web analytics
March 2, 2015 / 11 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Radegast Station Of Lodz

       The name Radegast Station might not be familiar to most people. But for those who were in the Lodz Ghetto during the war, it was a place that brought chills to the bones. It was at the Radegast train station where newcomers arrived from all over Europe when they were sent to the overcrowded Lodz Ghetto. And it was from there that they were sent to their final destination, Chelmno or Auschwitz – from which there was no return. By the end of August 1944, more then 150,000 Jews were sent to their deaths from this small depot on the outskirts of the ghetto.

 

         A few years ago, I reported that the actual building that had been used by the Nazis to hold the Jews awaiting transport had been found. When I visited the site, it was owned by a local non-Jewish Pole and was being used as a woodshop by day and a hangout by night. The building was covered with graffiti, and there was no sign of its former use other than its location alongside active train tracks.

 

         When I recently visited the site three weeks ago, I saw there had been a tremendous transformation. Gone is the graffiti, the empty vodka bottles and the garbage. In their place is a memorial befitting the honor due the victims who passed through the site. The original building has been cleaned up and the inside is left a stark white, with pictures hanging from the ceilings showing life in the ghetto.

 



The Radegast Station as it appears today.


 

         Outside sit two railroad cars similar to those in which victims were transported to the death camps. One of the cars is left open, so that one may enter the car to experience what it was like inside, even for a brief moment. Often people come out in a hurry with a sense of horror from the claustrophobic conditions, not being able to imagine what it must have been like for the victims who often had to spend days confined in such cars.

 

         On the perimeter of the site is a monument showing the places of origin of the victims, as well as an explanation of what occurred there.

 

         For many people, the most moving part of the memorial is the long tunnel to nowhere. The designers of the memorial continued the track where the railcars are sitting in a long dark tunnel. This is where lights that are lit up by sensors reveal lists of the people who were transported to their deaths 60 years ago.

 

         Also very moving is the list of children’s names. It was on September 4, 1942, that Chaim Ruminkowski, “the king of the ghetto,” delivered his famous speech asking that the Jews give up their children so that they may live. Most resisted, but the roundups were persistent and continued for nine days.

 

         After the roundup, nearly 6,000 children and 10,000 adults unable to work were sent from the Radegast Station to their deaths at Chelmno. Embedded with the lists of people are small items found during the building of the memorial. Small buttons, a piece of broken pottery, an eyeglass frame; the only remains of the thousands of children who passed through.

 

         At the end of the tunnel is a memorial flame at the bottom of a chimney, whose walls are engraved with the names of the cities and towns from where the victims came. The chimney is a chilling reminder of how most of the victims’ remains were destroyed by fire.

 

         It is both touching and disturbing when a train whistle sounds during a ceremony at the Radegast Station and a modern cargo train passes by.

 

         The city of Lodz has further plans for the site, including a learning center for the study of what took place at the Radegast Station and in the Lodz Ghetto.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Radegast Station Of Lodz”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Some 1,500 teens from around the world at the Chabad CTeen convention hear a personal greeting from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on March 1, 2015.
Ban Ki-moon Greets 1,500 Jewish Teens at Chabad CTeen Convention
Latest Sections Stories
Golan Wine Medals

‘Double Gold’ awarded to 2012 Yarden Heights wine & 2011 Yarden Merlot Kela Single Vineyard.

Niehaus-022715

One should not give the money before Purim morning or after sunset.

Mendlowitz-022715-Basket

The mishloach manos of times gone by were sometimes simple and sometimes elaborate, but the main focus was on the preparation of the delicious food they contained.

Astaire-022715-Countryside

One of the earliest special Purims we have on record was celebrated by the Jews of Granada and Shmuel HaNagid, the eleventh-century rav, poet, soldier and statesman, and one of the most influential Jews in Muslim Spain.

Jews, wake up! Stop educating the world and start educating yourselves.

The lessons conform to the sensitivities and needs of the Orthodox community…

The program took on special significance as it marked not only the first anniversary of Rebbetzin Kudan’s levayah but also the 27th yahrzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka Schneerson, a”h.

It captures the love of the Jewish soul as only Shlomo Hamelech could portray it – and as only Rabbi Miller could explain it.

Erudite and academic, drawing from ancient and modern sources, the book can be discussed at the Shabbos table as well as in kollel.

I’m here to sit next to you and help you through this Purim with three almost-too-easy mishloach manot ideas, all made with cost-conscious paper bags.

Kids want to be like their friends, and they want to give and get “normal” mishloach manos stocked with store-bought treats.

Whenever he did anything loving for me, I made a big deal about it.

“OMG, it’s so cute, you’re so cute, everything is so cute.”

A program that started with a handful of volunteers has grown exponentially to include students from a wider array of backgrounds.

More Articles from Shmuel Ben Eliezer
Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Lauder receiving a special album from Rabbi Maciej Pawlak, director of the Lauder-Morasha school in Warsaw.

In 1989 he hosted a dinner for 157 young Jews with the late Rabbi Chaskel Besser and the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation in Poland was born.

Part of the reconstructed Gwozdziec Synagogue.

The Polin Museum of the History of Polish Jews is designed to tell the whole thousand-year story of the Jews in Poland.

I REMEMBER WHEN I first started working at the Jewish Press 18 years ago, Arnie who was in charge of the newsroom, took me under his wing…

The official beginning of World War II was September 1, 1939. On that day German soldiers invaded Gdansk after bombarding the city with a military warship. As part of the Polish Government’s official series of events marking seven decades since the start of World War II, Poland’s Jewish community and the Jerusalem-based “Shavei Israel” organization held a special ceremony yesterday in the Gdansk synagogue to commemorate the outbreak of the war, which paved the way for the Holocaust.

The official beginning of World War II was September 1, 1939. On that day German soldiers invaded Gdansk after bombarding the city with a military warship. As part of the Polish Government’s official series of events marking seven decades since the start of World War II, Poland’s Jewish community and the Jerusalem-based “Shavei Israel” organization held a special ceremony yesterday in the Gdansk synagogue to commemorate the outbreak of the war, which paved the way for the Holocaust.

September 1, 1939 is the date on which Germany invaded Poland, starting WWII. While it should be said that the start of the war was not the start of the Shoah, which actually began with the rise of Nazism in 1933, it was a major milestone in the annals of the Holocaust. Within the first few days of the war, Germany had conquered and/or bombed much of Poland, including the capital, Warsaw.

September 1, 1939 is the date on which Germany invaded Poland, starting WWII. While it should be said that the start of the war was not the start of the Shoah, which actually began with the rise of Nazism in 1933, it was a major milestone in the annals of the Holocaust. Within the first few days of the war, Germany had conquered and/or bombed much of Poland, including the capital, Warsaw.

In September 1939 the Germans started establishing ghettos in the occupied territory of Poland. Ghettos played an important role in the Jewish extermination policy. They were filled with Polish and Western European Jewish deportees. The ghettos differed in times of existence, size, internal organization, and living conditions. The Germans called them ” death boxes” (Todeskiste). The city of Lodz belonged to the Wartheland District and the Germans changed its name into Litzmannstadt.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/radegast-station-of-lodz/2006/11/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: