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The Holocaust History Project.
The Holocaust History Project.

Auschwitz - The Death Camp

Auschwitz, or Auschwitz-Birkenau, is the best-known of all the Nazi death camps, and has come to symbolize the Holocaust itself.

Though Auschwitz was just one of six extermination camps, it was also a labor concentration camp, extracting prisoners' "value" from them, in the form of hard labor, for weeks or months. As the prisoners weakened from disease, or the starvation rations, or overwork, they were selected to be taken to the gas chambers for a more "humane" death. In this, Auschwitz differed from most of the other camps, like Belzec or Treblinka.

The Holocaust History Project presents fourteen works regarding the Auschwitz camp:

Auschwitz: Technique and Operation of the Gas Chambers, by Jean-Claude Pressac.

Jean-Claude Pressac's famous book on the gas chambers at Auschwitz is presented, courtesy of the Beate Klarsfeld Foundation. This massive 564-page study is based on internal Nazi documents, letters, memorandums, architectural drawings and a wealth of other primary sources. It is required reading for anyone seriously interested in the role Auschwitz played during the Holocaust.

Body Disposal at Auschwitz: The End of Holocaust-Denial, by John Zimmerman.

Methodically tackling the claims at the "forefront" of Holocaust-denial, Prof. Zimmerman examines corpse-cremation at Auschwitz. In debunking those who claim the camp was incapable of burning its over 1,000,000 victims, he presents new evidence and calls upon little-known but important documents.

The Controversy Around the Death Toll at Auschwitz, by Albrecht Kolthoff

A series of articles responding to a claim by German journalist Fritjof Meyer in the journal Osteuropa that the death toll in Auschwitz was far less than usually reported. THHP member Albrecht Kolthoff sets the record straight. (These articles are in German - translations will follow.)

My Response to Carlo Mattogno, by John Zimmerman.

Detailed response to Carlo Mattogno's criticism of the above essay that refutes Mattogno's claims and exposes his errors and deceptions.

The Chemistry of Auschwitz, by Richard J. Green.

Holocaust-deniers claim that the physical evidence remaining at the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz-Birkenau camps proves that nobody was ever gassed to death there. Dr. Green examines the evidence and explains why the opposite is true.

Leuchter, Rudolf and the Iron Blues, by Richard J. Green.

Specific refutation of the claims of Holocaust-deniers Fred Leuchter and Germar Rudolf, and their so-called "Leuchter Report" and "Rudolf Report." This essay explores a key sub-issue (Prussian blue formation) in great detail.

Chemistry is Not the Science, by Richard J. Green and Jamie McCarthy.

A detailed response to Germar Rudolf's critique of the above essays. The errors and deceptions used by Rudolf are examined and corrected, from the outgassing of the Zyklon to (again) the alleged formation of Prussian blue.

The Report of Richard J. Green, PhD.,

Prepared for the court in response to a lengthy affidavit submitted by David Irving as "new evidence" in his attempt to appeal the verdict against him in his libel suit against Deborah Lipstadt.

How Reliable are the Hoess Memoirs?, by John Zimmerman.

This detailed examination of the memoirs of the most famous Commandant of Auschwitz looks at his writings, and compares them to the known facts about the camp - some of which have only become available over the course of the intervening fifty years. With extensive references to source documents, this essay is not only a valuable tour of Hoess' memoirs. It is also an instructive example of how properly to analyze written historical documents, and see whether they mesh with other evidence.

John Ball: Air Photo Expert?, by Jamie McCarthy.

John Clive Ball is the Holocaust-denier who claims to have proven that mass murder could not have occurred at Auschwitz, by analyzing aerial photographs of the camp. But how qualified is Ball to render an opinion?

A Study of the Cyanide Compounds Content In The Walls Of The Gas Chambers in the Former Auschwitz and Birkenau Concentration Camps, by Jan Markiewicz, Wojciech Gubala, Jerzy Labedz with a foreword by Richard J. Green

Shows unequivocally that there are detectable levels of cyanide in the facilities in Auschwitz in which mass murder was conducted with Zyklon B. Importantly, such levels of cyanide are not found in barracks that housed prisoners.

