Few of those deported to the death camps knew what
awaited them. Ordered to assemble for relocation to
labor camps, they were brought to railway sidings.
The Germans treated them as "freight," crowded
them into cattle cars without food, water, or sanitary
facilities and "shipped" them to their destination.
Some did not survive these horrific journeys, which
could last for several days.
The death camps were located near railway lines to
facilitate the transport of Jews from all over Europe.
They were also built close to the major Polish ghettos
where large numbers of Jews were concentrated. Treblinka,
for example, was a short distance from Warsaw and
was the killing center for the majority of Warsaws
Jews. Auschwitz was located in southern Poland. More
than a million Jews from Central and Western Europe
were deported there to be murdered.
Arrival of Hungarian Jews at Auschwitz death camp,
Oswiecim, Poland, 1944.