The One Nazi Concentration Camp That Did Not Separate Families


A Poem Inscribed in Concrete: Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust

She sat upon the garden wall fragile as the rose

Whose last petal hung from its vine deeply red

And beautiful, it’s withered beauty clinging till

The chill night breeze blew it down to feed on

The earth once more

And there she fed the squirrels that came to her

As if to safety and to warmth, here gentle

Laughter ringing, she held the girl to small,

Grey, gently grasping hands and wanted not to talk of days gone

By of losses and of pain, but

Rather to gather memories of love round her like a blanket

She leaned and fed and talked to him though she

Believed not because he could not answer why

And she laughed and she laughed and she

Laughed…… And through it all She loved


Family Camp B II in Birkenau was the only camp that kept families together.   In September 1943 the first transport of 10,000 Jews arrived from Theresienstad.  Families were kept together to show prisoners arriving by train that they were not being sent to the crematorium.  The inmates were forced to send postcards to the ghetto stating they were alive and together.  Their last postcards were written prior to their extermination, yet the cards were dated and mailed after their death.  The final transport of 10,000 Jews arrived in March 1944.  In early July 1944 Dr. Joseph Mengele selected 89 of the Birkenau Boys between the ages of 14 and 16.  The reasons for selecting these 89 is unknown.  The remaining inmates were gassed on July 10 and 11 1944.


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