The "Wolzek" Paradox, by Jamie McCarthy.

Auschwitz Commandant Rudolf Hoess mentioned a death camp which does not exist. Does this mean his entire confession is false? The paradox is examined and resolved.

Zyklon Introduction Columns, by Jamie McCarthy and Mark Van Alstine.

Four hollow wire columns were used to pour the Zyklon-B poison into the main Auschwitz gas chambers. How do we know what they looked like? The documents and testimony are presented.

The Ruins of the Gas Chambers: A Forensic Investigation of Crematoriums at Auschwitz I and Auschwitz-Birkenau by Daniel Keren, Harry W. Mazal and Jamie McCarthy.

"No holes, no Holocaust" has long been one of the denier community's favorite slogans. It refers to the holes in the roof of Kremas (crematoria) II and III at the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp. Now a report entitled The Ruins of the Gas Chambers: A Forensic Investigation of Crematoriums at Auschwitz I and Auschwitz-Birkenau by Daniel Keren, Harry W. Mazal and Jamie McCarthy proves not only that the holes existed but shows where they are. This report first appeared in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Oxford University Press, Volume 18, Number 1, Spring 2004, pages 68-103. and is reproduced with permission.

For the sake of completeness, we also mention the essay Response to Germar Rudolf, by Rich Green, though it has been superceded by the more thorough Chemistry is Not the Science.

We also present ten documents from the Auschwitz camp:


August 21, 1942: "Bathing Installations for Special Action"

Describes the installation of two large ovens in the "bathing installations for special action" (the Bunker 1 and Bunker 2 gas chambers).

"Special action" and "special treatment" were Nazi code words for executions, in this case mass gassing of human beings.


August 26, 1942: "Material for Special Treatment"

Gives permission to send a truck to Dessau, in order to pick up "material for special treatment." Dessau was where the poison Zyklon-B was manufactured.


September 1-5, 1942: Diary of Johann Paul Kremer

Dr. Kremer witnessed gassings in Auschwitz and wrote about them in his diary.
September 8, 1942: 80,000 cremation capacity per month not sufficient for Auschwitz

Topf engineer Karl Prüfer was told by First Lieutenant Krone of the Works and Buildings Section of the Economics and Administration Department in Berlin that a daily cremation capacity of 2650 was insufficient and that Topf therefore had to deliver more ovens "as quickly as possible".


January 29, 1943: "Cremation with Simultaneous Special Treatment"

Indicates that it was important to the Auschwitz camp staff to be able to conduct "special treatment" at the same time the corpses from a previous gassing were being cremated.

Includes answers for David Irving regarding his fallacious analysis of this document.


January 29, 1943: "Vergasungskeller"

An explicit reference to the gas chamber of Krematorium II of Auschwitz-Birkenau as a "Vergasungskeller," literally translated: "gassing cellar."

KrII Inventory

March 31, 1943: Krema II Inventory

The inventory of Krematorium II upon its completion reveals "four wire-mesh introduction devices" and "four wooden covers." These were the apparatus through which the Zyklon-B was poured into the gas chamber.

KrIII Inventory

June 24, 1943: Krema III Inventory

The inventory of Krematorium III upon its completion reveals "fourteen showerheads" and "one gas-tight door." The room labeled as a morgue requires showerheads and a gas-tight door because it is not a morgue: it is a gassing chamber.

Weisse May 1944

May 24, 1944: "Unconditional Secrecy"

An SS man named Weisse is sworn to "unconditional secrecy during the measures to carry out the Jewish evacuation."

Weisse 1944

June/July 1944: "Revealing a State Secret"

Gottfried Weisse states that he has been formally notified of the conviction and execution of a woman for revealing state secrets.

Last modified: April 26, 2009
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