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Effektenkammer Kanada I

The so called Effektenkammer Kanada I was a large sorting warehouse for the arranging and storage of stolen possessions from the incoming transports. The warehouse was around 10 minutes walking distance north from Auschwitz I and was in the heart of the Industriehof area. On its north perimeter was the boundary of the DAW slave labour factory and to its southern border, the Kohlenplatz, where the coal was stored to power the krematoriums in Auschwitz-Birkenau. The warehouse had access to the rail spur on its east perimeter presumably for ease of despatching the sorted belongings back in to Germany, although it is possible the spur at the Bahnhof West was also used too for the collection of goods from this warehouse. The site, at Oświęcim, 12 Kolbego St, was the location of a lesser known mass murder at Auschwitz. The SS killed 200 Jews from the Sonderkommando on 25 September 1944 after luring them in under the false pretences of food and water before being sent on to another camp to continue working. The victims have not been commemorated at this site.

The third largest site for storing possessions that was not part of the Industriehof area was the former pre-war Oświęcim Tannery building. The large warehouse was 20 minutes walking distance to the north east of Auschwitz I and was the place for storing human hair amongst other material items. The building was finally demolished at the turn of the 21st century and was highlighted in the news when an investor proposed turning the site into a discotheque. However, in 2016, the area was used for the storage of public toilets and an extension to the area that held the Life Festival concert featuring the likes of Queen and Elton John.

Map showing the location of the Effektenkammer Kanada 1
Map showing the location of
the Effektenkammer Kanada 1
Map designed by Michael Challoner ©
The gates at the former Effektenkammer Kanada 1 in Oświęcim, 12 Kolbego St.
The gates at the former Effektenkammer Kanada I in Oświęcim, 12 Kolbego St.
Photo by Michael Challoner ©


Information about sources we used while researching the industrial zones of Auschwitz you can find here.