As the most notorious death camp set up by the Nazis, the name Auschwitz is synonymous with fear, horror, and genocide. The camp was established in 1940 in the suburbs of Oswiecim, in German-occupied Poland, and later named Auschwitz by the Germans.
Originally intended to be a concentration camp for Poles, by 1942 Auschwitz had a second function as the largest Nazi death camp and the main center for the mass extermination of Europe’s Jews.
An estimated 1.1 million people perished in Auschwitz—one million of them Jews.
The following texts are eyewitness accounts of Centropa interviewees who – against all odds – survived Auschwitz-Birkenau.