work, had their clothes taken, heads shaved,
got sterilized, and were given black and white striped clothes to wear. In the
forced labor camps, the average life time was only a few months. Some of the
prisoners that couldn’t react or move became what was known as Muselmann. A
dreaded part of camps was the Appeal, or roll call. In this, prisoners were
sent out into the cold night after a hard day of work, and lined up. Anyone that
fell to the ground was shot or gassed. One more of all the bad work chores was
the Sonderkommando. Dong this meant that you burned the bodies of the dead
prisoners in the creamatoria. Tattoos were given to the prisoners on their
right arm as an easier way of registration. Not all of the earlier prisoners had
this tattoo, but the regiterd number of prisoners was 405,000. The daily
routine in the complex differed in each camp, but the basic routine was the
same. They: woke at dawn, cleaned their areas, morning roll call was taken,
they walked to the work site, worked for long hours, had to wait in lines for
food, then walked bback to their bunks, block inspection was done, and then
evening roll call was taken. There were also people who got picked for medical
experiments. The best known docter at Auschwitz was Josef Mengele. His
experiments were mostly done on twins and dwarfs. He did lots of things that
had to do with seeing how ling it would take a person to die if you do this or
that. He also did experiments that had to do with cutting off body parts, and
reattaaching them to different parts of the body. By January 20th, 1944, the
population of the Aushwitz complex had reached 80,839. That number rose up and
up as the monthes past an!d more prisoners came. The first gas chamber to be
used was bult in Auschwitz I. The gas that was used in the chambers was called
Zyklon B. In Birkinau, the largest number of people that could be killed in the
gas chambers was 6,000 people daily. The gas chambers lookes just like shower
rooms. The prisoners were told they needed to be cleaned before work, and were
then killed