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The Trains by William Heyen

Categories: Train

Franz Paul Stangl, Commandant of Hitler’s army in Berlin, sent out an order to those in charge of Trelbinka that any items from the Jews in the camp be shipped back to Berlin for use by the Germans.


Trelbinka was a Holocaust prisoner’s camp that was eventually closed. The Commandant in Berlin ordered that the items there, taken from prisoners, be shipped back to the command post for use by the Germans. The shipment was put into 248 freight cars and included clothing, 400,000 gold watches and women’s hair.

The clothing that was useful was kept while that which did not meet the German’s standards was used to make paper. The watches were melted down for their gold content and the hair of the women prisoners used to stuff mattresses or make dolls for little German girls.

Do the Germans use the paper made of the Jews’ clothes to write on? Do they wear the watches? Did they give a doll made of Jewish hair to someone they know or sleep on a mattress made from it? Commandant Stangl is gone but the name of the camp, Treblinka, lives on in the memory of the sound of the train cars carrying away the items of the Jews.

Treblinka stands for the prisoners’ clothing and watches and the women’s hair.

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The Trains by William Heyen. (2017, Mar 20). Retrieved from

The Trains by William Heyen
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