The Death Marches

Death marches was basically used to travel the prisoners from one place to another. They would normally travel in terrible weather conditions. Sometimes the guards would abuse them for for fun and if the prisoners had a hard time keeping up they would be killed. These marches continued until the end of the Holocaust.

A visual of how the death marches

Prisoners marching to Dachau

In the summer of 1944, Salvator Moshe was among 4,000 Jews force-marched from Warsaw to the extermination camp at Dachau.

Before the Holocaust

Salvator Moshe was born in Salonika, Greece, on September 10, 1915. His whole family was transported to Auschwitz. His whole family died but him and his brother-in-law. In August 1943, Salvator and his brother-in-law was sent to clear debris from the destroyed Warsaw Ghetto. After doing this they was forced into a death march to Dachau. Getting close to the end of the war the Nazis transported the prisoners by train and planned to kill them all in the Austrian Tirol, but they were rescued en route by the U.S. Army near Seeshaupt, Germany.

During the holocaust

"I was jealous when somebody else can die and I can't die," this is what Salvator told the people at a interview.

Salvatore Moshe also told an interviewer:"They forced the civilian people to look, just to look.

I was standing there. A woman, she didn't believe it, you know, she turned her face. The officers, the American officers, gave her a slap in her face — a push, not a slap,

'Just look, don't turn your face away.' Now, the guards are still there. They're going to transport — where, we don't know.

One of the officers, American officer, was spoken French, I spoke French with him. He gave me his gun, he says, 'Shoot anyone you want to from these German guards, who you think was one of the bad ones.'

I never took his gun, I didn't want to. I was crazy from the freedom. And for twenty-four hours after freedom we had the right to take, to go in the house, in the store, to take anything you want, anything you want!

A lot of people became rich. A lot of people became rich. Gold and diamonds and this and this.

I went and asked a German woman and I begged for a handkerchief, that's all. I was — just to have a handkerchief. I was happy to have a handkerchief to blow my nose.

After the twenty-four hours, everything was normal. You could touch nothing. And they put us in different places, you know, to stay, to live."

Salvator Moshe died in 1993.

Salvator Moshe travels during the Holocaust


The evacuation of nearly 50,000 jewish  prisoners begins from the Stutthof camp system in northern Poland.

About 5,000 prisoners from Stutthof subcamps were marched to the Baltic Sea coast, forced into the water, and machine gunned. The rest of the prisoners were marched in the direction of Lauenburg in eastern Germany. They were cut off by advancing Soviet forces. The Germans forced the surviving prisoners back to Stutthof. Marching in severe winter conditions and treated brutally by SS guards, thousands died during the march. Soviet forces liberated Stutthof on May 9, 1945, and liberated about 100 prisoners who had managed to hide during the final evacuation of the camp.

Prisoners about to be killed

Works Cited:

Death Marches. S.l.: Book On Demand, 2013. N. pag. Print. (n.d.): n. pag. Web.

"Unrestrained Freedom for a Group of Survivors | Excerpts | Oral Histories: Wisconsin Survivors of the Holocaust | Wisconsin Historical Society." Unrestrained Freedom for a Group of Survivors | Excerpts | Oral Histories: Wisconsin Survivors of the Holocaust | Wisconsin Historical Society. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 May 2015.

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