Page Twelve

The Holocaust: Transport to the East

The Nazis’ plan to annihilate the Jews of western, central, and southern Europe typically unfolded in stages. First: identification, arrest, expropriation of property, and incarceration in camps. Second: deportation to ghettos in Poland. Third: transport to death camps for extermination. For example, expulsion of Jews from Bratislava, Slovakia, to ghettos in Poland began in the fall of 1941 and continued through the spring of 1942, one destination being the Lublin Jewish ghetto, which quickly swelled to a population of 34,000. Transports from the Lublin ghetto to the Belzec death camp began on March 17, 1942. By the end of April only 4,000 were still alive at Lublin. That remnant group was shipped to Majdanek for gradual extermination. By May 1943, nearly all had perished.

Pictured Above: This 1.50-koruna-plus-1.50-koruna message and reply post card, canceled at Bratislava on August 26, 1942, and censored at Vienna, is addressed to Egon Klopstock in care of the Lublin ghetto Jewish Council. The destination space states that the addressee was on an April 1942 transport to Lublin. The reply portion was never returned; it is still attached. In all probability, Egon Klopstock had already been gassed to death by the time this card was mailed to him.

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