Dachau Concentration Camp

Trip Start Apr 12, 2012
Trip End Apr 30, 2012

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Flag of Germany  , Bavaria,
Thursday, April 26, 2012

World War II has always been of interest to me, especially the treatment of the Jews, both positive and negative. The Ann Frank house in Amsterdam was one of the most gut wrenching experiences of my life, and as gruesome as it sounds I've always wanted to visit a concentration camp. Since we were in Munich, Dachau seemed like the natural choice.

I guess the part I had the most difficult time with was marrying the beauty and serenity of the location with the atrocities that went on there. It was spring, everything was green, the birds were singing, and there were the death chambers. It was just really hard to wrap my head around it.

On March 22, 1933, a few weeks after Adolf Hitler had been appointed Reich Chancellor, a concentration camp for political prisoners was set up in Dachau. This camp served as a model for all later concentration camps and as a "school of violence" for the SS men under whose command it stood. In the twelve years of its existence over 200.000 persons from all over Europe were imprisoned here and in the numerous subsidiary camps. 41.500 were murdered. On April 29 1945,
American troops liberated the survivors.

The Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site was established in 1965 from the initiative of the surviving prisoners who had joined together in 1955 to form the Comité International de Dachau (CID) and fought for the establishment of a memorial site on the grounds of the former concentration camp.
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