Wall of Suitcases in Poland of Those Sent to Concentration Camps During World War II

A wall of suitcases, symbolizing the deportation of Jews to death camps, forms part of a permanent exhibition at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland. Each suitcase is a family, a life. It looks like a monument to the crime of humanity.

The Auschwitz museum says some of the victims’ 3,800 suitcases have been put into a state-of-the-art protective storage room partly funded by the European Union. Many of the suitcases are signed by their owners.

One is from Else Sara Ury, a German-language Jewish author of children’s books popular in Germany in the 1920s and 1930s. She died in an Auschwitz gas chamber in 1943. More than 1.1 million people, mostly European Jews, died at the Nazi death camp from 1940-45 during World War II.


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