Sachsenhausen Memorial and Museum (since 1993)
As a result of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the reunification of Germany, Sachsenhausen Memorial and Museum has, since January 1993, been part of the Brandenburg Memorials Foundation. This is a public trust, funded equally by the Federal Republic of Germany and the state of Brandenburg. The Museum of the Death March, located in Below Forest, near Wittstock, is also administered by the Memorial. In these woods, 18,000 prisoners, who had been taken on forced marches by the SS in the direction of Schwerin, stayed for a number of days in late April and early May of 1945.
Preservation and Redesign
The original buildings and remaining structures of the concentration camp are "guarantors of memory." As soon as the Foundation had been established, extensive rehabilitation and remodelling work began. The inherited state of the memorial is characterised by the thorough transformation of its historical topography into the memorial complex installed in the time of the GDR. The shift of emphasis towards the camp relics from the Nazi period brings with it a re-evaluation of the various historical layers. The implementation of key rehabilitation projects is funded by a federal government special investment programme.
Decentralised Museum Concept
The redesign of Sachsenhausen Memorial is based on a decentralised
concept, which aims to communicate history to visitors in very places where
it happened. Thirteen exhibitions on different sites examine the particular
history of each and link it to a thematic presentation that sets it in a
wider context. These are complemented by temporary exhibitions, held in the
New Museum. There are also exhibitions by school groups, resulting from
educational projects, as well as workshop exhibitions to present new
acquisitions from the archives and depot. After completion of the
remodelling work, Sachsenhausen Memorial and Museum remains a place of
mourning and remembrance in a European context, while facing up to the tasks
of a modern museum of history.