All photographs copyright © Alan Jacobs.

The Death Gate (1)

Your view is inside the rail entrance to Birkenau, known as the Death Gate. Scrolling this time to the left, you are confronted with the unloading ramp. Here trains from all over Nazi occupied Europe traveled with their human contents to be, in large part, murdered in the gas chambers of this, the biggest killing center in the Nazi system. Birkenau was known not only as a concentration and labor camp, but a death camp as well - "Vernichtungslager". It was opened some time in early 1942. The ramp was used to unload trains only after May 1944. May and June '44 were the largest production totals for this death factory, murdering approximately 10,000 people a day; mostly Jews from Hungary, mainly from the Budapest Ghetto. And on one day, a "record" 20,000 people were sent to the gas chambers.

A view from outside the gate may be seen at [link].