Nederlands Woordenlijst

Westerbork

Concentration camp and transit camp in the province of Drenthe
Westerbork Camp was built in 1939 with funds from the Jewish community in the Netherlands as a shelter for German Jewish refugees. On 1 July 1942 it was officially transformed into a transit camp and was placed under the command of the Sicherheitspolizei and the SD. Most of the nearly 107,000 Jews sent to the East were taken from Westerbork.

A few hundred Sinti and Roma and dozens of non-Jewish resistance fighters were deported via Westerbork as well. At first the trains left from the station in Hooghalen. Later, the railway tracks were extended into the camp.

Sanitary conditions left much to be desired: lice and fleas were rampant and the food was bad. There were special prison barracks for those who for example had been caught in hiding. People had to work hard in the camp, but simultaneously courses were taught in the camp, inmates could buy groceries with ‘camp money', and the camp commander Albert Konrad Gemmeker regularly allowed talented Jewish artists and musicians to perform.

Initially, the schedule of the trains to the East was irregular. From February 1943 they left every Tuesday. Ninety-three trains left from Westerbork to Eastern Europe, most of them to Auschwitz. In the period between March and July 1943 transports to Sobibor also took place.

 

 

WA
Wannsee Conference
Westerbork
Westerbork refugee camp
Westerweel group
Wieringermeer Youth Work Village