Researching Prisoners’ Fates
Even today, people from around the world send inquiries to memorial sites each and every day. They want to find out what happened to relatives who were imprisoned in concentration camps. Are there perhaps documents that could provide information about their persecution and fate? Research Stories provides some insights into the scholarly work at the memorial sites. Looking through the written records of the concentration camp administrations, employees attempt to reconstruct what happened in the camps. However, since the SS destroyed many documents, this can be something like detective work.
The internet has transformed this research. In the meanwhile, archival holdings have often been made available online. People who contact a memorial site these days have frequently done some initial research themselves. Yet in order to be able to interpret documents such as a transport list, for instance, special knowledge is required. That is why we want to share our experiences working with the memorial site archives and provide a guide for your own research.