The Children's Block in Birkenau in Yad Vashem Studies, Volume XXIV

Shimon Adler

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Block 31: The Children’s Block in the Family Camp at Birkenau

In September–December 1943, several transports brought 17,500 Jews from Theresienstadt to Birkenau. The Nazis established a special “privileged” family camp in Birkenau to serve as a “show camp,” and within its framework the children’s block was created. In July 1944, this block, as well as the whole “family camp,” was annihilated. However, during the ten months of the block’s existence, a semblance of “normal life” was preserved, mainly due to the endeavors of Freddy Hirsch, the prisoners’ leader. In some cases, informal relations were even established between child inmates and men of the SS guard. This submission is based on and includes quotations from testimonies of both Nazi staff members and Jewish survivors. The role played by Josef Mengele in the life of the block, which was adjacent to and became part of the health complex, is noted.

מפרט המוצר
ISSN 0084-3296
Year 1994
Catalog No. 199411
No. of Pages 35 pp.
Format Electronic article in Yad Vashem Studies, Volume XXIV, pp. 281-315, Edited by Aharon Weiss
Publisher Yad Vashem