The International Campaign for Real History


What really went on at the Nazi concentration camp, Dachau, before (and after) April 1945?

January 28, 1998
gastight shower door at Dachau

Photo: Gastight shower door at Dachau camp.


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January 28, 1998

Mr. Erich Brudehl
1068 Keentz Rd.
Chehalis, Washington 98532

Dear Mr. Brudehl:

This letter is in response to your query as to whether there were any working gas chambers in Dachau and if any people were gassed. The following is taken from the Encyclopedia of the Third Reich (New York: MacMillan, 1991) article on Dachau:

"Dachau was not planned as an extermination camp; its prisoners were shot trying to escape or died of hunger, disease, and exhaustion, under torture or as victims of pseudoscientific experiments After the decision for the Final Solution, a crematorium, including a gas chamber - whose use, however, cannot be proved - was built in 1942. By November 1944, 3,225 physically and. mentally handicapped prisoners had been transferred to the euthanasia facility at Hartheim Castle and gassed."

This is consistent with other accounts of Dachau by scholars. American troops did claim that people were gassed there, but after Dachau trials and historical study, the consensus seems to be that people were routinely executed in many incredibly cruel ways, but not gassed.

Hope this helps and I would encourage you to do more research than I was able to do here with our limited staff and time.



Steven Vitto,
Library Technician

Holocaust Memorial Council
100 Raoul Wallenberg Place, SW Washington, DC 20024&emdash;2150, Telephone (202) 488-0400, Fax (202) 488-2690




United States


Erich Brudehl

Holocaust Memorial Museum

100 Raoul Wallenberg Place, SW.

Washington, DC. 20024 - 2150

1068 Koontz Rd.

Chehalis, Wash.




attn.: Mr Steven Vitto

Febr. 12, 1998


Dear Sirs:


Thanks for your letter from Jan. 1998 and for your encouragment to do some research on my own.

As part of this, my research, I still have a few questions I like to ask you:

1.) Why do you display a casting of a gas chamber door and not an original one?

2.) Does that casting in your Museum show the inside door handle latch, whereby you can open the door from the inside as well from the outside, like the one inMajdanek does, where you took your casting from?

3.) Where were the extermionation camps located in Germany?

4.) Was Auschwitz in Poland an extermination camp?


For your answers to my questions I do thank you very much.

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Erich Brudehl

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