Bunker at Monowitz

Ruins of Bomb Shelter in former Monowitz camp

The photo above shows the ruins of a bomb shelter which the Nazis built near the Monowitz factories. The barracks where the prisoners lived at Monowitz have all been torn down and replaced by houses. The people on the left in the photo are Polish residents, not tourists. Note the street sign on the left; this building is on an ordinary city street in Oswiecim.

The factories at Monowitz were built by the IG Farben company, which was attempting to produce synthetic rubber, called Buna. The Polish village of Monowice, which was renamed Monowitz by the Germans, is 4 kilometers from the site of the factories, which were located on the east side of Oswiecim. Some of the old factory buildings are still standing, although now abandoned, while others are still in use as factories. The concrete wall around the factories, with its distinctive curved posts, can still be seen along the road from Oswiecim to the Krakow airport.

The Monowitz sub-camp was known as Bunalager (Buna Camp) until November 1943 when it became the KL Auschwitz III camp with its own administrative headquarters. Auschwitz III consisted of 28 sub-camps which were built between 1942 and 1944. This area of Upper Silesia was known as the "Black Triangle" because of its coal deposits. The Buna plant attracted the attention of the Allies, and there were several bombing raids on the factories.

Electrical wires and street light at bunker ruins


Buna Werke

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