ORIGINAL 100 GRAM SIZED…. ZYKLON B CANISTERS FROM THE NAZI HOLOCAUST ERA USED AT GRAFENECK EUTHANASIA CENTRE HOUSED AT GRAFENECK CASTLE , GERMANY NOW ON DISPLAY AT THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION , LITTLEDEAN JAIL .

POLITE WARNING …  THE CRIME THROUGH TIME COLLECTION AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL (WHERE UPON THIS EXHIBITION IS HOUSED )  IS NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN OR THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE EASILY OFFENDED , DISTURBED OR OF A SENSITIVE NATURE

THE CONTENT HERE ON DISPLAY BOTH ONLINE AND WITHIN THE JAIL IS IN THE MAIN HARD HITTING , GRAPHIC, EXPLICIT , IN YOUR FACE , TONGUE IN CHEEK , CONTROVERSIAL AND TO MANY … VERY DISTURBING

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 Used original Zyklon B 100gram sized canisters from one of the first Nazi gas chambers situated at Grafeneck Euthanasia Center, housed in Grafeneck Castle, Germany . It had officially opened in January 1940 and was closed on the orders of Nazi warlord Himmler in December 1940 . This facility was mainly used to exterminate mentally Handicapped and retarded victims as part of the Nazi euthanasia program. These canisters are exceptionally rare find from what was one of the earliest gas chambers and crematorium facilities . There is evidence that exists to the effect that a minimum 10, 654 were gassed there, though inevitably many more victims were murdered there before its closure . these canisters are now on public display at the Crime Through Time Collection, Littledean Jail

Grafeneck Gas chamber

GRAFENECK GAS CHAMBER AT GRAFENECK CASTLE

Grafeneck Castle

The former medieval castle Grafeneck was built on a hill near Marbach.
On 24 May 1939, members of Aktion T4 visited the buildings in order to find out if it could be used for their killing programme. On 14 OctoberGrafeneck Castle was duly confiscated. Between 10 and 15 manual labourers from nearby villages started to convert the castle into a killing centre.

300 m away from the castle several barracks were built, fenced in with a hoarding up to 4 m high. On the first floor of the castle the following facilities were installed: accomodations and offices for the doctors, a registry office, a police office, the office for the comfort letters and others. On the second floor, small living- and sleeping rooms for the personnel were installed. The main building of the killing facility was a barrack (68 m long and 7 m wide), which included several rooms. In one of them 100 beds were placed, covered with straw-bags. Three big buses for transportation of the victims and an ambulance car stood in a wooden garage. Two mobile cremation ovens were located in another wooden barrack. Because of the immense heat, generated by the round-the-clock cremation, the roof of the barrack was removed and after a short time the surrounding trees even blackened. The gas chamber, resembling a shower bath, could hold 75 persons.
A former horse stable (round, and 15 m in diameter) probably served as storage room for the corpses. At the bottom of the hill, at the access road, a high hoarding and a guardhouse were built. Fences with barbed wire surrounded the whole castle whilst armed guards with dogs patrolled these perimeters.

Grafeneck Map.
Map

In mid-November 1939, SS men, typists and other personnel arrived and were supplemented during early January 1940 by approximately 25 nurses, some being male. In mid-January the cremation ovens were delivered. On 18 January 1940 the first transport of 25 handicapped men arrived fromEglfing-Haar near Munich, managed by the Grafeneck chief Dr Horst Schumann. He joined T4 since early October 1939, after a meeting with Viktor Brack in Hitler‘s chancellery. In early summer of 1940 he was ordered to the Sonnenstein euthanasia centre. Successors in Grafeneck: Dr Ernst Baumhardt and finally Dr Günther Hennecke.
Chief of administration became Christian Wirth, a detective superintendent and SS-Obersturmführer. He supervised the first gassings. Later he became inspector of all Aktion Reinhard extermination camps.

