In 1965, these barracks hosted an exhibition about the camp. Destroyed by arson in 1976, the building was rebuilt and became an exhibition space once again. The current exhibition sheds light on the history of the concentration camp of Natzweiler and of its subcamps. It highlights information and unique documents produced by research.


Roll call square

The roll call square was where the prisoners were counted, a process that could take several hours. On the ground, there is a memorial plaque paying tribute to the foreign prisoners who died at the camp of Natzweiler.



Completed in late October 1943, these barracks were designed to hold the mobile crematorium set up close to the Hotel Struthof (9) in February 1943. It had three well-established functions. First, it served as an admission block. The prisoners were forced to undress there, then they were searched and showered. Second, deceased prisoners, whose corpses were brought to the morgue in the basement, were burned in the crematorium, on the upper level, and their ashes were thrown down the hill into what is now called the Ash Pit (4). Finally, the crematorium block was also the site of pseudo-medical experiments.


Ash Pit

The ashes of incinerated prisoners were thrown into this space, originally a septic pit, down the hill from the crematorium block(3). On the Wall of Remembrance, memorial plaques have been placed over time, in a sign of tribute and reflection. On the ground, the words “Honneur et Patrie, Ossa Humiliata” (Honour and Country, Humbled Bones) are inscribed.


Lantern of the Dead

The Lantern of the Dead is always lit to pay tribute to the dead prisoners. In this place, the ashes of prisoners were used as fertilizer for the vegetable gardens of the SS.



The cell block was the prison of KL Natzweiler. It had 20 cells; 10 in each wing of the building. Imprisonment was one of the regulatory punishments in concentration camps. The conditions of detention, even stricter than in the rest of the camp, were strictly established.


House of the Kommandantur

This house, built in the early 20th century, served as a command headquarters and incidentally as a recreation area for the commanders of the camp.


Gas chamber

Built in 1912, this Rodelsaal  (sled room) was used as a ballroom and banquet hall. During the camp period, it was used as a place of imprisonment for the first prisoners (the first convoys arrived on 21 and 23 May 1941), then as a food storage room. In autumn 1942, the SS decided to convert one of the rooms into a gas chamber. Once it was operational, it was used to train the SS to wear gas masks. Experiments were also conducted on phosgene gas. 86 men and women were murdered there so a collection of Jewish skeletons could be compiled for the Reichsuniversität Straßburg.


Former hotel

The Hotel Struthof bears the name of the place where it is located. From 1941 to 1944, the restaurant and its annexes were requisitioned by the Nazis, who used the compound to house some of the troops assigned to the camp and for various workshops. In autumn 1942, the SS decided to set up a gas chamber (8) in the annex across from the hotel.



"Kartoffelkeller" means potato cellar in German. This reinforced concrete building, 120 metres long, has 22 compartments, with 2 long parallel corridors running between them. It was built by camp prisoners from 30 June 1943 until 1944. To date, no document or testimony has explained what it was used for or what the SS administrators of the camp planned to do with it


Exhibition space of the CERD

In the reception hall, 14 terminals describe the main Nazi concentration camps and extermination camps in Europe. Large images on glass remind visitors that the camp of Natzweiler was part of a vast, organised system, the Nazi concentration camp system. The touch terminals present the history of the camps, broken down by theme: the origins of the camp, the arrival, the prisoners’ days and labours, death, the number of victims, the trials, memory, etc. The objects bear witness to the fate of the prisoners in the camps.The forum located just above hosts temporary exhibitions.


National Memorial

The Memorial to the Heroes and Martyrs of the Deportation was officially inaugurated on 23 July 1960 by General Charles de Gaulle, who was the French president at the time. Standing 40 metres high, visible from the valley, it represents a flame and depicts the emaciated silhouette of a prisoner. The body of the unknown prisoner, symbolising all the victims of the deportation, was placed in the vault at the base of the Memorial, as well as 14 urns containing symbolic soil or anonymous ashes from concentration camps in Germany.


Permanent exhibition

“Engaging, Resisting, Fighting”
A film traces the history of the construction of the camp and sets the context for the visit.
On the lower level, the public discovers the “Kartoffelkeller” (potato cellar). This large reinforced-concrete building was built by the prisoners themselves between 1943 and 1944. During the exhibition, which is structured around the cellar, visitors can discover the impressive row of arches, as well as the thickness of the concrete walls.
Fourteen modules grouping together a very large collection of photographs present the rise of fascism and Nazism in Europe, the policies implemented by Hitler, and in parallel the resistance efforts that grew against oppression and began the fight for freedom. The end of the exhibition evokes the construction of Europe and new threats to world peace.



National Necropolis

The National Necropolis contains the tombs of 1,116 French people and foreigners who died after being deported.



Next to the road that runs alongside the National Necropolis (14) remain vestiges of the former sandpit.  Prisoners were subjected to forced labour in the sandpit. Many executions were carried out there. A memorial plaque pays tribute to those who lost their lives there: “In memory of the resistance members of all nationalities and of 17 young patriots from Ballersdorf and environs (in the Haut-Rhin department) executed here by the Nazis from 1941 to 1944”.



The site of the quarry was chosen by the geologist and engineer Karl Blumberg in the place known as Struthof, on the slopes of Mount Louise, not far from the village of Natzweiler, which is the German version of the French name, Natzwiller. This choice determined the establishment of the concentration camp one kilometre downstream from the quarry. The prisoners worked there through all types of weather and endured abuse by the guards. As the military situation of the Germans deteriorated (Anglo-American landing in North Africa in 1942, Soviet victory in Stalingrad in February 1943, etc.), the exploitation of the quarry slowed down, although it continued until 1944. The prisoners were then mainly forced to dismantle aircraft engines of the Junkers firm, to retrieve usable parts from them.