The Dachau Museum in 1965
The photograph above, taken in the Dachau Museum in May 2001, shows a scene that was created in 1958 for an East German DEFA film. (Source: H. Obenaus, "Das Foto vom Baumhängen: Ein Bild geht um die Welt," in Stiftung Topographie des Terrors Berlin (ed.), Gedenkstätten-Rundbrief no. 68, Berlin, October 1995, pp. 3-8) This photo is not included in the new Dachau Museum which opened in 2003.
The photo below was scanned from the English language version of the Museum Guidebook for the 1965 museum. The caption under the photo says "The youngest of the French prisoners." In the background of the photo is a barrack building of the type used at Auschwitz II, also known as Birkenau. The Dachau concentration camp did not have barracks of this type, which clearly indicates that the photo was not taken at Dachau. Note also that the prison uniform does not have a badge, like those worn on the uniforms at Dachau. A prisoner in the background is wearing a yellow star on his uniform, like those worn by the Jews at Birkenau.
In the Dachau Museum, there is a large theater where a documentary film about Dachau is shown every hour. Beyond the door to the movie theater, there is a hallway; in 1965, this hallway was lined with photographs of the prisoners, taken after they had been liberated. The photo below is one of those that hung in the hallway. The prisoners in the photo are holding a sign which says that they lived in Barrack 27 in Room 4. Note that they are wearing caps which indicate that they were Communist political prisoners.
The hallway led to the commemorative room that you see in the two photographs below. These photographs show the glass cases on each side of the small room. These displays are now in a much larger space in the east wing of the service building.
Notice the pick triangle on the right in the photograph below. At the bottom of the plaque, the words read "To the homosexual victims of National Socialism, the homosexual initiatives of Munich, 1985." The inscription at the top reads "Beaten to death, killed again by silence."
The inscription on the triangle refers to the fact that homosexuals in all the Nazi concentration camps received very harsh treatment from their fellow prisoners, and after the war, the homosexuals were not included in the commemoration of the victims. The pink triangle at Dachau was first placed there on June 18, 1995.
In the early days of the Dachau camp, the "Kapos," who supervised the other prisoners, were German criminals who typically treated the homosexuals very badly. Later the internal administration of the Dachau camp was taken over by the Communist inmates. After the war, it was the Communists who designed and supervised the Dachau Memorial Site. There is no pink triangle on the bas relief sculpture at the International Monument, and also no green triangle in honor of the German criminals. The new 2003 Dachau museum mentions both the homosexuals and the German criminals as victims of the Nazis.
This page was last updated on March 15, 2008