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A History of the Dora Camp: The Untold Story of the Nazi Slave Labor Camp That Secretly Manufactured V-2 Rockets Hardcover – May 27, 2003

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Ivan R. Dee (May 27, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 156663511X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1566635110
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 1.6 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #562,738 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Despite the plethora of books on the Holocaust, there remain little-known corners to be explored, and Sellier casts light on one of the darkest corners with this account of the Dora Camp, where V-2 rockets-Germany's supposed secret weapon-were produced. The story of this camp, with its underground factory, has been suppressed or ignored by the U.S. government, writes historian Michael Neufeld, because of "its inconvenient connection to an American hero: the rocket scientist Wernher von Braun," who was in charge of testing the rockets. Sellier, a French historian and a survivor of Camp Dora, relates how the factory was manned by slave laborers sent from Buchenwald; describes life in the underground tunnels, where the prisoners not only worked but lived without running water or proper sanitation; and tells of the camp's evacuation by death marches and other means with the approach of Allied forces in 1945. Sellier quotes directly from the chilling testimony of the camp's former inmates, who evoke Dante to convey the hellish nature of life there. This is an important addition to the history of the Holocaust, published in association with the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. Illus. Maps.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.


Recommended for larger public libraries and specilalized collections. (Library Journal)

Brilliant...remarkable. (Jens-Christian Wagner)

An event...will continue to be revered as a standard work on the topic. I highly recommend it to all readers. (Michael J. Neufeld)

The definitive and valuable study...a valuable contribution. (John Weiss)

A fresh view of a horrendous scene. (Raul Hilberg)

This edition contains and excellent illustrative essay and maps. (J.R. White CHOICE)

A full-bodied Holocaust story of the type. Sellier delivers and effective tale of yet another site in the Nazis' system of war-making through terrible exploitation. (Gerard Alexander The Virginia Quarterly Review)

...Complex, nuanced, and balanced.... Sellier’s book is an important addition to the scholarship on the Holocaust... (Michael Peterson, University of Maryland H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online)

This is an important contribution to the history of the Holocaust and belongs in every library... (Jewish Book World)

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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on September 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
In mid-1943 Nazi Germany faced a shortage of manpower in its factories, and sent slave laborers to work manufacturing weapons. The Dora subcamp was one of the most notorious, putting prisoners to work building V-2 rockets. Sellier himself is a former prisoner at Dora but also a historian and tells the story of the underground work sites. Source documents trace the horror of everyday life and the conflicts of prisoners forced to work against their potential liberators.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Stephen W Mohn on January 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Some four thousand mobile-launched V-2 ballistic missiles were produced for and fired by the German Army during the last year of WWII. Much has been written, some of it highly technical, about the remarkable engineering sophistication of this guided missile and how it served as the basis for all large rockets after the war ended. What is less known are the human details of how the missile was mass produced underground and the associated cost in terms of human lives. This well written and heavily researched book fills in that human detail. It presents a rather thorough description of how the Nazi concentration camp system operated to provide the majority of a labor force that ultimately produced the V-2 ballistic missile, albeit under deplorable physical conditions. The book notes that more loss of human life was expended to produce this weapon of war than the total number of human lives taken as a result of its operational use. The descriptive detail of the underground factory, quite apart from the production workers, is itself highly interesting. The book is a very good read for those with a strong interest in the historicity associated with the German Army V-2 that actually flew above the Earth's atmosphere on its way to its target.
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