"MAUTHAUSEN - 186 steps to death" Top 5 Page for this destination Mauthausen by Diana75
Mauthausen Travel Guide: 44 reviews and 124 photos
Who could ever think that this peaceful Austrian town lodged once a place of so much pain?
Located 20 km away from Linz, the little town of Mauthausen was the point were in August 1938 Himmler decided to build a new concentration camp in order to supply slave labor for the Wiener Graben stone quarry.
Mauthausen was classified as "category three camp", the most violent one and was mostly used for extermination through labor of educated people from the countries subjugated by Germany during World War II.
The estimated number of prisoners brought to Mauthausen was of 335,000, most of them being forced to do hard labor in a rock quarry.
By the time of liberation, in May 1945, the estimated number of victims was approximately 150,000, but the SS officers destroyed the evidences and only approximately 40,000 victims could have been identified.
The rock quarry was at the base of the "186 stairs of death".
Prisoners were forced to carry enormous rocks up the 186 stairs, one behind the other, in a long line.
Due to the exhaustion, when one prisoner fell, a shocking domino effect was created.
The prisoners who survived to this were forced to stay in a line at the edge of a cliff known as "The Parachute Jump".
Each of them had the option of being shot or push the prisoner in front of the cliff.
In the summer time the wake up hour was 4:45 am, while in the winter was 5:15 am, and the working day ended at 7 pm.
The prisoners were divided into two groups: one hacking into the granite and the other carrying the rocks up the 186 steps to the top of the quarry.
Beside the terrifying 186 steps, another killing methods used in Mauthausen included: gas chambers, freezing showers (the prisoners died hypothermia), medical experiments or hanging.
Today's Mauthausen Concentration Camp is a monument which should never let us forget the pain of our ancestors.
The fee for Mauthausen Concentration Camp is EUR 2- for adults and the ticket can be bought from the entrance. Audio... more travel advice
On the green field at the entrance in the Concentration Camp, numerous nations subjugated by Germany during the World... more travel advice
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