Give the victims back their names: The Memorial Place at the Cemetery on Hochstrasse
In May 2001, the municipal administration of Braunschweig, jointly with the Polish “Council for the Commemoration of Struggle and Martyrdom”, inaugurated the newly designed Memorial Place located on Hochstrasse. This place of mourning and commemoration, created by Solyga, a Polish-German group of artists, recalls the sufferings of men and women from Poland, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Hungary, Germany, Bulgaria, France, the Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia who died in Braunschweig during the Nazi era.
Between 1942 and 1944, more than 380 prisoners of war and men and women forced into slave labour were buried on this cemetery - having died either of the sequels of inhumane working and living conditions or in bombing raids, against which they had no protection. Also, more than 150 children lie buried on this cemetery. Only during the past few years has the history of their sufferings and deaths been uncovered. Polish and Soviet women, forced into slave labour, delivered their babies at a so-called maternity home existing from 1943 to 1945 at Broitzemer Strasse 200. The mothers had to abandon their babies shortly after they were born, leaving them exposed to neglect and hunger. Most of them died within a few weeks and were then buried, without their mothers present, on the Hochstrasse cemetery.
The place has long remained veiled in silence. But now, finally, the victims’ names are told. A commemorative plaque fixed at the entrance to the cemetery tells the history of the place.