This cattle car was imported to the United States by the American Heritage Museum from Nuremberg, Germany in the summer of 2023 and has undergone a complete restoration. This is one of over 120,000 similar “Type G-10” cars built between 1910 and 1927 for the German National Railway. The 30-foot long, two-axle freight wagon is the type used by the Nazi regime for the inhumane transportation of millions of innocent Jewish people and other persecuted groups to concentration camps and extermination sites across Europe from 1933 to 1945. While no rail car can be directly traced to this terrible use as records were not kept of this type, the sheer numbers of victims transported during the Holocaust points to the likelihood that every car would have been used in this way at some point during its history.
The Holocaust represents one of the darkest chapters in human history, characterized by the brutal extermination of millions of innocent lives. It is crucial to remember and understand this horrific event so to prevent its repetition. Historical artifacts play a vital role in education people about the Holocaust, and among them, this Deutsche Reichsbahn rail car holds profound significance in offering insights into this tragic period. By preserving this artifact and examining the rail car’s historical importance, we can gain a deeper understanding of this Holocaust, its origins, and its lasting impact on humanity.
During WWII, Nazi Germany’s national railway system, the Deutsche Reichsbahn, played a critical role in orchestrating the Holocaust. What was once a mere utilitarian means of transportation became a haunting symbol of suffering. Transformed into vessels of misery, these rail cars carried millions of victims to horrible destinations from which most would never return. A logistical transportation infrastructure that enabled the state-sponsored persecution, mass deportation, and murder of millions by Nazi Germany.