Buchenwald Concentration camp was established on July 16, 1937 by the Nazis. This is where the first group of prisoners, 300 literate, educated Jews, helped to build the entrance gate. As WWII started and progressed, the numbers of Jews shipped to Buchenwald increased. In fact, by March 1945 the population at the camps reached an all time high with 80,436 prisoners in the premises.
Buchenwald Concentration camp wasn't just a killing of Jews camp. The camp did have multiple cremation stations, but for the most part they put the prisoners to work. It is known to be a slave labor camp. The first commander of Buchenwald was SS Officer Karl-Otto Koch. Koch was imprisoned and killed by the Nazi soon after because he took bribes from Jews.
The second and final commander was SS Colonel Hermann Pister. In 1947 Pister was sentenced to be hanged. However, Pister died in prison before his sentence could be done. Besides the cremation of the prisoners; the most common execution tool was injections. Thousands were killed from injections alone. The Nazi also used ill prisoners with typhus for experiments. The prisoners at Buchenwald weren’t just from Germany. There were prisoners from 51 different nationalities living in these terrible conditions.
Jews were treated as if they weren’t even human. Some Jews were even skinned. The grossest part about that is that skin was given to the guards and visitors for book covers. In all, 56,545 lives were taken away in the concentration camp. On April 11, 1945, the US Third Army (Sixth Division) liberated the camp. Tens of thousands of prisoners were free at last from the hate brought out by the Nazi.