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Ravensbrück

Ravensbrück was a German concentration camp located about 60 miles north of Berlin. It was founded in 1938 by SS leader Heinrich Himmler and was unusual in that it was a camp primarily for women and children.

Inmates at Ravensbrück suffered greatly. Thousands were shot, strangled, gassed, buried alive, or worked to death. Some died in so-called medical experiments. All inmates were required to do heavy labor, including small children, who were commonly worked to death. By the time the Russian Army[?] liberated the camp in the spring of 1945, over 90,000 women and children had perished there. Upon liberation, 2,000 women were found to be still alive, but no children.

Following the war, little was written about Ravensbrück as it was considered to have been one of the lesser camps. However, renewed attention and interest in the camp came about following the Dusseldorf War Crimes Trials[?] begun in 1976. Among the most notorious placed on trial was a guard supervisor at Ravensbrück, Hermine Braunsteiner, who had been tracked down by the famous Nazi-hunter, Simon Wiesenthal. Numerous witnesses from Ravensbrück identified her as the pale, blue-eyed, six-foot tall blonde, called The Stomping Mare[?] because of her penchant for killing children by trampling them, often in front of their mothers. In 1981, the then 61-year-old woman was sentenced to life imprisonment for numerous child murders and other crimes of brutality.


(not to be confused with Ravensburger, a board game company)



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