The killing continued until 13 December 1940. Then Grafeneck was no longer part of the euthanasia programme because, according to the plan, all handicapped persons from the Grafeneck operational area had been killed. Some of the personnel went on holiday while some were ordered to theHadamar euthanasia centre. A few remained at the castle to cover up all tracks of the actions that happened there.
10,824 victims were gassed and cremated at this facility.

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WHAT IS ZYKLON B?

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Zyklon B (German pronunciation: [tsykloːn ˈbeː]; also spelled Cyclon B or Cyclone B) was the trade name of a cyanide-based pesticideinvented in the early 1920s, and manufactured by German chemical conglomerate IG Farben. Zyklon B consisted of hydrogen cyanide(prussic acid), a stabilizer, a warning odorant (ethyl bromoacetate), and one of several adsorbents. Zyklon A was a previously produced liquid pesticide, which released hydrogen cyanide in a chemical reaction with water. After the invention of Zyklon B, Zyklon A production ceased.

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The product is infamous for its use by Nazi Germany to murder an estimated 1.2 million people, including approximately 960,000 Jews, ingas chambers installed in several extermination camps during the Holocaust. One of the co-inventors of Zyklon B, chemist and businessman Bruno Tesch, was executed by the British in 1946 for his role in this operation.

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The containers above hold Zyklon-B pellets (hydrocyanic acid) that vaporize when exposed to air. Originally intended for commercial use as a disinfectant and an insecticide, the Nazis discovered through experimentation the gas could be used to kill humans.

The brand of Zyklon-B used by the Nazis contained substances which gave the pellets a blue appearance and left blue stains inside gas chambers which can still be seen today in chambers that were left intact.

During the killing process, prisoners at Auschwitz and other killing centers were forced into the air-tight chambers that had been disguised by the Nazis to look like shower rooms. The Zyklon pellets were then dumped into the chambers via special air shafts or openings in the ceiling.

The pellets would then vaporize, giving off a noticeable bitter almond odor. Upon being breathed in, the vapors combined with red blood cells, depriving the human body of vital oxygen, causing unconsciousness, and then death through oxygen starvation.

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LAST PUBLIC EXECUTION BY GUILLOTINE, FRANCE – EUGENE WEIDMANN – JUNE 17 , 1939

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Eugen Weidmann (February 5, 1908 – June 17, 1939) was the last person to be publicly executed in France. Executions by guillotine in France continued in private until September 10, 1977, when Hamida Djandoubi was the last person to be executed.

Early life

Weidmann was born in Frankfurt am Main in Germany to the family of an export businessman, and went to school there. He was sent to live with his grandparents at the outbreak of World War I; during this time he started stealing. Later in his 20s he served five years in Saarbrücken jail for robbery.

During his time in jail Weidmann met two men who would later become his partners in crime: Roger Million and Jean Blanc. After their release from jail, they decided to work together to kidnap rich tourists visiting France and steal their money. They rented a villa in Saint-Cloud, near Paris, for this purpose.

Kidnapping

Their first kidnap attempt ended in failure because their victim struggled too hard, forcing them to let him go. In July 1937, they made a second attempt, Weidmann having made the acquaintance of Jean De Koven, a 22-year-old New York dancer visiting her aunt Ida Sackheim in Paris. Impressed by the tall, handsome German, De Koven wrote to a friend: “I have just met a charming German of keen intelligence who calls himself Siegfried. Perhaps I am going to another Wagnerian role – who knows? I am going to visit him tomorrow at his villa in a beautiful place near a famous mansion that Napoleon gave Josephine.” During their meeting they smoked and “Siegfried” gave her a glass of milk. She took photos of him with her new camera (later found beside her body, the developed snapshots showing her killer). Weidmann then strangled and buried her in the villa’s garden. She had 300 francs in cash and $430 in traveller’s cheques, which the group sent Million’s mistress, Collette Tricot, to cash. Sackheim received a letter demanding $500 for the return of her niece. De Koven’s brother Henry later came to France offering a 10,000 franc reward from his father Abraham for information about the young woman.

On September 1 of the same year, Weidmann hired a chauffeur named Joseph Couffy to drive him to the French Riviera where, in a forest outside Tours he shot him in the nape of the neck and stole his car and 2500 francs. The next murder came on September 3, after Weidmann and Million lured Janine Keller, a private nurse, into a cave in the forest of Fontainebleau with a job offer. There he killed her, again with a bullet to the nape of the neck, before robbing her of 1400 francs and her diamond ring. On October 16, Million and Weidmann arranged a meeting with a young theatrical producer named Roger LeBlond, promising to invest money in one of his shows. Instead, Weidmann shot him in the back of his head and took his wallet containing 5000 francs. On November 22, Weidmann murdered and robbed Fritz Frommer, a young German he had met in jail. Frommer, a Jew, had been held there for his anti-Nazi views. Once again the victim was shot in the nape of the neck. His body was buried in the basement of the Saint-Cloud house where De Koven was interred. Five days later Weidmann committed his final murder. Raymond Lesobre, areal estate agent, was shot in the killer’s preferred fashion while showing him around a house in Saint-Cloud. Five thousand francs were taken from him]

Arrest

Weidmann after his arrest.

Officers from the Sûreté, led by a young inspector named Primborgne, eventually tracked Weidmann to the villa from a business card left at Lesobre’s office. Arriving at his home, Weidmann found two officers waiting for him. Inviting them in, he then turned and fired three times at them with a pistol. Although they were unarmed, the wounded Sûreté men managed to wrestle Weidmann down, knocking him unconscious with a hammer that happened to be nearby.[1] Weidmann was a highly co-operative prisoner, confessing to all his murders, including that of de Koven, the only one for which he expressed regret. He is reported to have said tearfully: “She was gentle and unsuspecting … When I reached for her throat, she went down like a doll.”

The murder trial of Weidmann, Million, Blanc and Tricot in Versailles in March 1939 was the biggest since that of Henri Désiré Landru, the modern-day “Bluebeard”, 18 years earlier. One of Weidmann’s lawyers, Vincent de Moro-Giafferi, had indeed defended Landru. Also present was the French novelistColette, who was engaged by Paris-Soir to write an essay on Weidmann.

Weidmann and Million received the death sentence while Blanc received a jail sentence of 20 months and Tricot was acquitted. Million’s sentence was later commuted to life imprisonment.

Execution

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On June 17, 1939, Weidmann was beheaded outside the prison Saint-Pierre in Versailles. The “hysterical behaviour” by spectators was so scandalous that French president Albert Lebrun immediately banned all future public executions. Unknown to authorities, film of the execution was shot from a private apartment adjacent to the prison. British actor Christopher Lee, who was 17 at the time, witnessed this event.

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JOSEF MENGELE – THE ANGEL OF DEATH

NAZI HOLOCAUST YEARS EXHIBITION AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL (LEST WE FORGET)

Here is more interactive and hopefully educational, historical background footage and insight into the horrors of the Nazi holocaust years.  

Josef Rudolf Mengele was a German SS officer and a physician in the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz. He earned doctorates in anthropology from Munich University and in medicine from Frankfurt University

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Josef Rudolf Mengele (German: [ˈjoːzɛf ˈʁuːdɔlf ˈmɛŋələ] ( listen); 16 March 1911 – 7 February 1979) was a German SS officer and a physician in the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz. He earned doctorates in anthropology from Munich University and in medicine from Frankfurt University. He initially gained notoriety for being one of the SS physicians who supervised the selection of arriving transports of prisoners, determining who was to be killed and who was to become a forced laborer, but is far more infamous for performing human experiments on camp inmates, including children, for which Mengele was called the “Angel of Death”.

In 1940, he was placed in the reserve medical corps, after which he served with the 5th SS Panzergrenadier Division Wiking in the Eastern Front. In 1942, he was wounded at the Soviet front and was pronounced medically unfit for combat. He was then promoted to the rank ofSS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain) for saving the lives of three German soldiers. He survived the war and, after a period of living incognito in Germany, he fled to South America, where he evaded capture for the rest of his life, despite being hunted as a Nazi war criminal.

