MEMORIAL AND MUSEUM

AUSCHWITZ-BIRKENAU

FORMER GERMAN NAZI
CONCENTRATION AND EXTERMINATION CAMP

1960-1969

1960

  • the first national exhibitions are opened: Czechoslovakia and Hungary.  

1961

  • the International Auschwitz Committee decides to prepare a new plan for the construction of a Birkenau monument;
  • the Soviet and DDR (East German) national exhibitions open.

1962

  • inaugural session of the Polish National Committee for the Construction of an International Auschwitz Monument;
  • the notes of Sonderkommando prisoner Zalmen Lewental are found buried near Birkenau Crematorium II.  

1963

  • the Hiroshima-Auschwitz Peace March;
  • the maintenance and preservation program for the former Birkenau camp goes into effect; the ruins of Crematorium II and its gas chambers are secured; buildings, roads, and fences are preserved, the grounds are drained, and plant growth is brought under control.

1964

  • Rada Ochrony Pomników Walki i Męczeństwa (The Council for the Protection of Monuments to Struggle and Martyrdom) decides to aid the International Auschwitz Committee by seeing to the construction of the monument, which is erected according to a design approved by the Board of the International Auschwitz Committee and the Minister of Culture and Art;
  • the Frankfurt am Main Court Jury investigates the Auschwitz crime scene.  

1965

  • opening of the Belgian national exhibition.

1966

  • unveiling of the monument in Monowice to the victims of Auschwitz III; the monument was paid for by donations from the residents of Oswiecim and the vicinity.

1966-1968

  • sociological research on the young people visiting the Auschwitz site;
  • initiation of cooperation with the Sign of Penance movement from Germany. Groups of German young people come to the Museum to work at grounds keeping.

1966

  • international mass demonstration at the Birkenau site.

1967

  • unveiling of the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism in Birkenau, with approximately 200,000 people in attendance. Polish state officials, prisoners' organizations from many countries, the Israeli welfare minister, the East German and Italian foreign ministers, and numerous ambassadors and journalists are present.
  • the Museum Visitor Services Center is opened.

1968

  • examination of the crime scenes at Birkenau, Monowitz, and the Lederfabrik by the Frankfurt-am-Main Court;
  • opening of the "Struggle and Martyrdom of the Jews" exhibition in block No. 27;
  • opening of the Danish national exhibition;
  • victims' hair is cleaned in the preservation workshops, with special apparatus used to remove approximately 100 kg. of dust, restoring the natural color of the hair.

1969

  • intensive restoration work on the ruins of Crematoria II and III and their gas chambers, the barracks in Sector BIa, the roofs of the barracks in the quarantine camp and of the guard towers; preservation work on 35,000 brushes, 642 suitcases, 119 striped camp uniforms, and 500 various other objects. Preservation work is also done on the railroad platform (ramp) in Birkenau where trains full of deportees to Auschwitz were unloaded and where the SS carried out selections of the newly arrived Jewish transports.