The first concentration camp in Prussia, situated in the district capital of Oranienburg, just north of Berlin, took on a key role in the persecution of both real and potential opponents during the establishment of the National Socialist regime. After the state officially recognised the concentration camp, a smaller one in the district of Potsdam was closed by the local government and the prisoners held there were sent to Oranienburg. The detainees included delegates from both local and central government, leading radio broadcasters and many intellectuals. In the beginning the prisoners were almost only Communists, but from June and July 1933 onwards, they began to include a number of Social Democrats.
Some of the prisoners had belonged to political parties of the centre such as
the Deutschen Zentrumspartei or the right wing Deutschnationalen Volkspartei.
Some had even been members of the Stahlhelm, the National Socialist
Betriebszellenorganisationen or the NSDAP. These prisoners had a special status
and received privileged prison conditions. At its high point the numbers of
prisoners reached 735 and in total 3000 men and three women were imprisoned in