Scrapbookpages Blog

July 10, 2014

Samuel Willenberg, 91, the last living survivor of the Treblinka extermination camp

Samuel Willenberg poses with Andrew Denton on a trip to Treblinka

Samuel Willenberg poses with Andrew Denton on a trip to Treblinka

Samuel Willenberg, the man on the left in the photo above, is the last surviving Sonderkommando Jew who worked in the Treblinka death camp.  Sitting next to him is Andrew Denton, who made a trip recently to the Treblinka Memoiral Site, to see where some of his relatives were murdered. You can read about his trip to the Memorial Site here.

Sculpture at Treblinka resembles the railroad tracks into the camp

My 1998 photo of the sculpture at Treblinka, which resembles the railroad tracks into the camp

Treblinka was one of the three Operation Reinhard [Reinhardt] camps, where Jews were transported to be killed during the Holocaust; the other two camps were Sobibor and Belzec.

According to the news article, cited above, “Of the estimated six million Jews killed in Europe during World War II, more than 800,000 perished at Treblinka – in just 16 months. It is one of the most murderous places on earth.”

Historian Jerzy Halbersztadt explained to Denton “that there is little record of those who perished here at Treblinka because the killing was on such an industrial scale it was impossible to keep track of them.”

According to the news article, Denton asked Jerzy how he could be sure that his relatives (the Ditkofskys) were among the victims.

Jerzy Halbersztadt then described “a meticulous collection of German transport records showing train movements, dates and times, the number of people transported, all cross-checked against eyewitness accounts and court records. He then shows [Denton] a table with the numbers and dates of the people deported to Treblinka from the Bialystok region, where Suchowola [the city where Denton’s relatives lived] is located. The dates and numbers square with the accounts from those Poles left behind,” according to the article.

Wait a minute! Bialystok?  I previously wrote about Bialystok on this blog post:

The Nazis claimed that they were transporting the Jews to the East, but the Jews from Bialystok were transported WEST to Treblinaka; I blogged about this at

Original sigh that hung at the fake train station at Treblinka  Photo Credit: Yad Vashem

Original sigh that hung at the fake train station Photo Credit: Yad Vashem

Sculpture represents the train platform at Treblinka

My 1998 photo of the sculpture which represents the train platform at Treblinka

This quote is from the same article, which you can read in full here:

Once off the train, [Willenberg] continues, [the Jews] would have been first whipped and beaten, then driven through a gate into sheds and made to undress. The women’s heads would be shaved. They would then be commanded to run, naked, into the gas chambers, to be asphyxiated by carbon monoxide from a diesel engine.

In August 1943, the Sonderkommando of Treblinka staged a revolt, unheard of in the German camps, and 300 prisoners escaped. Three hundred out of the more than 800,000 sent to Treblinka. And of that 300, [Denton] was told, only one remained alive: 91-year-old Samuel Willenberg. “He lives in Israel,” said Jerzy, “and he will be here to talk to you this afternoon.”

Map of the Treblinka Camp

Map of the Treblinka Camp

The map above shows the layout of the Treblinka camp as seen by visitors today who enter the area of the former camp along the route of the train tracks, shown at the bottom of the map. The gas chambers are shown in red; the large red rectangle is where 10 new gas chambers were constructed near the one original gas chamber. The pyres where the bodies were burned are indicated by the lines just above the red rectangle that denotes the gas chamber. Today, a large monument is located in the spot where the original gas chamber once stood.

The sculpture, which represents the tracks, leads visitors to the spot where the Jews go off the train.  The fake train station where the clothing was stored is shown in blue near the bottom of the map;  the undressing rooms for the Jews are also shown in blue.

Shown in gray, on the left side, near the bottom of the map, is where the SS staff members and the Ukrainian guards lived.

Around 1,000 Jewish Sonderkommando Jews lived in the barracks that are shown in black.

On the right side of the map, the burial sites, for the Jews who died on the train, are shown in brown.   The area where the barracks once stood is now covered with trees; the area at the top of the map on the right is where the symbolic cemetery is now located.

Stone Monument stands in the spot where the first gas chamber at Treblinka was located

My 1998 photo of the stone Monument which stands in the spot where the gas chambers at Treblinka were located

The photograph above shows the 26-foot granite memorial stone, which was designed to resemble a tombstone. It is located approximately on the spot where the gas chambers once stood, according to my tour guide in 1998. This view was taken from the front side of the memorial stone, and you can see some of the stones of the symbolic cemetery behind it. The large crack down the middle of the stone is part of the design.

I know that some of my readers will say that carbon monoxide from diesel engines will not kill people.  But before you bring that up, just remember Pat Buchanan, whose career was ruined when he disputed the claim that 800,000 Jews were killed, using carbon monoxide:

Read more about Aktion Reinhardt at


  1. I don’t think the fact that some Jews were shipped from Bialystock, which is less than 50 miles east of Treblinka, proves Treblinka was a death camp. Auschwitz was West of all the Aktion Reinhardt camps and the Revisionists, and Jewish survivors, say Jews were shipped from Treblinka to Auschwitz. Other Jewish survivors said they were shipped from Treblinka to Majdanek which is almost due south of Treblinka. I think once you were in eastern Poland directionality wasn’t the big thing. Bottom line is the Nazis wanted to get Jews from whatever cities were under their control to the big work camps like Auschwitz and Majdanek, and they had to make sure they entered the right work camp, given their skill set, and entered it lice free. So the Jews had to pass through camps like Treblinka. I think the name transit camp, which doesn’t really mean anything, should be changed to disinfestation and work assignment way station. Not as catchy, but far more descriptive.

