Bad Memories on Paper we Have to Remember – Holocaust Part II

Enjoy” a run of posts, a sequence of bad memories on paper that we certainly have to remember… 

Concentration Camp Dachau established, 1933


Dachau, located 15 kilometers from Munich in Bavaria, was the Nazis’ first major concentration camp, built on the site of an abandon World War I munitions factory. Heinrich Himmler announced its creation at a March 20, 1933, news conference. The first prisoners – Communists and Socialists – arrived on March 22.

At the beginning, Dachau had a capacity for 4,000 inmates. By September 1944, the prisoner population had grown to about 100,000.

Dachau was the only camp that lasted for the entire 12 years of the Third Reich; it was liberated by the United States Army on April 29, 1945.

On May 5, 1933, (as we read on the postcard’s cancellation: Dachau 5.MAI.33)  Josef Haff, who had been a Nazi since 1929, wrote to his family as he sipped beer during his mid-day break, his third day of duty as a concentration camp guard. He found life at the camp to be pleasant.

The picture side of his postcard is a view of the Amper valley from the south, with the Würm river canal flowing past the west side of the prison compound.

The larger item is an official document attesting to Haff’s satisfactory service as a Dachau guard from May 3 to September 16, 1933. These pieces belong to Spungen Family Foundation.


KO for eCharta

6 thoughts on “Bad Memories on Paper we Have to Remember – Holocaust Part II

  1. Very interesting stuff. I think it’s important for us – especially we folks who had no firsthand experience with the holocaust – to confront this kind of evidence. We contemporary Americans usually focus on the *horrors* of the holocaust and war – but these things existed right alongside ‘normal’ life for a lot of people, like Mr. Haff.

    It’s easy to identify ‘evil’ in hindsight, but obviously less easy to realize when you’re in the middle of it. I worry about this sometimes.

  2. first i wanted to thank you for stopping by my blog and reading my post “holocaust remembrance day.” second – this is very interesting and definitely ties in with some of what i was writing about (as far as my blog as a whole is concerned – i love that last element; that’s what i hope to accomplish is the sharing of ideas and thoughts). anyway, as the previous commenter said – it’s even the smallest things that need to be remembered also because it’s those things that demonstrate the horrors that are about to begin. if those things had been paid attention to, would the holocaust been what it had? thanks for sharing this!

    • Thanks YOU for dropping by! We are going to show hundreds of items about holocaust during WW2. This is just the begging. Very rare, unique and emotionally strong items are coming in next posts! Items until the end of the war in 1945. Stay tuned!


      • i will definitely stay tuned! i love history and how rich it is – even the ugly has something to offer. i’ll be looking forward to what else you post. 🙂

  3. Came by to thank you for visiting Mused by Magdalene and found this. Thank you for this posting – people do forget and we mustn’t. The postcard was such an effective reminder- horrifying in its banality. On a less somber note, I loved the art peppering your pages!

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