Nazis can be seen having a good time in photos taken at Auschwitz, a concentration camp where 1.1 million people were killed.
The most deadly time at Auschwitz-Birkenau, from June 1944 to January 1945, when 400,000 Hungarian Jews were murdered, is depicted in photographs of Nazis sunbathing, eating blueberries, and setting up Christmas trees.
Obersturmführer Karl Höcker, Richard Baer’s military administrative assistant and the final commandant of the Auschwitz concentration camp, assembled the album, which was donated to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington in 2007.
Additional known SS camp officers, including Rudolf Höss, Josef Kramer, Franz Hössler, and Dr.
The images of some of those men, according to Josef Mengele, are the only ones that exist.
The largest camp was Auschwitz-Birkenau, also known as Auschwitz II, which the Germans established in the Polish village of Brzezinka in 1941.
In 1944, it housed over 90,000 prisoners, and the majority of the mass execution chambers were constructed there, which meant that the majority of Jews were killed there.
Karl Höcker, the person behind the album’s compilation, joined the SS in 1933, the Nazi party in 1937, and started working at Auschwitz in May 1944, where he oversaw the murder of 430,000 Hungarian Jews.
Photos he took at the killing center show Nazi officers, their families, and coworkers having fun, eating together, lounging in the sun, and playing concertinas.
The photos of the Yule tree lighting and the hunting trip were taken in January, just two weeks before the SS started clearing the camp. On January 27, 1945, Soviet troops freed the last remaining prisoners.
A large number of the images were shot at the SS vacation spot Solahütte, which is located about 30 km from Auschwitz and was designed for Nazi officers, guards, and administrative assistants to use on their days off from the concentration camp.
They (the Nazis) don’t look evil; they’re smiling, museum archivist Rebecca Erbelding said to the Washington Post after realizing the significance of the images.
With their dogs, they are having fun.
They have an appearance that could be your neighbor.
And, yes, that is true—humans do possess this ability.
After Dora-Mittelbau surrendered in April 1945, Höcker was apprehended by British forces but was freed in 1946 because it was unknown that he was an SS officer.
He was ultimately given a seven-year prison term for complicity in at least 1,000 murders, as well as a further four years for complicity in a triple murder that killed 20 people at a time in 1989.
January saw Höcker’s passing.
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