Kasztner Train Rescue Mission: Reaching Switzerland (August-December 1944)

Figure 1.--Here the first group Kasztner Jewish deportees are in SWitzerland (August 1944). They are in the baggage cars used to transport them from Bergon-Belsen to the Swiss border. The cars would have been closed and very hot when moving through the Reich. Here they havebeen opened. .

The Kasztner rescue Jews were eventually allowed to proceed to Switzerland, but in two groups. As far as we know, this was the kargest group of Jews that Swiss authoruties permitted to enter the country. The first smaller group (about 300 Jews) left for Switzerland (August). The weather was apparently vert warm. A photograph shows the children sitting in an open train car. This was apparently after reaching the Swiss border. We don't believe that the Germans would have allowed them to travel through the Reich in open cars. By this most other Hungarian Jews had been killed in the gas chambers at Auchwitz-Birenau. They arrived at the Swiss border in sealed baggage cars. Ir was a long trip, Bergon-Belsen was located in Lower Saxony (northwestern Germany). Once safe in Switzerland they were taken by bus to their billets. The second group of the Kasztner transport that had been held in Bergon-Belson (1,368 Jews) crossed the Swiss frontier (December7). Durung thei odessy in the Reich, there were several of births and deaths. The Germans detained 17 individuals in Bergen-Belsen on a variety of pretexts. The total number saved was about 1,670 people.


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Created: 6:03 PM 10/25/2012
Last updated: 6:03 PM 10/25/2012