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FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

What if the database does not contain the name of the person I am looking for?

We should remember that the Nazis destroyed most of the documents they created and that a list with the names of all Auschwitz victims does not exist. If the name of a person looked for does not appear in this database there is still a chance it is included in other documents, which are not online yet. To find out more you should contact the the Office for Information on Former Prisoners.

What should I do to obtain more detailed information on a given person?

In order to obtain a certified copy of a death certificate from the Museum archives, if such a document exists (see above), you should send a letter marked “Archives” to the Museum address, stating the reason you wish to obtain this information.

How many names of deportees to Auschwitz do the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Archives contain?

Aside from the names in this data base, various document collections now being processed contain information on tens of thousands of Auschwitz Concentration Camp prisoners. It must also be borne in mind that the Nazis destroyed the majority of the camp records in their effort, at the end of the war, to destroy evidence of the crimes they had committed.

Will the names of other Auschwitz prisoners in the Museum archives also be made available?

As work progresses, it is planned to make the data contained in other document collections available, namely the Soviet POW Death Book, the Bunker (Death Block) Book, and the Daily Prisoner Count Books (Stärkebücher).

How many victims of Auschwitz were there?

The total number of victims of Auschwitz from 1940-1945 is estimated at between 1,100,000 and 1,500,000 people. The majority, and above all the mass transports of Jews who arrived after 1942, died in the gas chambers.

How many people were registered as prisoners in Auschwitz?

From among the more than one million deportees to Auschwitz, some 400,000 people (200,000 Jews, over 140,000 Poles, some 20,000 Gypsies from various countries, over 10,000 Soviet POWs, and over ten thousand prisoners of other nationalities) were registered and placed in the camp and its sub-camps. Over half of them are estimated to have died in the camp.

What scope of prisoners numbers were set up in Auschwitz?

The scope of numbers

The number series

1 – 202499

main series - men

1 – 12000

"R" Soviet POWs

1 – 9 000

"EH" – men

1 –     2 000

"EH" - women

1 –   90 000

main series - women

1 –   10 094

"Z" – Sinti and Roma men

1 –   10 888

"Z" - Sinti and Roma women

1 –   20 000

"A" – Jewish men

1 –   15 000

"B" - Jewish men

1 –   30 000

"A" - Jewish women

1 –   3 000

"PH" – police prisoners

404 481

in total


Are the causes of death, as given in the German records, accurate?

While appearing completely normal, the posthumous documentation supplied by the camp authorities was part of the effort to conceal evidence of crimes. German physicians most frequently specified the following causes of death: acute gastritis, pneumonia, or coronary insufficiency. 

Such causes of death frequently bore no relation to reality, as can be seen in the cases of prisoners assigned one of these causes of death when it is known from other sources that they were shot, killed by lethal injection of phenol, gassed, shot while escaping, or hanged in public.