Szebnie


In June 1941 and in connection with the German attack on the Soviet union, a prisoner of war camp was established for about 6,000 Soviet prisoners of war in Szebnie, about fourty kilometres southwest of Rzeszow. The first prisoners of war were forced to build about twenty barracks, but these were far from adequate and during the winter of 1941/42 the majority of prisoners of war died due to cold, starvation and disease. In the spring of 1943, the camp was reorganized into a concentration camp for Jews sent to the camp from settled ghettos within the region, including. Rzeszow. These were Jews who had not been murdered in connection with the dismantling of the ghettos because the germans believed that they were needed as slave workers.

Although the majority of the prisoners sent to the camp were Jews, there were also prisoners of other births in the camp. The camp eventually consisted of about 35 barracks covering an area of about 10 hectares. The prisoners were used as slave workers in various industries or other projects. In August 1943, more than 1,000 prisoners were in the camp, with already at the end of the year about 5,000 prisoners were in the camp. In august 1943, the Jews were separated from the other prisoners by dividing the camp into a jewish part and another part.

In November 1943, 2,000 Jews were shot in a forest outside Dubrocowa a few kilometers south of Szebnie. In 1943, 2,800 Jews were deported to Auschwitz. In February 1944, only 80 Jews remained in the camp, deported to Plaszow outside Krakow. Other (non-Jewish) prisoners remained until August 1944 when they were deported to a camp called Grybow. Between February and August 1944, the camp once again served as a prisoner-of-war camp for Soviet prisoners of war.

In August 1944, the prisoners of war were murdered by SS units summoned from the SS-Heidelager, a military training camp for the SS in Pustkow, about six miles north of Szebnie. In connection with this, the barracks were burned down and in early September the Soviet Red army arrived in Szebnie. The camp was destroyed. A total of about 10,000 prisoners died in the camp during its existence between June 1941 and August 1944. In addition to the murder of prisoners, typhus epidemics also claimed a large number of victims.

Current status: Demolished with monument (2015).

Address: Szebnie 222, 38-203 Szebnie.

Get there: Car.

My comment:

To my knowledge, there is nothing left of the camp and on the site there is now a school and a football field. But there has been a memorial and on the wall of the school there is a large information board (polish) that shows how the camp looked like. At the cemetery in Szebnie there is another memorial and west of Szebnie there is a cemetery for Soviet prisoners of war, among other things. died in the camp and partly a cemetery for people in the region who were killed by the Nazis, including from the camp.

Follow up in books: Kogon, Eugen: The Theory and Practice of Hell: The German Concentration Camps and the System Behind Them (2006).