Soviet Prisoners of War near Gžatsk, Soviet Union, November 1941, © Museum Berlin-Karlshorst / Photo: Albert Dieckmann
During the Second World War more than five million Soviet military members – men and women alike – were taken into German war captivity. More than three million died of hunger, diseases or have been killed. The mass murder of Soviet prisoners is one of the biggest war crimes in the Second World War. More than 75 years after the end of the war, many fates of former prisoners of war are still fully or partly not clarified.
This is where the current database project starts. So, if you are looking for information on Soviet prisoners of war (POWs), you have come to the right place. There are two options:
If you are a relative with an inquiry about the fate of a concrete person, please contact the German Federal Archive directly.
If you are working on a scholarly topic or need information for educational or commemorative purposes, you can in justified cases request access to the database. Please address your request to: email@example.com
Information about German POWs and internees is provided by the tracing service of the German Red Cross. Corresponding inquiries should only be directed there.
The current database project is part of the cooperation project “Sowjetische und deutsche Kriegsgefangene und Internierte“ [Soviet and German POWs and Internees] funded by the German Federal Government and the War Graves Commission as organising institution.
The Flossenbürg Concentration Camp Memorial is responsible for managing the information on this group of victims on behalf of the German Federal Archive. It processes the data in cooperation with the German Historical Institute Moscow. Within the project the institute also organises the research on the Soviet POWs in international as well as in German archives.
The documents and data from numerous international archives are processed and prepared for searching in the Flossenbürg Concentration Camp Memorial’s database “Memorial Archives”. As of 2023 it held documents and data of about 900,000 persons. The contents and holdings in the database are continuously extended. However, the data and documents already present are available to be used even now.