I am blogging today about the infamous “Black Wall” at Auschwitz in answer to comments made on a blog post that I did about Block 10 on Oct. 13th.
The Black Wall is at the far end of a long, narrow courtyard between Block 10 and Block 11 at the Auschwitz main camp. There is a brick wall which connects the two buildings and in front of this brick wall, there is a removable wall, constructed out of logs and covered with cork painted black. The ends of the wall are angled slightly toward the center. The purpose of the cork wall was to protect the beautiful brick wall behind it from bullet holes.
Many people have noticed that there are no bullet holes in the wall. That’s because this is not the original black wall. According to my tour guide in 1998, this is a reconstruction which looks like the original. The original wall was removed after Arthur Liebehenschel replaced Rudolf Hoess as the camp commander in November, 1943, and ordered the executions at the wall to stop.
The total number of people executed at Auschwitz-Birkenau, according to the Nazi records, was 1,646 including 117 Jews, 1,485 Poles, 19 Russians, 5 Czechs and 20 Gypsies. However, the Auschwitz Museum claims that there were 20,000 people “murdered” at the Black Wall. (more…)