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German History in Documents and Images
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View of a Section of the Buchenwald Concentration Camp after its Liberation by American Troops (May 1945)
Opened in 1937, Buchenwald was one of the largest concentration and labor camps on German soil. The now infamous motto "To Each his Own" (i.e., "Everyone Gets What He Deserves") adorned one of its entrance gates. By 1945, the camp had interned as many as 250,000 prisoners, at least 50,000 of whom died. Inmates were exploited as forced laborers and were made to work in quarries, for example, or in armaments production during the war. Medical experiments were also carried out on prisoners. In the last year of the war, Buchenwald was one of the endpoints for prisoners on death marches from the East. Photo by Bob Bogen.