Yesterday with other European friends we visited Cracow we started our international trip in Kazimierz the Jewish Quarter in the city. Before WWII in Cracow had lived 70 000 Jews and almost all of them lost their lives in Concentration Camp in Poland.
History of ‘Schindler’s Factory’ in Krakow, Poland.
Oskar Schindler arrived to Krakow hot on the heels of the German invasion in September 1939. As a member of the Nazi party and an agent of the German military intelligence he managed to appropriate the factory which had been set up by a group of Jewish businessmen in 1937. Krakow’s two Jewish proprietors who became dependent on Schindler, Abraham Bankier and Samuel Wiener, provided him with necessary capital. The factory originally known under its Polish name as Fabryka Naczyn Emaliowanych i Wyrobow Blaszanych ‘Rekord’ was renamed Deutsche Emailwarenfabrik (DEF). Under Schindler’s control the plant at 4 Lipowa street continued to produce cookware and varied metal vessels, primarily for the German army. He accomplished ambitious plans of the rapid expansion of production facilities. Schindler also succeeded in launching a munitions division so his factory was able to contribute directly to the Third Reich’s war effort as supplier of cartridge cases and fuses for bombs and artillery shells. He reduced costs by replacing the original Polish staff with cheap labor from the Krakow Jewish ghetto the Nazis organized not far from Schindler’s factory. When Germans liquidated the ghetto in 1943 and moved the remaining Jews to the Plaszow concentration camp, Schindler opened its branch on the premises of his factory complete with barbed-wire fences and watchtowers.
'Tin-ware Sarcophagus' - erected opposite Schindler's desk in his spacious private office - is one of several monuments commemorating Jewish workers in the factory turned museum.
In the face of the Soviet Red Army's advances Schindler relocated, with the blessing of the German authorities, his munitions business and its workforce in the late 1944 to the branch of Gross-Rosen Concentration Camp in Bohemia’s Brunnlitz. About 1,200 Jewish prisoners from Krakow survived there to be liberated by the Soviets on May 8, 1945. In 1993 Steven Spielberg immortalized Schindler’s Factory in his movie ‘Schindler's List’.
From 1948 to 2002 the retooled plant at 4 Lipowa street manufactured parts for telecommunications equipment produced by Krakow’s company Telpod.
In June 2010 the Schindler Factory (Fabryka Schindlera) opened as a branch of the City of Krakow Historical Museum.
So now you can see photos which were taken in this Museum by me yesterday 2nd October 2014.
Enjoy the photos. They are very unique....
Entrance to the Schindler's Factory
|Photos of typical Cracow people during WWII|
Karol Wojtyla - later John Paul II. He lived during WWII in Cracow.
Typical gifts for children for Christmas in 1944
Our European Team Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Romania and Turkey.