    Comment by John McGrane — January 2, 2016 @ 11:20 am

  2. Watch the following revisionist documentaries on Treblinka here –

    Comment by Les — July 13, 2014 @ 1:03 am

  3. So when theres no more nazi guards to track down by the nazi hunters what are they going to do then, who will they look for then to blame

    Comment by soulsearcher — July 12, 2014 @ 5:44 am

    • The descendants of the Nazi guards will be to blame because they are born with “original sin” which means that they are guilty from the day that they are born. They cannot be baptized to wash away this sin.

      Comment by furtherglory — July 12, 2014 @ 7:28 am

  4. Sonderkommando

    I always thought the idea of a Sonderkommando of Jews to do the dirty work was one of the more absurd ‘Holocaust’ gas chamber stories. And to top it off, the Germans let some of them live to tell the tale. Someone named Anthony Lawson made a ‘Holocaust’ related video entitled Holocaust, Hate Speech & Were the Germans so Stupid — it won’t be hard to find if you want to search for it. To answer the question: Yes, apparently they were that stupid.

    The older guy looks like he’d be happy to make up all kinds of nonsense about his ‘Holocaust’ escapades because it makes people pay uncritical attention to him — it makes him look and feel important, even authoritative. Who would dare question anything he says? The younger one looks like a credulous ass.

    Comment by eah — July 11, 2014 @ 1:46 pm

  5. 800,000 gassed.

    In 16 months.


    Comment by DB — July 11, 2014 @ 8:39 am

    • No, there were 900,000 gassed at Treblika. There was one gas chamber which used the fumes from a diesel engine, and 10 new gas chambers that used Zyklon-B.

      Comment by furtherglory — July 11, 2014 @ 10:00 am

      • I do apologise, I seem to be having trouble keeping up with the figures. With the Auschwitz number falling by 3 million, Majdanek by 1.5 million, the difference has to be made up somewhere I suppose

        Comment by DB — July 11, 2014 @ 11:38 am

      • Other than your site, I can’t find a single reference to Zyklon B being used at Treblinka. I suspect you are mistaken. Can you scan the pamphlet you refer to here: ?

        Comment by blake121666 — July 11, 2014 @ 6:03 pm

        • I don’t have a scanner anymore. I had one of the first scanners ever sold. I scanned a lot of photos from books that I bought, and put them on my website.

          I looked up the quote in the pamphlet, and it is just as I have put it on my website: there was one gas chamber that used a diesel engine, and then 10 more gas chambers were built that used Zyklon-B.

          If there was no Zyklon-B used at Treblinka, this means that Jews were sent to the East without being disinfected. Remember that 4 million people died of typhus in World War I. The Nazis didn’t want to start another epidemic, but unfortunately, there were epidemics in all the camps.

          Comment by furtherglory — July 13, 2014 @ 6:26 am

          • Your pamphlet is wrong according to Wikipedia. I know Wiki is full of bullshit sometimes, but when it comes to Nazi concentration camps it’s not revisionist bullshit.

            Between August and September 1942, a large new building with a concrete foundation was built from bricks and mortar under the guidance of Action T4 euthanasia expert Erwin Lambert. It contained 8–10 gas chambers, each of which was 8 metres by 4 metres (26 ft by 13 ft), and it had a corridor in the centre. Stangl supervised its construction and brought in building materials from the nearby village of Małkinia by dismantling factory stock.[70] During this time victims continued to arrive daily and were led naked past the building site to the original gas chambers.[31] The new gas chambers became operational after five weeks of construction, equipped with two fume-producing engines instead of one…The killing process at Treblinka differed significantly from the method used at Auschwitz and Majdanek, where the poison gas Zyklon B (hydrogen cyanide) was used. At Treblinka, Sobibór, and Bełżec, the victims died from suffocation and carbon monoxide poisoning. After visiting Treblinka on a guided tour, Auschwitz commandant Rudolf Höss concluded that using exhaust gas was inferior to the cyanide used at his extermination camp.

            Comment by John McGrane — January 2, 2016 @ 10:37 am

            • Wikipedia is a kosher website. It is history, according to the Jews. If you want the revisionist side of the story, you have to go elsewhere.

              Comment by furtherglory — January 2, 2016 @ 11:51 am

  6. Of course when this chap dies the industry will find another “last survivor ” .It reminds me of the D Day celebrations …the one in 1984 with Ronald Reagan was supposed according to the media at the time to be the last big celebration as the veterans were becoming pensioners.

    Comment by peter — July 10, 2014 @ 4:52 pm

  7. Dammit! It’s “Reinhardt”!!!

    Comment by Schlageter — July 10, 2014 @ 4:39 pm

    • I am aware that the real experts call it Aktion Reinhardt, but most of my readers will know these camps as Operation Reinhard, which is the term used by Wikipedia. I have added a link to an article which explains the true story.

      Everything about Treblinka screams “transit camp” but the official history of the camp is that it was an “extermination” camp.

      Comment by furtherglory — July 11, 2014 @ 6:15 am

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