Exploration of German concentration camp Stutthof

In just two days work over a dozen 120-litre plastic bags were filled by remains of shoes as part of exploration of the German World War II Konzentrationslager Stutthof in northern Poland.

Some of the finds (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)
Some of the finds (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)

The former Nazi concentration camp covers an area of over 100 hectares in the vicinity of the Sztutowo village, located over 30 kilometres away from Gdańsk. The exploration is being conducted  for a year now. The impulse for it was an accidental discovery of large numbers of shoe remains in the are of the former camp. These finds were possibly a portion of the footwear that was once repaired in the camp’s forced labour workshops. There are also documents attesting to the finds of large numbers of shoes at the camp at the moment when it was freed.

A find of a child's shoe (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)
A find of a child’s shoe (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)

Do far the survey resulted in numerous and unique objects connected with the camp’s functioning. There are objects belonging to both the SS guards and the camp’s prisoners. Some of the artefacts have underwent conservation works and can be seen at the Stutthof Museum.

Exploration of the camp's area (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)
Exploration of the camp’s area (by Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)

(after Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Gdańsku)

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