In total, more than 200,000 people were confined in Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp. During the camp’s initial phase, the majority of prisoners were political opponents of the National Socialist regime, but from 1938 onwards the camp was increasingly used as a tool of the Nazi’s racist social and population policies. These were directed against Jews, Sinti and Roma, homosexuals, so-called ‘anti-social’ and ‘work-shy’ elements, professional criminals and other groups. Beginning in 1939, tens of thousands of people from occupied countries, foreign slave labourers and Allied prisoners of war were taken to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp. In 1944, around 90 per cent of the inmates were foreigners, with citizens of the Soviet Union and Poland making up the largest national groups. The victimisation of ever more categories required further accommodation, so as early as 1938, the ‘Prisoner’s Camp’ was extended – in a deviation from the ‘ideal layout’ – by constructing the ‘Small Camp’. This included barracks 37, 38 and 39, which were used almost exclusively for Jewish prisoners until most of them were deported to Auschwitz in October 1942.
Sachsenhausen concentration camp 1936 -
The ideal concentration camp
A concentration camp for the capital city of the "Reich"
Evacuation, death marches, liberation