Concentration Camp Le Vernet

The camp Le Vernet (or Camp Vernet) served several functions between June 1918 and 1948:

June 1918:
Establishment of the camp to house French colonial troops during World War I. Short after the opening of the camp, it became a camp for German and Austrian POW's.
During the interbellum:
Military depot.
Reception camp for refugees Spanish civil war.
Internment camp for nationalists and 'undesirable' foreigners.
From 1940 to 1944, under the command of Vichy-France:
Internment Camp for political enemies and 'undesirable' foreigners.
1942 to June 1944:
Concentration- and transit camp for Jews.
15 June 1944 to 1948:
POW-camp of the Deutsche Wehrmacht.

The living conditions in camp Le Vernet were bad, especially in the winters. By 1944, 40,000 people were interned in the camp. In the same month of 1944, the last Jews were deported to concentration camp Dachau. In 1948 the last German POW's were released from the camp.

Nowadays, there is not much left of camp Le Vernet. Only the train station remained intact. On the track at the train station stands a cattle car (with a plaque inside) commemorating the perished Jews. It also is possible to visit the camp cemetery at north of the camp. In the nearby village of Le Vernet is a museum about the camp.

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Related books

The Camp Men
Encyclopedia of the Third Reich
Hitlers gewillige beulen
Leven met de dood
The Third Reich