Ghettos were set up to segregate Jews from the rest of the population. The ghettos were seen as a provisional measure that was taken to control and segregate the Jews while Nazis planned a way to exterminate and emove all of the Jewish race.
Jewish Ghettos with Nazi supervision
These ghettos were mostly temporary , but varied in time that they lasted; a few days, a week, or some even lasted several years.
The Jews were forced to wear identification badges or armbands at all times. There were Nazi-appointed Jewish citizens that were put in charge to administer the Ghetto life, and make sure every Jew was wearing one of these badges.
After the Jews had lived in the ghettos for a period of time, the Germans decided to systematically destroy the population that lived there. They did this in multiple different ways, including shooting them down and deporting them to ¨killing centers," otherwise known as concentration camps.
Mass shooting in the ghetto
Some of the Jews tried to revolt about their living conditions, but they were in such poor health that it was hard for them to strike back.
Types of Ghettos:
Closed- walls and fences with barbed wire, they were and unsanitary. Starvation, chronic shortages, severe winter weather and unheated houses lead to epidemic outbreaks and high mortality rate. Closed ghettos were the most popular of the ghettos. They were located in Poland and the Soviet Union.
Open- no walls or fences but there were many restrictions on leaving due to safety concerns to the Jewish person and the person protecting them. They were located in Poland and Soviet Union as well as Transnistria, the province in Ukraine and administrated by Roman authorities.
Destruction- tightly sealed off and existed for only a short period of 2-6 weeks before the Germans deported or killed the Jews. They were located in Soviet Union, Lithuania, Ukraine, and Hungary.
The Warsaw ghetto was the largest in Poland. It held about 400,000 Jews in 1.3 square miles. On average there was 7 Jews that lived in one room of a home. All of the Jews were made to wear a white armband with a blue Star of David. Many Jews came together inside the ghetto to create organizations that would meet their needs and try to keep them alive. Like most ghettos it was enclosed by a 10ft high wall, topped with wire, and was closely guarded.
Warsaw City Background
Warsaw Before German Invasion
Warsaw is currently the capital of Poland. The city had the largest Jewish population in Poland and Europe up until the the Holocaust began. Warsaw suffered greatly after the invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939 and continued to decline.
The warsaw uprising began on April 19, 1943 and ended May 16, 1943. The uprising was caused because of the deportations of Jews within the ghetto that had been going on. The Jews created a self defense unit, hiding places, and bunkers for when they would attack. They had very few weapons and were not successful but it was the largest and most symbolic uprising that inspired others in different ghettos and camps.