Transportation lists of the transports which left from Mechelen/Malines during the holocaust

Update (15 March 2016): I have come across a list on the website of the German ´Das Bundesarchiv´´s Memorial Book (see: www.bundesarchiv.de/gedenkbuch/chronicles.html.en?page=2).  I have merged their information (mainly the number of deported persons) with the information I have had before (on the website of ´Das Bundesarchiv´, you´ll find similar lists for The Netherlands and France).

I recently asked for a list of all transports which left the Mechelen/Malines kazerne (barracks) (Mechelen is the Dutch variant and Malines is the French variant of the name of the Flemish city which is about 25 kilometers south from Antwerp) during holocaust.

I wanted the overview so that I could place the names I received on some lists in the right context.

As I assume that there might be more out there with an interest in the list, I am publishing it here.

One transport to note is transport XX. Transport XX was attacked between Boortmeerbeek and Haacht (which is about 15km from Mechelen) by brave Belgians and thanks to these Belgians (Jean Franklemon, Georges Livschitz and Robert Maistriau) 231 deportees out of 1631 succeeded to escape the train. Out of the 231 escapees, 26 people died during the action which happened on 19 april 1943. You can read more about this episode on the following website: http://users.telenet.be/holocaust.bmb/.

Please note that you can find more about the list and transports in the following publications:

For more about the museum visit their website at http://www.kazernedossin.be where you can read the following introduction:

Of these 25,835 people, 576 escaped during the journey. 24,019 of the remainder would die: they were either gassed in Birkenau or died in the slave labour camp of Auschwitz or during the subsequent death march. Just 1,240 deportees – or less than 5% – returned to Belgium in May 1945. 32 Gypsies were among the survivors.
When war broke out, the Jewish population represented approximately 1% of the Belgian population. At the end of the war in 1945, 50% of all civilian casualties were Jewish.
The transportation of over 25,000 Jews and Gypsies was a German crime, carried out by the Nazis. However, their plan could not succeed without the cooperation of:

  • the Belgian civil service that, as a whole, principally accepted the persecution of the Jews and within the framework of the law, cooperated with the occupier
  • Belgian collaborating paramilitary parties and organisations who would present themselves as Jew hunters

This cooperation strongly contributed to the end result: a death toll of 44% of Jews. With this, the figures of the ‘Final Solution’ in Belgium lie between those of France (25%) and the Netherlands (80%).

Here is the list with the transportations:

Transport

Number of Deported Persons

(based on the information found n the aforementioned ´Das Bundesarchiv´´s Memorial Book

Departure date Arrival in Auschwitz(except for these mentioned with another destination)
I 998 04/08/1942 05 or06/08/1942
II 999 11/08/1942 13/08/1942
III 1000 15/08/1942 17/08/1942
IV 998 18/08/1942 20/08/1942
V 995 25/08/1942 27/08/1942
VI 1000 29/08/1942 31/08/1942
VII 1000 01/09/1942 03/09/1942
VIII 1000 08/09/1942 10/09/1942
IX 1000
(About 250 persons had to leave the transport already in Cosel)
12/09/1942 14/09/1942
X 1048 15/09/1942 17/09/1942
XI 1742 26/09/1942 28/09/1942
XII 1674 10/10/1942 12/10/1942
XIII 1679 10/10/1942 12/10/1942
XIV 995 24/10/1942 26/10/1942
XV 476 24/10/1942 26/10/1942
XVI 1696 31/10/1942 03/11/1942
XVII 1937 31/10/1942 03/11/1942
XVIII 1555 15/01/1943 18/01/1943
XIX 1632 15/01/1943 18/01/1943
XX 1400 19/04/1943 22/04/1943
XXs 1631 19/04/1943 22/04/1943
XXI 1553 31/07/1943 02/08/1943
XXIs 1563 31/07/1943 02/08/1943
XXIIA 1425 20/09/1943 22/09/1943
XXIIB 1433 20/09/1943 22/09/1943
XXIIs 20/09/1943 22/09/1943
XXIII 657 15/01/1944 17/01/1944
XXIIIs 15/01/1944 17/01/1944
XXIV 625 04/04/1944 07/04/1944
XXIVs 04/04/1944 07/04/1944
XXV 14 19/05/1944 21/05/1944
XXVs 507 19/05/1944 21/05/1944
XXVI 563 31/07/1944 02/08/1944
XXVIs 31/07/1944 02/08/1944
Z 15/01/1944 17/01/1944
Z -> Buchenwald 13/12/1943 15/12/1943
Z -> Ravensbrück 13/12/1943 15/12/1943
Z -> Bergen-Belsen 19/04/1944 19/04/1944
E -> Vittel 23/02/1944 23/02/1944
E 2 -> Vittel 43 20/06/1944 20/06/1944

19 thoughts on “Transportation lists of the transports which left from Mechelen/Malines during the holocaust”

  1. my wifes grandfather jacob was on the xxi/31 transport from malines to auschwitz, he was killed there in 1943. his name appeared in serge klarsfelds book the memorial of the deportation of the belguim jews. we would like some more information on this.

