Scrapbookpages Blog

October 14, 2013

Hair that was shaved from the heads of Jews at Auschwitz was made into human hairnets, according to Auschwitz tour guide

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 2:50 pm
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In one of the Museum buildings, in the former Auschwitz main camp, there is a display of human hair that was taken from the heads of the Jews whom had allegedly been gassed.

You can clearly see, in the photo below, that the hair, in Block 4 of the Auschwitz Museum, has been subjected to Zyklon-B poison gas.  One blond braid looks like it came from the head of a German girl, and it has not been subjected to Zyklon-B gas.

Human hair in display case at Auschwitz Photo Credit: Lukasz Trzcinski

Human hair in display case at Auschwitz
Photo Credit: Lukasz Trzcinski

When I first visited Auschwitz in 1998, I could not get close enough to take a photo of the human air in a glass case because there was a steady stream of tourists blocking my view. When I returned in 2005, there were signs saying that photographs were not allowed.  So I had to use the photo above, which I copied from another website.  It was taken by a Polish photographer who had plenty of time to get this photo after the hordes of tourists had left.

This quote is from a news article about British students on a one-day HET trip to Auschwitz:

A guide at Auschwitz for more than 20 years, Ms Zak told MM: “We expect various people’s reactions and we learn to deal with it. I have learned not to take it too personal and not to take it home. You can’t take it home.”

Nevertheless, she had a perspective of bleak honesty.

“Your great grandparents could have been wearing nets made of hair from camp victims,” she said.

The majority of people that were killed at Auschwitz were women and children, usually younger than 14. Why? Because women could not work like men, and though the children may have managed, how could she leave them behind? Look at the woman on this picture. How could she leave seven children behind?

“This could have been your grandparents.”

In my humble opinion, it is the height of audacity for a tour guide to tell gullible teens that the Nazis cut the hair from prisoners in order to sell the hair for making hair nets.

Would it have killed this tour guide to tell these 14-year-old children that the hair was cut from the heads of the incoming prisoners in an attempt to prevent typhus which is spread by lice, that hides in the hair?

The hair in the glass case at Auschwitz has obviously been disinfected with Zyklon-B AFTER it was cut from the heads of incoming prisoners.

According to an Auschwitz Museum guide book, entitled Auschwitz 1940 – 1945, which was first published in 1995, the Soviet Army found about 7,000 kilograms of human hair, packed in paper bags, when they liberated the camp. This was only a fraction of the hair cut from the heads of the Jews at Auschwitz; the rest of the hair had been sent to the Alex Zink company in Bavaria to be made into various products.

I don’t think that one of the products that was made from the human hair, taken from the Jews at Auschwitz, was hair nets.  After being disinfected with Zyklon-B, the hair would have been worthless for making human hair nets.

The following quote is from the book Auschwitz 1940 – 1945:

The analysis of the hair found in the camp, made by the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Crackow, is given below:

“Analysis of hair has shown the presence of hydrogen cyanide, a poisonous ingredient proper to compounds known as cyclons.”

Human hair does not normally deteriorate with age. Auschwitz survivors say that the hair in the large glass display case was cut from the heads of the victims after they were killed with Zyklon-B in the gas chambers.  According to Holocaust historians, this display is evidence that Jews were gassed at Auschwitz.

The picture below shows a glass display case in Block 4. There is a little bit of hair, including some that is braided, and two bolts of cloth that were made from hair combined with other material, according to my tour guide.

Cloth made from human hair at Auschwitz

Cloth made from human hair at Auschwitz

This quote is also from the news article about the HET trip for British students:

The infamous concentration camp sign which reads ‘arbeit macht frei’ (‘work sets you free’) is only a stone’s throw away, while symmetrical buildings flanked by systematic and compulsively arranged paths have a haunting purposefulness to them.

So it was not enough for the Nazis to murder 6 million Jews, they had to build “symmetrical buildings” and “compulsively arrange paths” to irritate the Jews 70 years after the war.

My photo below shows the symmetrical buildings along compulsively arranged paths. Oh, the Humanity!

Compulsivey arranged path through Auschwitz camp

Compulsively arranged path through Auschwitz with symmetrical buildings on each side

The guard tower in the background of my photo above is shown in the news article about the HET tour.  This indicates to me that the students were led down the path in the photo above, so this is probably the compulsively arranged path, flanked by the symmetrical buildings.

How cruel the Nazis were!  Would it have killed them to remodel the camp with winding paths and asymmetric buildings, so as not to offend the Jews?

The quote from the news article continues with this:

This is a place that was built to not only house misery, but to manufacture it on a scale never seen before.

No, the Auschwitz main camp was NOT built to house misery, but rather, it was built to house farm laborers. There were 22 buildings in the original Auschwitz farm labor camp, which was built in 1916; fourteen of the buildings were only one story high. The Nazis remodeled them into two story buildings with attic space.

Auschwitz was chosen as the site of the farm labor camp because it was the largest railroad hub in Europe. Laborers could be sent on trains to any place in Europe, to harvest the crops.  That is the same reason that Auschwitz was chosen by the Nazis for a TRANSIT  camp.  I previous wrote about Auschwitz being a railroad hub on this blog post.

