From Eleven Nations

Even as late as the end of March 1945, transports from cleared jails and subcamps were still reaching Buchenwald daily. The camp was getting more and more crowded. On 30 March 1945, the SS registered, among others, 157 new arrivals from the cleared labour education camp in Hessian Breitenau.

The Kassel Gestapo had set up the labour education camp in the building complex of a former monastery in 1940. The site had previously served as a concentration camp and a workhouse. Thousands of forced labourers, most of them foreigners, were detained there as a means of punishment and discipline for alleged work-related offences.

The transport of 30 March brought inmates from eleven nations, mostly Soviets, Poles and Frenchmen. After a few days in the misery of the Little Camp, the majority of them were sent on a death march. The 17-year-old Polish farm worker Jozef Borowiec was the youngest, the 68-year-old Josef Michel the oldest. Their fates have not been clarified.

(Stefan Lochner)

Reference: Gunnar Richter, Das Arbeitserziehungslager Breitenau (1940-1945). Ein Beitrag zum nationalsozialistischen Lagersystem: Straflager, Haftstätte und KZ-Durchgangslager der Gestapostelle Kassel für Gefangene aus Hessen und Thüringen, Kassel 2009.