A collection of photographs and written testimony from the Dachau concentration camp has been revealed to the public for the first time, following its discovery.
The hitherto unknown album had been assembled by Adrian Aloy, a member of the Belgian underground during World War II.
The recently discovered collection, set to go on sale next month at the Kedem Auction House, includes photographs taken from the liberation of Dachau, including during the period of reprisals by prisoners and US soldiers on S.S. guards who had run the camp prior to its liberation.
In the notes attached to the album, Aloy describes the American advance towards the camp.
“The Americans, who just a few days ago said they were located along the Danube, have already passed Augsburg… we can hear, barely, the sounds of battle.”
Aloy also noted the sudden change in the behavior of the S.S. guards shortly before the camp’s liberation.
“The discipline, which had been so merciless just a short time ago, has disappeared completely. The German officer Alphonse, a morally degenerated bully, is almost looking at us sweetly now.”
“The [Allied] attack on the camp is expected soon…you can see it in [the S.S. guards’] eyes… the white flag is waving in the entrance tower of the… S.S. guards. They’re waving the white flag!”
During the camp’s liberation, Aloy described how American soldiers gunned down captured S.S. guards, after the US soldiers discovered the atrocities committed by the German forces at Dachau.
“The shots are going off, and suddenly the first American soldiers appeared, rifles in hand, shoving the S.S. guards. Then right away, without mercy, they wiped them out without any trial.”
Some 200,000 people were held at the Dachau camp, roughly two-thirds of them Soviet prisoners or political prisoners of war – including a number of Catholic priests – and one-third of them Jews. Approximately 30,000 people are estimated to have been killed at Dachau.