Old Sentry Box & Kitchen at Auschwitz I

Old sentry box on Appellplatz where prisoners assembled for roll call

The 1998 photograph above shows an old sentry box that was probably there when this was a military garrison. It stands in front of the Appellplatz or Roll Call Place, where the prisoners had to assemble every morning and evening to be counted. Every prisoner had to be accounted for, to make sure that no one had escaped from the camp. When the Auschwitz I camp was used as a Polish military garrison, the Appellplatz was the exercise yard.

Old sentry box and gallows in front of brick kitchen buildings

On the right in the photo above are two brick buildings that are part of the camp kitchen. Between the two buildings is an opening into the courtyard in the center of the kitchen building.

To the right, behind the sentry box, in front of the second low brick kitchen building, you can see the posts of a reconstructed gallows. On July 19, 1943, there was a mass hanging of 12 Polish political prisoners here in reprisal for the escape of 3 prisoners. The gallows was not high enough and the victims died an agonizing death, according to my 1998 tour guide.

The aerial photo below shows the Auschwitz I camp; the kitchen building, painted white, is in the first row of buildings after you enter the Arbeit Macht Frei gate.

Aerial view of Auschwitz I concentration camp

The photo below shows the sentry box in the background on the left and the opening into the kitchen courtyard. Note the chimneys for the kitchen on the left side of the photo. The original kitchen building is now painted white, just as it was in January 1945 when the camp was liberated by the Soviet Army. On the right in the photo below is Block 16, one of the barracks buildings.

Former exercise yard was where prisoners assembled for roll call

The photo below shows the reconstructed gallows in the foreground with two wings of the kitchen building in the background. According to a sign in the camp in 2005, when Polish prisoners continued to escape, their relatives were arrested and brought to the camp as hostages. The kitchen building was not identified when I visited in 1998.

Gallows where Polish prisoners were hanged in 1943

According to the Auschwitz Museum web site, there are plans to use the kitchen building as an Art Museum to show the paintings and drawings done by the prisoners.

Commandant's house & old theater

Gas Chamber

Introduction to Auschwitz I

Entrance to Auschwitz I

Inside the Visitor's Center

Exit from the Visitor's Center

Entrance through "Arbeit Macht Frei" Gate

Auschwitz Museum Exhibits

Swimming Pool

Block 11 - the camp prison

Prison Cells Inside Block 11

Standing Cells in Block 11

The Black Wall

Kitchen & other buildings in Auschwitz I

Barracks Buildings in Auschwitz 1

Back to Photo Gallery 1


This page was updated on July 28, 2009