In March 1940, german doctors arrived at the mental hospital in Warta, about 40 kilometers east of Kalisz. Immediately they began to compile lists of patients with mentally diseases not consistent with the Nazi racial idea of good health. At the end of March, they began to prepare an action against those on the lists. The action was that these people would be murdered because their diagnosis posed a threat to the racially pure society Nazis sought. Between, April 2 - 4, 1940, 499 patients were murdered in a truck whose cargo compartment had been hermetically sealed (airtight). When the compartment was filled, the doors were closed and the truck’s engine was started. The engine exhausts were via a hose led into the cargo compartment and the patients inside died of carbon monoxide poisoning. Before being brought into the cargo area, patients had been given a soothing syringe so that they would not resist. The murders were carried out by a special command called Sonderkommando Lange under command of Herbert Lange. The commando’s main task was to kill mentally ill patients in various mental hospitals around the district of Wartheland. The bodies were buried in a mass grave in a forest just outside Rossoszyca, about ten kilometres east of Warta.

Current status: Preserved with monument (2023).

Location: 51°41' 56.48" N 18°43' 40.84" E

Get there: Car.

My comment:

The hospital (Sieradzka 3, 98-290 Warta) is still in use and there is a monument dedicated to the victims. As always when I visited similar monuments at mental hospitals, it gives a feeling of discomfort to visit such places. In the forest at Rossoszyca, where the bodies were buried, there is a memorial surrounded by a fence. It is located about 500 meters from the road. The names of the murdered are written on tablets on either side of the monument.

Follow up in books: Friedlander, Henry: The Origins of Nazi Genocide – From euthanasia to the final solution (1995).