The shocking frame of a former prisoner makes it difficult to take in the power of this moment. But here, you can see US Army soldiers speaking to survivors of the Buchenwald concentration camp. In the lead up to the American troops arriving, thousands of prisoners were sent on evacuation marches to other camps — but two prisoners were able to send a secret message to American troops through a hidden short-wave transmitter, pleading for help.

While the Third United States Army were able to respond to the prisoners, a number of communist inmates took matters into their own hands, storming the watchtowers and killing the guards. On 11 April 1945, a detachment of troop arrived at Buchenwald — and they sent elements of the 80th Infantry Division to take control of the camp the next day.


 Buchenwald concentration camp, near Weimar, Thuringia, Germany. April 1945.   

Credit: Anti Worlds