WW 2 Nazi Concentration Camps: 10 Sad Facts

It is a point in history that brings tears and anger. How could such a thing happen?

But when a person considers what a concentration camp is, we could say to ourselves, “it is happening right now in the United States of America.”

I speak of the rounding up of presumably illegal aliens, many of whom are children and are all gathered in concentration camps in various places near the border of Mexico.

Is it right? That is for you to decide. I have my opinions, but I choose not to share them in this venue.

What Is A Concentration Camp?

A concentration camp is essentially a make-shift prison that hold people without the benefit of a trial or due cause.

They are normally political prisoners or members of minority groups who are being held for security, to exploit or as a form of punishment.

The majority of concentration camps are a direct executive decree or a military order.

In Nazi Germany, there were Concentration Camps, but there were also other Camps that included:

  • Extermination camps
  • Labor camps
  • Prisons
  • Transit camps
  • Collection points
  • and Ghettos

In today’s post, I am using the term Concentration camp, but in these facts, it could include any of the other types of camps.

Here are 10 sad facts about WW 2 Nazi Concentration Camps.

#1: The People Who Were In These Camps

While nearly everyone knows the Nazis put Jewish people in these camps, there were many others too…

  • Political prisoners
  • Union organizers
  • Romani citizens
  • Serbs
  • Poles
  • People with disabilities
  • and Criminals

So consider the fact that good people were put in with evil people and this made conditions even more difficult.

#2: Highest Death Rates

Death was common among the Nazi Concentration Camps. Torture, malnourished, and the top 1… Extermination killed many.

The camps with the highest death rates were:

  1. Auschwitz – Birkenau in Poland with well over 1,000,000
  2. Treblinka in Poland with 780,000
  3. Belzec in Poland with over 400,000
  4. Sobibor in Poland with 170,165
  5. and Chelmno in Poland with over 150,000

All of those were Extermination camps but regular Concentration Camps had high rates of death too.

#3: Hitler Deemed It The Final Solution

Hitler’s idea was to eliminate all Jews as well as:

  • Artists
  • Handicapped
  • Educators
  • Homosexuals
  • Gypsies
  • and Communists

in what he called The Final Solution.

#4: The First Camp

The first Concentration Camp was opened in March of 1933. Located in Southern Germany, it was called Dachau and started by holding political prisoners. But it also became a camp of Jews and more and over 30,000 died there.

#5: The Schutzstaffel

In 1934, the Schutzstaffel under Heinrich Himmler took complete control of all the Nazi Concentration Camps.

They were known as the evil SS.

The camps were administered by the Concentration Camps Inspectorate (CCI) which in 1942 was merged into SS-Wirtschafts-Verwaltungshauptamt and they were guarded by SS-Totenkopfverbände.

#6: Life Expectancy

In 1943, over all the German Concentration Camps, the life expectancy was 6 weeks.

#7: 3,500,000

That is a huge number…

I think about it and it is more than the amount of people that live here on the island of Puerto Rico.

Between 1933 and 1945, there were that many, or more German citizens who spent time in Concentration Camps. Approximately 77,000 German citizens were executed for one or another form of resistance by Special Courts, courts-martial, and the civil justice system.

Notice that I said German citizens. That doesn’t take into account the many citizens of other countries.

#8: The Badges

Everyone who was in the Concentration Camps had to wear colored triangle badges to denote what they were:

  • Red – Communists and political prisoners
  • Yellow – Jews
  • Green – Common criminals
  • Brown – Romanis
  • Pink – Homosexuals
  • Black – Asocials (murderers, thieves, gypsies, prostitutes, etc…)
  • Purple – Jehovah’s Witnesses

#9: Experiments

The Nazis also used many prisoners for various medical experiments.

  • Freezing
  • Lethal medicines
  • Cold water immersion
  • and many others

#10: When Bergen – Belsen Was Liberated

Various allies liberated camp upon camp, but one of the most disgusting finds was when the British 11th Armored Division liberated Bergen – Belsen. They found 60,000 prisoners alive. But they also found 13,000 corpses just laying wherever.

The Brits made the SS guards gather the bodies and bury them.

Out of the 60,000 found alive, another approximately 10,000 died after being freed from typhus or the malnutrition they endured.

Final Thoughts

After researching all of this, I just want to scream.

I knew it was bad, but….


I really have nothing further to say. Do you have any comments?

Please leave them below and I pray nothing like this ever happens again.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Army Combat Jump: 7 Amazing Facts
  2. Top 10 Biggest Military Battles in History
  3. Rescuing The Artifacts Plundered In World War II: 9 Cool Facts About The Monument’s Men
  4. Battle Of The Bulge: 20 Cool Facts
  5. General Patton: Facts, History and Cool Quotes
chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)
Publisher, Part-Time-Commander.com
Email: mrchuckholmes@gmail.com

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3 thoughts on “WW 2 Nazi Concentration Camps: 10 Sad Facts”

    1. Johndel Callora

      There were a lot of people who in the concentration camps who did not give in to evil, instead they held on to their faith until the end. Hopefully these events will never happen again.

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