How is it that an Auschwitz tour guide, with 20 years experience, didn’t know that?

Carla Cohn wrote “My Nine Lives” after surviving Theresienstadt, Auschwitz and Mauthausen

Filed under: Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 8:45 am

Carla Cohn was a small child, living in Berlin, with her prominent Jewish family, when she was sent, along with her sister and her parents to the Theresienstadt Ghetto, the best of all places, to which the Jews were sent, during the Holocaust.

Building L410 for young girls at Theresienstadt

Building L410 for young girls, ages 8 to 16, at Theresienstadt

I have blogged several times about Dr. Benjamin Murmelstein, who is the subject of a new film by Claude Lanzman, the man who made the 9 and 1/2 hour film entitled Shoah. Lanzman interviewed Dr. Mermelstein at great length at the time that he was recording testimony from many Holocaust survivors for Shoah, but the interview ended up on the cutting room floor. Lanzman’s new film features the interview with Dr. Benjamin Murmelstein.

Dr. Benjamin Murmelstein was at Theresienstadt from Sept. 27, 1944 until May 5, 1945, so Carla Cohn was not at Theresienstadt during the time that he was there.  In spite of this, Ms. Cohn calls him Murmelschwein in her book. (In German, the word Schwein means pig; this is the worst insult possible in German, sometimes the insult is given as Schweinehund.)

My previous blog posts, about Dr. Benjamin Murmelstein, which you can read here and here have generated a lot of comments, including this comment made by Herbert Stolpmann, who has his own blog at

This quote is from a comment made by Herbert Stolpmann:

… Carla Cohn has [this] to say of Dr. Wolf Murmelstein’s late father in her book ‘MY NINE LIVES’:

…The next Judenrat (Jewish Administration Advisor) was a Rabi, Benjamin Murmelstein, generally referred to as ‘Murmelschwein’ (pig). He was generally disliked and distrusted. Rumour had it, that being in charge of the deportation lists, he would substitute a name on the list for a price.

This ancient rumour has been confirmed to me rather poignantly when the past came to haunt me here in Rome a few years ago. I received a phone call by a man I did not know who insisted to come and see me regarding an important Terezin [Theresienstadt,sic] matter. He would not give his name over the phone. I was unable to refuse since it had to do with Terezin. I found myself face to face with an obviously very distressed man who introduced himself as Rabbi Murmelstein’s son!

His father has died recently but the Chief Rabbi of Rome, Toaff, would not permit a Jewish burial for his father. The son was contacting all surviving Terezin ghetto inmates to ask them to give positive testimony for his father, so that he could be buried as a Jew in honour…

I did a search on My Nine Lives and found that parts of the book can be read online. Ms. Cohn wrote her book in the German language, but I decided to read the English translation.  From my limited understanding of the German language, I was able to deduce that her writing style is very good, but I elected to read the English version, so that I would not misunderstand the meaning of her words.

These quotes are from pages 68 and 69 of her book:

From page 68:

The delousing drill was often repeated.  We never knew whether the shower was intended for the purpose of delousing and a “wash,” or whether it was to prepare our bodies for the gas chamber.  Zyklon B gas works more efficiently when the body is wet. […]

A real shower room, not a gas chamber, at Auschwitz-Birkenau

A real shower room, not a gas chamber, at Auschwitz-Birkenau

From page 69:

During the last “selection” by Dr. Mengele, the “Angel of Death,” I was found to be “unfit” and ordered “left” with the sick and aged.  I did not fully register what that meant at that moment.  I did notice that the scramble for the “shower” was even more frantic, though seemingly taking longer than in other times.  I was nude, in the corridor waiting my turn into the “shower.”

An SS man appeared, grabbed me and shoved me back out while whispering, “I have pulled you out once before, what are you doing in here again”!  I have never seen this SS before or afterwards.  My life was saved by “blind” luck in the guise of a case of mistaken identity!

Another push sent me outside, nude.  I found myself among a group of younger women, out in the icy cold. Someone threw some clothes at me, among them a long, black heavy man’s coat of which I grabbed and frantically  put on while hiding between women.

I read much more of her book, starting with her account of her stay at Theresienstadt, followed by her description of her days spent at Auschwitz-Birkenau.  She wrote about how she was eventually sent, in 1944, to the Mauthausen camp in Austria, where she was put to work, with a group of other women, digging a tunnel.  After World War II ended, there were accusations that Ernst Kaltenbrunner had given the order for all the prisoners at Mauthausen to be taken into the tunnel which was to be blown up in order to kill all the prisoners.

Carla Cohn apparently believed, after the war, that the purpose of the tunnel that she had been digging was to kill all the prisoners before the American liberators arrived.

Long story, short: Carla Cohn’s book is a composite of all the Holocaust claims, from the gassing of prisoners in the showers, to blowing up the prisoners in tunnels.  Her claims about Dr. Benjamin Murmelstein should be evaluated in that context.  In other words, I wouldn’t believe anything that she writes.