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Portraits of Auschwitz: Dr Ludwik Fleck

On 7th February 1943 a very special transport arrived to Auschwitz. It came from the Weigl Institute in Lviv. People of that transport were put in Block 20 (the Prisoners' Hospital) in the main camp alongside their wives and children. They were assigned to work for the Hygiene Institute in Rajsko.

Dr Ludwick Fleck

The transport included the following doctors and their families: dr Ludwik Fleck, dr Jakób Seeman, dr Bernard Umschweif and dr Owsiej Abramowicz. They were treated better than other Jewish prisoners due to their achievements in the medicine. Auschwitz Study Group found out in the Archives at the beginning of February 2017 that both sons of dr Umschweif were treated in the hospital in Rajsko when they suffered from typhus. The hospital there was considered one of the best in the whole Auschwitz complex.

In the picture you can see Doctor Ludwik Fleck (11th July 1896 - 5th June 1961) who was a physician and biologist doing important work in epidemic typhus in Lviv with Rudolf Weigl and in the 1930's developed the concepts of the Denkstil ('thought style') and the Denkkollektiv ('thought collective'). His main task in Auschwitz was to diagnose syphilis, typhus and other illnesses using serological tests.

The picture is the courtesy of the National Archives.

You can read more about Raisko in the Sub-Camps section.