MEMORIAL AND MUSEUM

AUSCHWITZ-BIRKENAU

FORMER GERMAN NAZI
CONCENTRATION AND EXTERMINATION CAMP

Task 4

Task 4 Modernisation of the storage areas for suitcases

Completed in 2012

Under the task titled Modernisation of the storage areas for suitcases comprehensive modernisation of storage areas for suitcases continued.
Once the design of the new cabinets for the suitcases was made and the available storage area assessed, it turned out that two storage facilities used so far are insufficient for storage of all suitcases. This is due to the change in the arrangement of the suitcases in the cabinets. Therefore it was decided that items from one of the storage facilities would be moved to another storage block to make room for the third warehouse for suitcases.

Items which were moved first, were to be measured in order to be able to plan the size of new, secure packaging and the arrangement of items on shelves which had been purchased to this end, to use the storage space to the maximum. Packaging was designed for each group of items to ensure optimum safety of museum collections. New acid-free cardboard boxes were designed and made; metal items were additionally secured and packed to prevent corrosion.

The condition of the collection was checked and items separated depending on the various materials of which they were made. First of all, plastic items were singled out to be moved to the warehouse where only plastic items are stored. The separation of the items was important, as decaying materials endanger the collections of items made of other materials.

In 2012, thanks to the preparation of the first room for storing suitcases, more than 22 500 items were secured in new packaging.

In 2012, the Museum carried out and finalised the tendering procedure for the production of suitcase cabinets. They will be locked, light, safe and made of materials which are fire–resistant and do not react with the suitcase material. For the storage area to be optimised, the height between the retractable perforated shelves will be chosen on an individual basis, depending on the size of each item.

Ultimately, the appearance of cabinets results from the analysis of preservation needs. Such aspects as the size of suitcases, the storage space available and the conservation of items were taken into account. This solution is special in that the cabinets were customised to accommodate the suitcases.
More than 1800 suitcases which area the most recognisable and inextricably connected with the history of KL Auschwitz-Birkenau will be secured under the project.

Completed in 2013

Thanks to the EU financial support work on modernisation of storage facilities for suitcases intensified. An additional storage facility for suitcases was completed. Items stored were transferred to another storage block. The items were classified in view of material of which they were made and new customised packaging was designed and made for them.

Renovation work of all (three) storage areas for suitcases is now finished. Before that a conservation study was executed and a new programme of renovation work was developed. New safe lighting was installed, the walls were painted and a new surface layer put in one storage facility, and then new specialist cabinets for suitcases were installed in the storage areas.

The cabinets are customised, locked, light and secure, made of materials which are fire–resistant and do not react with the suitcase material. For the storage area to be optimised, the height between the retractable perforated shelves can be chosen on an individual basis, depending on the size of each item. 

Completed in 2014

In this year the works connected with the modernisation of three storage areas for suitcases came to an end. Under the task ”Modernisation of storage area for suitcases” continued since 2012, three storage areas were made ready for the storage of more 1800 post-camp suitcases.

Before the objects were moved into the storage rooms, the analysis of microbiological cleanness of  the rooms was also carried out. Then the climate cabinets and ducts were also cleaned and disinfected and the microbiological cleanness of the storage facilities was confirmed by a repeated analysis

Before the suitcases were placed in the cabinets, all the suitcases were cleaned, and then put on the shelves in the storage rooms.  

Completed in 2015

In January 2015, continuing the task ” Modernisation of the storage areas for suitcases”, works on comprehensive modernisation of the fourth storage building was started. The layout plan for the situation of specialist cabinets for suitcases in the storage rooms was designed. Works consisting of disinfection and preparation of the floor for placing the floor-covering were also conducted. In addition, new lighting was installed with regulated light intensity, ensuring safety of exhibits.

The last stage of the project was installation of 30 new specialist cabinets for suitcases in the fourth storage room, thanks to them, it will be possible to store about 700 historical suitcases in a manner that ensures safety of the objects. 

.

Notice: The sole responsibility lies with the author and the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.