Wooden screen hides Dachau gas chamber


Bodies of SS soldiers on the left, naked bodies of prisoners on the right

The photograph above was taken by the US Army a few days after the liberation of the camp. It shows a wooden screen in front of the east wall of Baracke X. The screen is 16 feet long and extends 6 feet out from the wall. There is no roof over the area behind the screen. Hidden by this screen are the two bins through which Zyklon B pellets could be poured through the wall onto the floor of the gas chamber. Holocaust historians believe that the screen was placed in front of the wall by the Nazis in order to hide their activity from the prisoners. However, the Report of the Atrocities Committed at Dachau Concentration Camp, signed by Col. David Chavez, Jr., JAGD, 7 May 1945, states that this screen was a "Wooden shed believed to contain a pump or compressor." The Chavez Report was entered into the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal as Documents 159L and 2430-PS.

The prisoners' barracks were located behind the camera but Baracke X was hidden from the inmates by a line of closely-planted poplar trees, which were 20 feet high. In spite of all this secrecy, the inmates knew that Dachau was a death factory and they informed the liberators and the press about the infamous gas chamber. It was already known throughout the world, as early as June 1942, that the Nazis were murdering millions of Jews in gas chambers.