Encyclopedia > Sachsenhausen

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Sachsenhausen was a concentration camp in Nazi Germany. It was named after the quarter of Sachsenhausen, which belongs to the town of Oranienburg.

The camp was established in 1936. It was located at the edge of Berlin, hence having a special position among the German concentration camps: the administrative centre of all concentration camps was in Oranienburg, and Sachsenhausen became a training centre for SS troops.

About 200,000 prisoners were in Sachsenhausen between 1936 and 1945. Almost 100,000 people died from hunger, exhaustion, diseases and coldness, were tormented to death by the SS, died in violent medical experiments or were executed. (Although there was a gas chamber in Sachsenhausen, the mass murders with gas took place in other concentration camps further east.)

Prior to the liberation of the camp the SS forced the prisoners to come with them to other camps further west. Most of the totally exhausted prisoners did not survive this last march; collapsing prisoners were killed by the SS. On April 22, 1945, 3000 prisoners who had stayed in the camp due to unability to go, were liberated by the Red Army.

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