The Satellite Camp Bullenhuser Damm

Various satellite camps of the Neuengamme concentration camp were set up directly in Hamburg in order to provide companies with workers at low cost. Concentration camp prisoners were also used to clear away rubble, salvage corpses and clear bombs in parts of the city that had been destroyed by air raids. One of these satellite camps was set up in a former school on Bullenhuser Damm.

Black and white photo of the Bullenhuser Damm school building in 1990.
The school building on Bullenhuser Damm, 1990 (ANg)

At the end of July 1943, Rothenburgsort was largely destroyed in a bomb attack by the British and US Air Forces. Lessons were no longer held in the preserved school building. From August 1944, various Hamburg authorities negotiated the establishment of a satellite camp of the Neuengamme concentration camp in the empty building on Bullenhuser Damm. 1,000 concentration camp prisoners were to work in Rothenburgsort for the SS-owned company Deutsche Erd- und Steinwerke GmbH (DESt). In the fall of 1944, the city of Hamburg handed over the building to the SS. By the end of November 1944, the former school had been converted into a satellite camp. The windows of the building were barred and the school and schoolyard were fenced off with barbed wire. 

The first prisoners, most of whom came from Poland and the Soviet Union, arrived in December 1944. They were initially forced to clean-up rubble and to process bricks from the destroyed buildings. In the report of the site doctor, Dr. Alfred Trzebinski, on March 29, 1945, there were 592 concentration camp prisoners in the satellite camp. At times, more than 200 Danish prisoners were housed at Bullenhuser Damm, who the Danish and Swedish Red Cross were able to evacuate to Denmark in April 1945 after negotiations with the SS. In April 1945, the SS cleared the satellite camp and transported the prisoners to so-called "reception camps" such as the Sandbostel POW camp.

Media Library

The complete permanent exhibition "Time Traces" and the other side exhibitions on the grounds of the Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial are also available digitally in the memorial's media library. Unfortunately, the media library is only available in German.

media library
Contact us at

E-mail: lernwerkstatt@gedenkstaetten.hamburg.de

Phone: +49 40 428 131 551