  2. my grandfather, Ekstein Alfred (792), was on the convoy 16 from Camiers (Atlantic wall) to Mechelen and then to Auchwitz. He never arrived in Auchwitz as he was not registered there. Can you tell if there is a list of the convoy 16 only? Who succeeded to escape? What was the trajectory of the trains to Auchwitz ? Thank you

    1. Hello,

      Thank you for your comment.
      According to the Kazerne Dossin (Memorial, Museum and Documentation Centre on Holocaust and Human rights – see their website at http://www.kazernedossin.be) your grandfather was indeed deported on 31 October 1942 with transport XVI from the North of France. The train stopped in Mechelen/Malines before continuing to Auschwitz.
      Since there is no evidence of his escape, we may assume that he effectively arrived on November 3, 1942. Nor has the museum a tattoo number or death certificate from your grandfather.
      This may indeed imply that he was sent immediately to the gas chambers, but it could also be that these documents existed and were destroyed during the evacuation of the camp by the Nazis in 1945 (which has happened a lot of documents).
      Both possibilities remain open. There is thus no clear answer about his fate apart that he most likely was killed.

      Gershon

      PS: You may be interested in the following artciles on my website for more about the “Organisation Todt” (OT) and the 16th transport:

      PSS: You may as well try to contact Mrs. Dorien Styven or Mrs. Laurence Schram from the Kazerne Dossin for more details they may have about your grandfather.

  3. my father was at dannes-camiers and ultimately deported. i visited dannes and was shown and read a collection of hand written looseleafs of details of the camps and the personal stories of the reseach of the history of the consripted workers at he camps. they are in french but should be saved.

  4. This interesting lady, Mala Zimetbaum, was on Transport X, the same transport as my grandfather: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mala_Zimetbaum

    Does Kazerne Dossin know anything about the fate and survival rate of those who were transported from Mechelen? Mala Zimetbaum has managed to stay alive for two years in Auschwitz, which is quite a long time. Perhaps she was so “lucky” due to her young age and because of her knowledge of several languages.

    I am planning to write Kazerne Dossin soon, so I will ask them this question as well.

  5. Hello – My great uncle, Kurt Weisner, was one apparently of the recaptured escapees from transport XX. He is then also listed on transport XXI, where the trail goes cold. I understand there were also escapes from that transport. Is there any record of those escapees? Also, what does the “s” mean after the transport numbers beginning with transport XX. Is it true that recaptured escapees were designated as “Special Prisoners” to be executed immediately upon arrival at Auschwitz? I appreciate any information you may have to share. Thank you so much for doing this!!!

    1. Hi,

      I have checked on your behalf:
      A person can indeed appear on multiple lists. Sometimes there were two people with the same name, in which case the birth place and date would usually rule out such a possibility. In other cases, when the name appears twice for the same person, it is that these persons were indeed escaped prisoners who were, unfortunately, arrested again.

      The s behind some transport numbers stands for “special” wagon, and not train which were, starting from transport no. XX, attached behind the queue of the ‘regular’ wagons. The wagon indeed contained the previously escaped prisoners, but the system was not foolproof. Not every previously escaped prisoner was put in that car, think of the earlier transports I tem XIX. The earlier escapees were indeed kept separately in the Dossin barracks, but they certainly were not automatically sent to the gas chambers upon arrival at Auschwitz-Birkenau. There are several people who were deported in an s-wagon, but were tattooed (and not immediate gassed) in Auschwitz-Birkenau or who fortunate even survived (about fifteen) and returned to Belgium in 1945.

      If you want more infromation about your great uncle, I recommecnd that you check with the Holocaust Museum of Belgium (Kazerne Dossin) via https://www.kazernedossin.eu/EN/Archief-Onderzoek/Archief-en-documentatiecentrum/Contact

      Good luck

  6. We are two Italian researchers, and we have the case of a Jewish lady Gusta Sternschein of Michael and Mary Rossenstoch, born in 1892 at Jurkoutz. We would like to know if Juda Sternschein (file 6390) had the same paternity because in that case could be her brother: also he was born in Jurkoutz. In ’39 she was expelled from Italy and sent to Britain. So it seems, but we don’t have security.Do you have information on the case of Juda? When was he deported? Thank You. Lidia Maggioli and Antonio Mazzoni.

    1. Dear Lidia and Antonio,

      I am still trying to find out more about Juda Sternschein.
      What I know already is that he was deported on August 28th, 1942 with transport 25 via transit camp Drancy in France (many Belgians were deported via Drancy).

      I will send you an e-mail an elaborate in it.

      Gershon

        1. Hello,

          I am still waiting for more details. I have not heard back since I have contacted them.
          It usually takes a while.

          Gershon

  7. Mr. Lehrer, Three of my relatives were deported from Belgium to Auschwitz-Bireneau in 1942 – two (a wife and daughter) on Transport XI on September 26, 1942, and one (a husband who had also been an OT slave laborer in No. France ) on Transport XVI on October 31, 1942. I have obtained their “Foreigner’s File” from the Belgium State Archives, and there are records in the file from a Belgium Court in 1958 officially declaring each of them to have died at Auschwitz between the time of their arrivals there and June 1945. Do you happen to know why in 1958 (thirteen years after the War ended) a Belgium Court would have taken up the issue of certifying their deaths?
    Thank you for any information you can shed on this.
    Regards, Philip

    1. Dear Mr. Ross,

      Since most victims could not be declared as having died on the basis of firsthand information and testimonies, their deaths were officially declared by the authorities with a delay. The reason had, among others, also to do with the financial restitution in those years.

      Gershon

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