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Tracks to the Ovens at Birkenau


This small-gauge track was one of fifteen leading to five furnaces consisting of three retorts each. At first small metal trolleys containing the bodies of gassed victims were pushed by prisoners to the mouth of each opening. The bodies of these innocent people were then thrust into the flames. Other, more efficient means of loading the ovens were soon employed, each team of workers developing its own method. In the upper portion of this photo is the ceiling, collapsed after the SS, in the face of the advancing Soviet armies, had dismantled and removed the furnaces and dynamited the structure in an effort to hide their crimes.



Alan Jacobs