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The idea for this project originated long before the foundation of the Association. It was an interest of Cameron Munro from the 1970's; why was there no information or photographs from the Auschwitz sub camps? After all, many more prisoners worked, lived and died in the sub camps than in Auschwitz I. In 2006 we discussed the idea for this project with the Auschwitz State Museum who were very supportive of the aims of the project.

Auschwitz undertook the first detailed investigation of the Auschwitz sub camps in the 1960's. This ground breaking work of Dr Piper, Dr Strzelecki and their associates from the Auschwitz State Museum in finding the locations of the sub camps, photographing them and writing the first detailed histories in Hefte Von Auschwitz in the 1960's and 1970's acted as a huge inspiration for our project. We salute this groundbreaking work in combining physical inspection with detailed archival research. These are the techniques we use. The Auschwitz photographs from the 1960's were key in identifying many of the sites, which have obviously, in many cases, changed substantially.

As with much work undertaken in Poland post war and in the 1960's and 1970's on Nazi crimes little or nothing exists in English. Hefte Von Auschwitz, the journal from Auschwitz is published in Polish and German. Thus one of the main aims of the project was to produce the first detailed history of the Auschwitz sub camps in English.

The Project

The aims of the Project are as follows:

a) To find/ refind the physical locations of all the sub camps and workplaces of those sub camps;

b) To photograph in detail the physical locations of the sub camps and work places;

c) To compare the photographs taken in the 1960's with the current situation;

d) To prepare detailed maps of the sub camps and work place locations;

e) To research the interaction between the Schmelt camp operation and the Auschwitz sub camps;

f) To visit local museums and archives in search of original photographs, documents and witnesses;

g) To undertake detailed research in the Auschwitz archives. This consisted mainly of reviewing the thousands of survivor testimonies for those related to the sub camps;

h) To produce the first detailed list of SS who worked in each of the sub camps;

i) To locate any memorials to the sub camp and identify those sub camps with no memorial;

j) To ascertain current usage of the sub camp and work camp space;

k) To ascertain the usage of the sub camp and work camp space after the war for example as POW camps for Germans, UB camps for polish politicals;

l) To trace and identify the routes of evacuation West from the sub camps in 1945.

We have completed the field and archive research parts of the project. The field work took us 2 years from 2006 to 2008. We spent a full six months in the field and took 20,000 photographs. We recently completed a full year in the Auschwitz archives reviewing documents, and testimonies. We are currently writing the chapters and bringing togethor the approximately 900 photographs, 100 maps and 200 documents that will be used in the book. This will all be reviewed by the Auschwitz State Museum. Hence a publication date of March 2010.

The Book

We are aiming to publish the results of our work in a book of approximately 1,000 pages in March 2010. The book will take the following format:

a) Introductory chapter on the structure of the sub camp system to be written by Dr Piper formerly of Auschwitz State Museum;

b) Chapter on each of the approximately 45 sub camps and their work locations. This will incorporate:

- written history including post war history

- modern photographs

- original photographs of sub camps, photographs from Auschwitz research

in the 1960's, original photographs of work locations including postcards

- detailed maps of the sub camps and work space

- selection of original documents;

c) Chapter on Schmelt camps and the interaction with Auschwitz sub camps;

d) List of SS personnel in each sub camp to be written by Dr Lasik.

See also: