Back to slave camps Intro
Alphabetical List of camps firmen_lager.xls
O - penal camp above the Dehnamühle - moved to SS Bunker - https:www.walpersberg.de/lager-0-2/
Oberfrohna - https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oberfrohna
Oberfrohna is a district of Limbach-Oberfrohna in the Saxon district of Zwickau .
In the 16th century the linen weaving trade developed. By the introduction of the stocking industry an industrial development began in the middle of the 18th century. In Oberfrohna however, cloth gloves and finest leather imitations were produced. Numerous factories were originally grown on former farms . The industrialization of the village allowed the population to rise to 3,400 inhabitants by 1890. By the incorporation of Rußdorf to Oberfrohna, the population rose to over 10,000 in 1935. In the same year, Oberfrohna was awarded the city charter. On July 1, 1950, the towns of Limbach and Oberfrohna were united. 
Excerpts from website about: US Third Army / 89 Infantry Division
Experiences with DPs and liberation of KZ Ohrdruf and camp at Gotha
Early April, 1945
Another problem of an entirely different nature, which gave the Division some concern at this time, was that of liberated foreigners, or displaced persons (DPs). The Division had freed thousands of these unfortunate men and women. Streams of Russians, Poles, French, Belgians, Italians and other nationalities heading for their homelands on foot and in every available conveyance thronged the roads and in many cases congested traffic. Although they were grateful to the Division troops and the Military Government detachments, their anti-German demonstrations occasionally threatened military security.
Less than a week later, the Division received marching orders again. For once nearly every Gasthaus commentator was right. Everybody knew that the outfit was headed for an occupation chore in the vicinity of Gotha and Arnstadt, which the Division had conquered in battle only a few weeks previously. On May 11 and 12, the combat-wise Rolling W wheeled back down the Autobahn 150 kilometers while at the same time being transferred from the First Army to the Ninth. This was the last Army assignment for the Division. On June 15th, the Division was transferred from to the control of the XVI Corps, under which jurisdiction it remained for the rest of the summer.
Occupation duties included guarding camps for displaced persons (DPs) at Ohrdruf and Gotha, and such places as hospitals, laboratories, railroad bridges, art treasures, etc. One of the most ticklish jobs fell to the GIs who were assigned roving patrol detail in German towns, particularly those near camps for DPs, to prevent the ex-slave laborers from running wild over their former masters. In addition, liberated inhabitants of the concentration camps, many of whom had vowed to devote the rest of their lives to vengeance, roamed the territory in confiscated German automobiles, seeking out their former captors. The hatred of the DPs for their ex-bosses at times ascended to heights of murderous fury.
Biggest spectacles of this period were the colorful caravans of displaced persons heading toward home by any possible conveyance: American and British trucks, confiscated German vehicles of all kinds, and horse-drawn wagons. Throngs of Russian, Belgian, Dutch, Polish, Slav and French men, women and children trudged purposefully down the Autobahn, shoving their tattered belongings in baby carriages, pushcarts, and whatever else could be found with wheels. On one occasion, a DP caravan including four camels was sighted near Gotha. All the DPs sported national flags, and the sunlit woods resounded with dancing and homeland songs in a dozen different languages, some sad, some boisterous. Particularly tuneful were the Russian DPs, heading for home atop First Army trucks, waving hammer-and-sickle banners and pumping accordions.
At Ohrdruf, the 255th Regiment and the 4th Armored Division pried a scab from one of Germany's ugliest sores when they captured the largest concentration camp liberated by an American force up to that time. It was located in a loathsome barracks area near a large army post. The occupants of the camp, mostly slave labor from Eastern Europe, had been callously starved and beaten to death, or shot down at the whim of their SS overseers. Men who had died in the camp had been buried in a huge common pit near the barracks area. When news came of the approach of the Americans, belated attempts were made to cover up the horrors of the place.
Prisoners were forced to exhume the decomposed bodies and cremate them on a makeshift grid of railroad rails set up near the pit. With American Armor only a few hours away, the SS guards had abandoned their project in a grisly state of half-completion, machine-gunned those prisoners too weak to walk in the courtyard of the concentration compound, and had fled. One guard attempted to disguise himself as a slave laborer but as he hurried through the gate along with a few prisoners who managed to escape during the confusion he was recognized by a former victim and killed on the spot with a heavy truck crank.
