"I remember their faces, especially their eyes which betrayed their ordeal,” he told the Times. Twelve thousand pots and pans. It was a paradox of history that soldiers formally representing Stalinist totalitarianism brought freedom to the prisoners of Nazi totalitarianism. The death marches, which occurred in extremely cold conditions, killed up to 15,000 prisoners. The prisoners were found by Soviet forces when they liberated Auschwitz on January 27, 1945. When Soviet soldiers poured into Auschwitz in January 1945, they encountered warehouses filled with massive quantities of other people’s belongings. Liberating Auschwitz was not in their orders, but when a group of scouts stumbled into Birkenau on January 27, 1945, they knew they had found something terrible. The Soviet army liberated Auschwitz 75 years ago, on Jan. 27, 1945. That human kindness characterized the liberation. After five years of hell, Auschwitz was liberated at last. They made bonfires of documents on the camp streets. She was one of a group of hundreds of children who had been left behind, and she had endured medical experiments during her imprisonment. Rows of barracks in Auschwitz-Birkenau after the liberation. Emaciated patients who became ill when they ate the food they offered. People living in barracks that were encrusted with excrement. HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate. Culture Auschwitz's harrowing history. A small group of healthier prisoners attended to the sick. Forty-four thousand pairs of shoes. With the help of the Polish government, a group of former prisoners turned the site into a memorial and museum. The German army had already fled, leaving behind the … They planned what prisoners thought of as death marches—lengthy, forced journeys from Auschwitz toward other concentration and death camps. Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone/Getty Images. Sherman -- who had survived several concentration camps with no serious physical injuries -- moved to the United States in 1949. As they saw the soldiers, the emaciated prisoners hugged, kissed and cried. For months, Polish Red Cross workers labored to save the dying and treat the living, working without adequate food or supplies and helping prisoners get in touch with their loved ones. The Auschwitz camp system was liberated by the Soviet army on January 27, 1945. If you agree to save the information contained in the cookies, please continue to use the service. Now 96, Dabrowska is among a handful of Auschwitz survivors still alive. As the Red Army marched closer and closer, the SS decided it was time to evacuate. On January 27, 1945, the Soviet army liberated the prisoners in Auschwitz. The majority of them are buried at the municipal cemetery in Oświęcim. Over 230 Soviet soldiers, including the commander of the 472nd regiment, Col. Siemen Lvovich Besprozvanny, died in combat while liberating the Main Camp, Birkenau, Monowitz, and the city of Oświęcim. In the Main Camp and Birkenau, Soviet soldiers discovered the corpses of about 600 prisoners who had been shot by the withdrawing SS or who had succumbed to exhaustion. German military authorities established the Bergen-Belsen camp in 1940. The shocked soldiers helped set up hospitals on site, and townspeople volunteered to help. Auschwitz had been the site of 1.1 million murders, and in 1947 it became the site of its mastermind’s hanging. By late 1944, they were still unsure if the Allies would make it to Oświęcim. Vasily Gromadsky, a Russian officer with the 60th Army liberating Auschwitz recalls what happened. Twice a week we compile our most fascinating features and deliver them straight to you. Nazis ' biggest concentration camp on January 27, 1945, Auschwitz Untold, online or in the of! 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