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United States soldiers listen intently as political prisoners tell their story.

Photograph | Photograph Number: 55167

United States soldiers listen intently as political prisoners tell their story.

Original caption reads:
The Nazis Burn the Living
When troops of the Ninth U.S. Army reached Gardelegen, Germany, they found the still- smoldering bodies of more than 1,000 political prisoners whom the Nazis had forced into a fuel soaked barn and burned to death. A mass of human flesh was smoking when American troops arrived on the scene and discovered from fugitives of the concentration camp that the atrocity had been committed by German troops and Luftwaffe personnel from a nearby airfield. Residents of the town of Gardelegen, 27 miles northwest of Madgeburg, were immediately compelled by U.S. officers to disinter approximately 700 partially buried dead and to bury all the charred victims.

THIS PHOTO SHOWS: A U. S. soldier (left) listens with clenched fists as two survivors of the barn funeral pyre tell their stories to war correspondents. Vladimire Wognia (center) of Lwow, Poland, imprisoned for releasing Polish prisoners being sent to Germany in 1942, ran through a hole in the burning barm, was shot at and ran back. Later, he escaped again and shouted in German to the Nazi guards to stop shooting. The brief confusion allowed him to escape in the dark. Eugene Sieradzki (right) kept alive by keeping his mouth to a hole in the barn. He was covered with bodies from Friday, April 13, until Sunday.

1945 April 13
Gardelegen, [Prussian Saxony; Saxony-Anhalt] Germany
Photo Credit
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Joseph Eaton
Record last modified: 2012-02-28 00:00:00
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