Included among the dead shot in the courtyard when the GIs entered was the body of an American flyer that had been brought to Ohrdruf from a Polish prison camp and had become ill en route. He was shot as he lay on a stretcher. Dusted over with lime, the bodies of about forty victims were stacked in a "beating shed" where they had died while receiving the customary punishment for minor infractions of the rules: 115 strokes on the naked back with either a cudgel or a heavy, sharp-bladed shovel. One of the ward bosses of the camp estimated the number of men buried in the common pit at 9,000. Shortly after the arrival of the armor and infantry, the Burgermeister of Ohrdruf and his wife were forced to visit the place. They disclaimed any definite knowledge of what had happened there but committed suicide that night.
The 89th Infantry Division in World War II was the first unit to actually come upon a Nazi concentration camp. The discovery of the Ohrdruf camp, by the 89th Infantry Division, is memorialized in the Holocaust Museum located in Washington, DC.
Ohrdruf was a work camp, not an extermination camp, but the difference is difficult to discern. Prisoners were literally worked to death and disposed of by burning in incinerators, which was the most "cost-effective method". As the Allies approached, panic set in for the guards. Those inmates who couldn't walk were shot. Others were forced to march towards a "safe haven", with most of them dying in the effort. It was a horrible and unbelievable scene which seared its way into one's memory.
Almost 50 years after World War II ended, veterans of the 89th and their families visited France and Germany as part of our final Tour of Remembrance. Towards the end of the trip, we visited Ohrdruf and, to our surprise (although we had been forewarned) found nothing, absolutely nothing. All traces of it had disappeared. There is only a graveyard for POWs and a German Army Training Camp. It was like it never existed. But it did and we can testify to it personally. Most Germans today were not even born then but we pray that the German people never let future generations forget what a mad regime can do.
The Ohrdruf section contains the following information:
1. A History of Ohrdruf: A history and perspective of Ohrdruf written by Society President Carl Peterson
2. An 89th Liberator: 89th Veteran Bruce Nickols writes about his experience liberating the camp.
3. A German/American Story: 89th Veteran Eric Leiserofef was born in Dresden. His unit entered the camp.
4. The Survivors: Personal Accounts by two survivors of Orhdruf.
5. Reimahg: Commemoration of the Liberation of Reimahg Slave Labor Camp
Submitted by: Alan Newark email@example.com---------------------
My wife's Uncle Buddy was one of the soldiers who helped liberate the concentration camps in Nazi Germany. Recently, a part of his testament about what he saw was posted on the internet. It is taken from the documentary Nightmare's End: Liberation of the Camps. It is a very powerful statement from a courageous man. Video:
Dr. John Z. Guzlowski
Eastern Illinois University
Harrowing photographs of the liberation of Nazi concentration camp inspire grandson of the soldier who took them to make Holocaust film.
Set of 16 photographs shows survivors at the Ohrdruf concentration camp.
Many are on the brink of starvation, others are being treated by doctors.
They were taken by Lieutenant Ron Johnson who served as a medic.
His grandson Matthew Nash saw them for the first time in 1995.
He has now produced a documentary to be shown at the G.I. film festival.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2303820/Grandfathers-hidden-photos-liberation-Nazi-concentration-camp-inspire-holocaust-film.html#ixzz2rd69sm5e
World War II-era US 89th Infantry Division veterans go back to the Ohrdruf Concentration Camp:
Operation 14f13 'Sonderbehandlung 14f13'
- Bad Lauterberg - Krs. Osterode i H, Britiz Zone M 52/C 94
CivilianWorker Camp - Schickert & Co. 400 workers, and
CivilianWorker Camp - Metalwerk Odertal, 500 workers (from Arbeitsamt Northheim)
- Freiheit - Krs. Osterode a. Harz, British zone, L 52/C 75
CC Kdo of Buchenwald - inmates working for the firm Kurt Heber (from Buergemaster).
Olt-Waldlager - Forced labour camp (from death certificates)
CivilianWorker Camp - Inmates working for the firm Oigee and also for the firm Kurt Heber (from Buergemaster).
- Herzberg - Krs Osterode i Harz Britizeh zone M52/C 84
CivilianWorker Camp - Dag Herzberg Lager Wiese, 300 works (from Arbeisamt: northeim)
- Osterhagen camp - Osterode i. Harz, British zone, M 52/C 83
CC Kdo of Buchenwald - see Baubrigade 3
CC Kdo of Buchenwald - working for Kurt Heber, Mashinenfabrik, established on 28.9.44, average strength 300 prisoners, tranfered to Dora on 28.10.44 (from Buchenwald invoices).
