Interesting Auschwitz Facts
Interesting Auschwitz Facts

33 Tragic Auschwitz Facts

Karin Lehnardt
By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer
Published February 4, 2019Updated August 15, 2019
  • More people died at Auschwitz than the combined British and American losses during WWII.[3]
  • Slave labor at Auschwitz generated about 60 million Reichsmarks, or over $163 million in today's dollars.[3]
  • From 1943 until 1945, Nazi doctor Josef Mengele conducted medical experiments on the prisoners at Auschwitz. His favorite experiments were on young twins.[11]
  • Of the 3,000 twins who were shipped to Auschwitz, only 200 survived.[11]
  • Irma Grese Facts
    Grese was one of the most sadistic guards ever to work at a concentration camp
  • At Auschwitz, there were about 170 female SS. The most infamous was Irma Grese, who was nicknamed the "Hyena of Auschwitz." She was convicted of crimes against humanity and executed at the age of 22.[7]
  • Nicknamed the "Angel of Death," Mengele was a doctor at Auschwitz. His notoriously cruel experiments included injecting dye into the eyeballs of inmates to see if they would change colors and infecting inmates with horrible diseases to document their progress.[11]
  • Just 144 people escaped from Auschwitz successfully.[8]
  • The drug company Bayer bought prisoners from Auschwitz to use as research subjects to test new drugs.[5]
  • At Auschwitz, prisoners who were selected for labor were registered in a meticulous system of record keeping. Those taken to the gas chambers immediately on arrival were not recorded.[9]
  • The Nazi's took vast amounts of material goods from prisoners, including shoes, jewelry, gold teeth, toothbrushes, and even artificial limbs and human hair.[9]
  • On October 7, 1944, several hundred Auschwitz prisoners rebelled after they learned that they were going to be killed. Jewish women who worked in a nearby camp smuggled weapons to them. However, the Germans crushed the revolt and killed almost all the prisoners involved in the rebellion. The Jewish women were publicly hanged.[9]
  • Auschwitz was not the result of a single decision. Rather it was partly the result of "cumulative radicalization," in which one decision often led to a crisis, which led to a still more radical decision.[10]
  • Auschwitz will forever remain the black hole of the entire human history.

    - Isaac Herzog

  • When the Russians liberated Auschwitz in 1945, only 7,000 prisoners remained. Even though the Russians tried to help, nearly half of those died from starvation, disease, and exhaustion.[4]
  • The Nazis operated the camp between May 1940 and January 1945.[6]
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau, or Auschwitz II, is just one section of the Auschwitz complex. It is probably the most infamous because it is the part of Auschwitz that contained the gas chambers.[9]
  • There are almost 2 tons of human hair at Auschwitz.[6]
  • Approximately 1.1 million people died at Auschwitz; one million were Jewish men, women, and children.[3]
  • Auschwitz Horrors
    Over 1.1 million people died at Auschwitz

  • Auschwitz was located in German-occupied Poland and consisted of three camps, including a killing center. The camps opened in 1940 and closed in January 1945, when the Soviet army liberated it.[9]
  • Auschwitz had nearly 44 subcamps.[9]
  • At Auschwitz, a work day began at 4:30 am during the summer. In the winter, it began at 5:30 am.[2]
  • Over 232,000 children under the age of 18 years were deported to the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. This included 216,000 Jews, 11,000 Gypsies, at least 3,000 Poles, and over 1,000 Belarussians, Russians, Ukrainians, and others.[2]
  • The first escape from Auschwitz took place on July 6, 1940, by Tadeusz Wiejowski. Unfortunately, he was caught a year later and executed in jail.[2]
  • The slogan above the gates of Auschwitz claimed "Arbeit Macht Frei," which means "Work makes you free." Anyone passing underneath would know that it marked the end of their freedom.[9]
  • Auschwitz History
    Auschwitz has become a symbol of terror, evil, and the fathomless depth of human depravity

  • A Polish soldier, Witold Pilecki, volunteered to be imprisoned in Auschwitz in order to gather information. He gathered information, successfully escaped, and told the world.[2]
  • A total of 928 prisoners tried to escape from Auschwitz, including 878 men and 50 women. Of these, 196 successfully escaped, and most of them lived to see the end of the war.[2]
  • Antoni Dobrowolski, the oldest known survivor of Auschwitz, died aged 108 on October 21, 2012.[2]
  • Polish midwife Stanislawa Leszczynska helped to deliver over 3000 babies at Auschwitz.[2]
  • The first prisoner arrived at Auschwitz on June 14, 1940. The camp was liberated in January 1945.[10]
  • At Auschwitz, there is not one case in the records of an SS man being prosecuted for refusing to take part in the killings.[10]
  • Auschwitz Fact
    Auschwitz prisoners lived in cramped and unsanitary conditions
  • In Auschwitz-Birkenau, there were no sanitary facilities, lights, or heating in any of the prisoners' barracks.[2]
  • Else Baker, who was sent to Auschwitz as an eight-year-old child, noted that "the level of human depravity is unfathomable."[10]
  • "Puff" was a brothel for prisoners at Auschwitz. The Nazis created it to motivate non-Jewish prisoners to work harder in return for a sexual reward. Female prisoners in the brothel had to spend 15 minutes per man, with up to 20 men per day, all while being watched by a Nazi guard through a peephole.[10]
  • Over 2 million visitors tour Auschwitz every year. On peak days, over 30,000 people file through the camp's buildings.[1]
  • Tragic Auschwitz Facts INFOGRAPHIC
    Auschwitz Facts

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