When the prisoners left the camp in the mornings and evenings they were counted on the muster ground. There was also a weekly count on the muster ground and hangings frequently took place in view of the other prisoners. During the early 1970’s the muster ground was landscaped and a speakers platform and curved wall erected, with the dedication taking place in September 1974.
On the other side of the road from the tunnel complex is the former railway station. Parts of it can still be seen including a platform. Besides the various materials that were conveyed to and from the camp, prisoners were brought to the camp in cattle trucks. There is an example of the type of cattle truck used to convey the prisoners to the camp on display as a tribute to those who suffered. Because it is located a short distance away from the camp on the former railway station grounds it is missed by most visitors.
The main tunnels that went into the mountain were labelled A & B, these were nearly 2 kms in length and 7m in height, with numerous adjoining tunnels connecting the 2 main tunnels. The tunnels were large enough to take trains on 2 lines, which took away the rockets. A & B tunnels were later sealed by the Russian after the camp was handed over after WW2. In 1995 a new entrance was dug up that allows access for visitors into tunnel A. A small part of the tunnel complex is open to the public and you must go on a tour with a guide.
One of only 2 buildings that has survived ravages of time, is the brick built crematorium that was built in 1944. In 1964 the building was altered and was turned into a museum in 1966. Since that date the building has again been altered and various memorials and plaques have been added. A sculpture by Jurgen von Woyski, dating from 1964 stands outside the building.
The first place to visit at the camp is the brand new museum and visitors’ centre. This is a well laid out museum that gives a history of the camp with translations available from the help desk. There are a number of short films available to watch by former prisoners. I watched one by a wonderful man from the Czech Republic who told his story, without bitterness to his former capturers, of how he had worked out how best to survive the camps regime. You can ask the staff on the desk to put on a film in the required language that gives a history of the camp. I had the cinema to myself on the day I visited. The staff can arrange a tour of the tunnels and the times vary between weekdays and the weekend. Upstairs there is a restaurant and toilets.
None of the prisoners’ barracks have survived. They were used for short time, as accommodation after the war and then destroyed. A barracks from a Nordhausen sub-camp was brought to the camp in 1991. Since 1995 the building has been used as a small museum. An explanation of the exhibits are in German but you can ask the staff for guide in the required language.