|Ages 11 and Above|
Yes... Mauthausen Concentration Camp was first constructed in the summer of 1940. It's main purpose was to provide slave labor for the stone quarry, mines, and a variety of factories in the area having mostly to do with munitions and other weapons.
Inmates were exterminated through labor (worked to death). Death tolls estimate that between 100,000 and 300,000 inmates died in the camp. Most inmates were well educated people and so called 'political prisoners'.
One of the most horrific stories is of prisoners made to carry a 100 lb stone block up 186 stairs to the top of the quarry in a race. This continued until one prisoner died of exhaustion. The survivor prisoners were directed to form a line at the top of the stairs one behind the other next to the cliff's edge. The guard walked up to the person just behind the person at the edge of the cliff and gave the order to the prisoner to push the person in front of them over the cliff or be shot.
This is just one example of the horrors of Mauthausen.