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Auschwitz-III

Article about: The huge industrial sector located at Auschwitz-III, also known as "Monowitz" after the largest of its affiliated camps, was established during the autumn of 1942. A year later, th

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    The huge industrial sector located at Auschwitz-III, also known as "Monowitz" after the largest of its affiliated camps, was established during the autumn of 1942. A year later, the SS decreed that Monowitz, like Birkenau, would become an independent concentration camp although another 12 months later on, Birkenau was reunified with Auschwitz-I whilst Auschwitz-III was renamed Monowitz. The Kommandant of Auschwitz-I was considered the senior officer for all three camps, with central control of all three camps also being located at the Stammlager (main camp, Auschwitz-I). Heinrich Schwarz held the position of Monowitz Kommandant from late 1943 until January 1945, having earlier served as adjutant to Kommandant Rudolf Hss at the main camp. A former book printer from Mnchen, Schwarz served at both Mauthausen and Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg before moving to Auschwitz during 1941. Later, overlooked in favour of Richard Baer for the position of Mittelbau-Dora Kommandant, he was transferred to the Natzweiler-Strutthof camp complex to oversee the evacuation of the prisoners to Dachau in spring 1945. Convicted by French authorities in Rastatt, he was executed by firing squad in March 1947.



    Prisoners assigned to Auschwitz-III, also referred to as "Buna", worked at the Buna synthetic rubber works located on the outskirts of Monowice near Oswiecim (Auschwitz). Rubber and fuels were manufactured by the IG Farben enterprise at Monowitz, initially using prisoners transferred from Auschwitz-I and later, once Monowitz was established, by slave labour from its own camps. Sub-camps whose prisoners were deployed within the arms and industrial sectors were also subordinate to Monowitz.

    The large industrial sector was surrounded by a number of camps, with Monowitz being the largest. The camp was liberated by Soviet forces in January 1945.

    IMAGES:

    1-3) Views of the IG Farben industrial sector "Buna". The area is vast with many period buildings visible today.

    4) SS tower structure - a number of these brick buildings, together with small SS air shelters line the main road that runs alongside the complex. Note the gatepost in the background. This road was also the main route taken by the Soviet forces when they arrived in January 1945.

    5) Interior of one of the former SS towers, currently home to several abandoned television sets.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture MONOWITZ (5).jpg   MONOWITZ (4).jpg  

    MONOWITZ (6).jpg   MONOWITZ (6).jpg  

    MONOWITZ (3).jpg  
    Experienced guide and published author leading detailed study trips to the former KZ sites of Nazi Germany. Contact for further details.

    www.concentrationcamptours.com

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    "maka akaŋl oyate maŋi pi ki le, tuweŋi wypeya oki hi sni"

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    By late 1944, over 10,000 prisoners were confined to Monowitz. throughout its existence, between 25,000 and 30,000 inmates perished, either through maltreatment, poor conditions or selection, transfer and murder at Birkenau. When the camp was evacuated by the SS as the Soviet forces approached, some 850 sick, weak prisoners were left behind to die. Most did, their salvation coming too late.

    IMAGES CONTINUED:

    6-7) Perimeter wall and barbed wire fencing. Sections similar to these can be found throughout the area.

    8) The memorial, which today stands opposite the site of the former IG Farben offices and housing zone.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture MONOWITZ.jpg   MONOWITZ (4).jpg  

    MONOWITZ (2).jpg  
    Last edited by CARL; 09-30-2016 at 11:32 PM.
    Experienced guide and published author leading detailed study trips to the former KZ sites of Nazi Germany. Contact for further details.

    www.concentrationcamptours.com

    www.concentrationcampmoney.com


    "maka akaŋl oyate maŋi pi ki le, tuweŋi wypeya oki hi sni"

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    Hi Carl great photos as usual...the fogginess always adds to the horror of the time. The last photo of the fence post memorial is very striking. In the first photo who is now occupying that building? Regards Larry
    It is not the size of a Collection in History that matters......Its the size of your Passion for it!! - Larry C

    One never knows what tree roots push to the surface of what laid buried before the tree was planted - Larry C

    The farther back you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see. - Winston Churchill

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    Hi Larry, thank you for your kind words. The early morning autumn mist certainly allowed for some striking images to be captured, that is true. Regarding the current business concerns at the complex, many of the facilities are still utilised in some way but I have not researched to find out who uses the facilities nowadays. I do know that some have attempted to gain access to the interior and have been rejected though. Near the main camp (Auschwitz-I), I was able to locate more former industrial facilities - these were abandoned but workers nearby has ensured that this too was a secure area.
    Experienced guide and published author leading detailed study trips to the former KZ sites of Nazi Germany. Contact for further details.

    www.concentrationcamptours.com

    www.concentrationcampmoney.com


    "maka akaŋl oyate maŋi pi ki le, tuweŋi wypeya oki hi sni"

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    Good photography.

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    Most interesting. It struck me when I visited the area how unfortunate it was that whilst Auschwitz 1 and and Auschwitz-Birkenau are preserved for visitors, the other subcamps are neglected and seemingly forgotten. This is especially striking with Monowitz which is an area of such importance. Therefore I was especially interested to read your text and see these images as clearly much remains.

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    Shalom Carl, another good thread to wake us up.

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    I can only second what harry said, another great thread Carl!..
    It's a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.



    I'm Spartacus, not really i'm Paul!...

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    Thank you gents, again, for your kind words.

    douglas2496 "Most interesting. It struck me when I visited the area how unfortunate it was that whilst Auschwitz 1 and and Auschwitz-Birkenau are preserved for visitors, the other subcamps are neglected and seemingly forgotten. This is especially striking with Monowitz which is an area of such importance. Therefore I was especially interested to read your text and see these images as clearly much remains."

    This is very true among the entire concentration camp system Douglas. When even some of the major camps have been neglected or not recognised in a sufficient manner, what chance does a satellite have...? Monowitz is something different though in that much of the industrial area is still utilised today - so fortunately, we are able to view it. However, the actual camp area, i.e. where the memorial is now located, has long since been cleared. For anybody considering a visit to the Auschwitz camps, time is certainly something that is required in large doses - the sheer scale is vast.

    Regards,

    Carl
    Experienced guide and published author leading detailed study trips to the former KZ sites of Nazi Germany. Contact for further details.

    www.concentrationcamptours.com

    www.concentrationcampmoney.com


    "maka akaŋl oyate maŋi pi ki le, tuweŋi wypeya oki hi sni"

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    Another interesting Thread!

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