In mid-September 1944, around 500 Jewish women – mostly from Lithuania, but also from Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary – arrived at the women’s satellite camp in Hamburg-Langenhorn (Ochsenzoll) from Stutthof concentration camp, where they had been selected to work in Hamburg a few days earlier. The women, many of whom were very young, were housed in Langenhorn in two newly constructed huts directly adjacent to the “Ostarbeiterlager Tannenkoppel” (Tannenkoppel Eastern workers’ camp) on Karree Weg (now Essener Strasse).
Another 250 women arrived at the camp in early March 1945. These were prisoners who had been branded “criminals” by the SS or who were Sinti or Roma – so-called “Gipsies” – from Ravensbrück concentration camp.
The women were deployed to the Hanseatische Kettenwerke armaments factory in Hamburg-Langenhorn and to a branch of Messap (Deutsche Messapparate GmbH) on Schanzenstraße. In the final weeks of the war, some of them were forced to carry out excavation work for the construction of prefabricated buildings for the Hamburg city council.
The SS evacuated the camp on 3 or 4 April 1945. Most of the women were moved to the “reception camp” at Bergen-Belsen, while the others were taken to the Sasel satellite camp in Hamburg.
Two weeks later, on 20 April 1945, as the Neuengamme satellite camps were being evacuated, female prisoners from the Helmstedt-Beendorf satellite camp arrived at the Langendorf camp in an exhausted state. Three deaths were recorded in the register of deaths in Langenhorn on 26/27 April and another six on 3/4 May. On 3 May, the surviving women were taken to the Hamburg-Eidelstedt satellite camp, where they were liberated by the British army shortly afterwards.
The commander of the Langenhorn satellite camp for women was Walter Lau, an SS officer from East Prussia.
a) 12 September 1944 to 3 or 4 April 1945 b) around 20 April to 3 May 1945
750 Female Prisoners
a) Armaments production b) Construction of makeshift housing
a) Hanseatische Kettenwerke, Messap b) Hamburg City Council
Essener Straße 54, 22419 Hamburg, Germany (take the underground [U-Bahn] to the “Ochsenzoll” stop).
On 1 September 1988, a memorial stone was placed to commemorate the suffering of the prisoners in the Hamburg-Langenhorn satellite camp, which was located on what is now Essener Straße. A plaque marking the location of the former satellite camp was also placed next to the memorial stone in 1988 by the Hamburg Cultural Authority as part of its "Sites of Persecution and Resistance 1933-1945" programme (Stätten der Verfolgung und des Widerstandes 1933–1945).
Encouraged by the Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial, a private initiative researched the history of the satellite camp, which led to the establishment of this memorial. A total of eight initiatives and organisations as well as the Hamburg Cultural Authority were involved in the establishment of the memorial site. Today the site is privately maintained.
On 21 February 2008, a memorial column dedicated to the 6,000 male and female slave labourers forced to work at the Hanseatische Kettenwerke was unveiled at the site of the former armaments factory in Langenhorn.