Following in the footsteps of war, my Auschwitz I & II visit…..
These two camps have to be on everyone’s visit list..you can’t help but become fully entangled with emotions here.
Auschwitz I, this camp could be described as a deserted village if you did’t know the history. The entrance of the camp is of course world famous and pictures like this one number into the thousands, but just standing here I found myself wondering what it must have been like for those who arrived here.
Through the gates and you have several rows of double story buildings as shown above, one such building was the sorting house. This building was the first stop for everyone arriving, if you had any kind of physical or mental illness then your fate was swift, see the picture below:
Yes this was the wall used to shoot anyone who had physical or mental illness, standing in this small court yard between two of these buildings you instantly knew what was coming.
To the left of this shot is a building with its windows boarded up, no not due to vandals but because this was the building were the Nazi’s kept one of the most notorious physician ” Josef Mengele” or “Dr Death”. In this building he would perform experiments that would cause pain and in most cases death on prisoners, he liked to work on twins mostly!!! You can feel something its’n right about this building just by looking at it, see picture below:
Of course all around the camp you see century boxes, barbed wire and one of the other killing methods, the hanging station, see pictures below:
Then there is the gas chamber, I have to say actually standing in the chamber brought chill’s to my whole body, totally unimaginable what those must have felt and what they went through.. see pictures below:
Auschwitz II, this camp is a lot bigger than Auschwitz I but no less surreal. I didn’t hear a single bird sing during my visit.
As you enter this camp the scale becomes very clear as does the attempt by the Germans to destroy the camp prior to them retreating.
The picture above shows the right side of the camp as you enter. As I follow the train tracks up to the left side entrance I couldn’t help but remember all the pictures I have seen showing the 1000’s of prisoners being sorted and channelled into different areas.
Each building housed far too many people, the conditions must have been horrific, see pictures below:
I feel these camps truly bring home the holocaust and provides a direct insight in to the process that each and every person had to endure. It is certainly a place I will never forget visiting and the emotions I felt whilst there.
To see all my pictures please see photo gallery page.
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