[All photos on this page were sent to me by Alan Collins along with permission to use them]
The Chelmno death camp has historical significance because it is the first place where Jews were allegedly gassed in the genocide known as the Holocaust, which allegedly took the lives of six million Jews. The current official number of Jewish deaths in the Holocaust is 1.1 million.
According to Holocaust historian Martin Gilbert, the “Final Solution” began when 700 Jews from the Polish village of Kolo arrived at Chelmno on the evening of December 7, 1941 and on the following day, all of them were killed with carbon monoxide in gas vans. The victims were taken on 8 or 9 separate journeys in the gas vans to a clearing in the Rzuchowski woods near the town of Chelmno.
In his book entitled “Holocaust,” Martin Gilbert wrote the following:
On 7 December 1941, as the first seven hundred Jews were being deported to the death camp at Chelmno, Japanese aircraft attacked the United States Fleet at Pearl Harbor. Unknown at that time either to the Allies or the Jews of Europe, Roosevelt’s day that would “live in infamy” was also the first day of the “final solution.”
The text on the Memorial stone, in the photo above, says that “about 350,000 Jews – Men, women and children – were murdered at Chelmno.”
Martin Gilbert wrote in his book, entitled “Holocaust,” that 360,000 Jews were killed at Chelmno, just in the first phase of the killing, between December 7, 1941 and March 1943.
The US Holocaust Memorial Museum says that “at least 152,000” Jews were killed at Chelmno.
The Museum at the villa in Wannsee, near Berlin, says that “152,000 Jews and 5,000 Gypsies” were killed at Chelmno.
In other words, none of the Holocaust experts seem to know how many Jews were killed at Chelmno. My guess is that no Jews were killed there. I believe that Chelmno was a transit camp, where Jews were held until they could be sent on to a concentration camp.
Wait a minute! The Nazis provided tombstones for the Jews who were killed at Chelmno? Still, the Nazis get no respect!
You can read more about Chelmno on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Poland/Chelmno/index.html