CC Kdo of Dora - starting 28.10.44 (Transfer census), referred to labor as "Camp Dachs Osterode".
(from War Crimes investigation).
Nuexei - Krs Osterode i H. -Belongs to the Village of Osterhage M 52/C 83 (from Wohnplaetze d. DR.)
- Oldenrode, Krs. Osterode/Harz, British zone, L 52/C 66
Civilian Worker Camp: Gastwirtschaft, 60 persons, from Buergemeister (mayor)
- Osterode - Krs Osterode/Hartz, British zone L 52.C75
CC Kdo of Mittelbau, working for the firm Curt Heber, Maschinenfabrik, last mention on 27.3.45 (from change of strength reports)
CC Kdo Dacs IVof Mittelbau, working for the Petershuette with an average strength of 300 prisoners. First mentioned 15.11. 44 with 100 persons until 27.3.45 from Mittelbau change of strength reports.
Prison - Gerichtsgefaengnis - 1000 former inmates.
Civilian Worker Camp worked for following companies:
Anton Piller, 45 persons
Nordwerke, 50 pers.
R Kellermann, 430 pers.
Groe Uhl, 180 pers.
Curt Heber, 650 pers,
Waldlager Bremkestal, 290 pers.
FA Lorenz, Turnhalle, 310 pers. (from Buegermeiser)
Optische Werke, 200 worker (from Arbeitsamt Northeim)
CC Kdo of Sachsenhausen: Baubrigade 3 is mentined form 27.2.45 to 16.3.45 Mittelbau daily strength reports. Civilian Worker Camp - worked for:
- Tettenborn - Krs. Osterode/Harz British zone M 52/C 91
Otto Mohrich, Gastwirtschaft, 60 persons,
Gastwirtschaft Nussbaum, 70 persons. (from Buergemeister).
Oranienburg - collective point; Mar 1933 - July 1934; est. prisoners 3,000; est. deaths min 16; See: http://gedenkstaette-sachsenhausen.de/
Osthofen KZ - collective point; Marc 33 to July 1934;
Papenburg - Kr. Aschendorf/Buemmling, British zone; very large. See Emsland
When the first penal camps were found in 1923, model farms were introduced, the labour being supplied by the prisoners. In the Emsland area, the small moors had to be drained before cultivation, this one undertaken by the Wasserbauleitstung, which employed prisoners from Camp VII. Cultivations was under the direction of the Moor Administration Emsland which controlled the Moor administration of Boergermoor, Aschendorfer Moor, Rhederfeld and Neusustrum.
Until 1940 the penal canps were classed as Zuchthaus and the inmates ere mainly German "Sicherungsverwahrte" usually habitual criminals. Lingen prison acted as a receiving centre and the prisoners were distributed from there to the various camps.
After 1940 military offenders were sent to the camps and from 1941 onward, foreigners were arriving: Poles, Czechs, Dutch and Belgians.
At the beginning of the war, camps VI, Viii, IX, X, XI, XII, XIII, XIV, AND XV were handed over to the Army as POW camps.
Pirna - Russian zone;
CC Kdo. of Flosenbuerg, Arbeistlager Kirchham, Kirchham b Pocking, Fliegerhorst (in Flossenbuerg address book). First mentioned in Jan 1945 from mayor, it had an average of 400 prissoners, last mentioned in April 1945. Work detail of prison Stadelheimin Muenchen (Munich): 300 convicts worked here Jan 43 to 1945 (from mayor).
Plötzensee - A state prison in Berlin constructed between 1869 and 1879.
From 1933 to 1945, more than 3,000 people were executed at the Plötzensee prison. Those executed at Plötzensee included communist resistance groups, members of the Kreisau circle and participants of the July 20, 1944 plot to assassinate Hitler. Numerous foreign prisoners from occupied European countries were also killed at Plötzensee. The execution shed and its surrounding became a memorial site in 1952.
Porschdorf - CC Kdo of Flossenbuerg; billeted in Rathmannsdorf, post and railway station; arbeitslager (worker's camp);
10) Porschdorf over Bad Schandau; Schwalbe III; 250 prisoners in 1945