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GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE CONSTABULARY’S FINGERPRINT KIT (CIRCA 1940’S)

A SUPERB PIECE OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE POLICE CRIME SCENE MEMORABILIA  ON DISPLAY AT LITTLEDEAN JAIL

JUST ONE OF A GREAT MANY BRITISH POLICE MEMORABILIA ITEMS THROUGH THE AGES ON DISPLAY IN ONE OF THE UK’S LARGEST PRIVATE COLLECTIONS OF LAW AND ORDER MATERIAL . 

BELOW ARE VARIOUS IMAGES OF WHAT  IS BELIEVED TO BE ONE OF THE VERY FEW SURVIVING VINTAGE  GLOUCESTERSHIRE CONSTABULARY’S FINGERPRINT KITS (CIRCA 1940’S) . COMPLETE WITH IT’S ORIGINAL BOX, INKS, ROLLER, POWDERS AND BRUSHES ETC .ALSO VARIOUS APPROPRIATE  DOCUMENTATION FOR FINGERPRINT EVIDENCE PURPOSES . VIEW OF  UNOPENED FINGERPRINT KIT BOXVARIOUS POLICE AND CRIME SCENE DOCUMENTATION FOUND WITHIN THE INNER SLEEVE OF FINGERPRINT KIT BOX

Fingerprint Bureau

Very many books and scientific papers have been published on the subject of Fingerprints, and reference to ‘the prints from man’s hand’ can even be found in the Bible.

The study of the application of fingerprints for useful purposes appears to have started in the latter part of the 17th century when, in 1684, the anatomist Doctor Nehemiah Grew published a paper on the subject which he illustrated with drawings of various fingerprint patterns. About the same period, in Italy, Professor Malpighi was investigating the function of the skin.

It was in 1860 that the use of fingerprints as a reliable means of individual identification really started. Sir William Herschel, an administrator in the province of Bengal, India, appreciated the unique nature of fingerprints and established the principle of their persistence. Fingerprints are formed in full detail before birth and remain unchanged throughout life unless they are affected by a deep seated injury. A method of classifying fingerprints and research in this field was initiated by Sir Francis Galton and Henry Faulds independently at the end of the 19th century.

Anthropometric measuring devices

Anthropometric measuring devices in brass and mounted on wood. Used in the Alphonse Bertillon system of identification

In 1900 a committee was appointed by the Home Secretary under the chairmanship of Lord Belper to enquire into methods of the ‘Identification of Criminals by Measurement and Fingerprints’. About this time, Mr. E.R. Henry, later to become Sir Edward Henry, Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, published his book, ‘The Classification and Use of Fingerprints’. This proposed a method of fingerprint classification and comparison to replace the inaccurate Bertillon anthropometric measurement system, which was then in use, which only partially relied upon fingerprints for identification. Henry was one of sixteen witnesses invited to appear before this committee to explain the system which he had devised. Following the recommendations made by this committee, the Fingerprint Branch at New Scotland Yard was created in July 1901 using the Henry System of Classification.

The Fingerprint Branch at New Scotland Yard, which started with just three people, has expanded over the years and the present Identification Service is now provided by a staff of 600 technical and administrative officers. Today, there are two Fingerprint Bureaux at New Scotland Yard, viz. the National Fingerprint Office (which together with the National Criminal Record Office forms the National Identification Bureau) and the Metropolitan Police Scenes of Crime Branch, which incorporates the Fingerprint, Photographic and Scenes of Crime Examination Services.

The importance of having a National Fingerprint Collection has been recognised by all police forces in the United Kingdom even though they have their own local fingerprint bureaux.

Each day, the fingerprints of people who have been sentenced to a term of imprisonment, and those who have been arrested and charged with other than the most minor offences, are sent to New Scotland Yard for processing. The fingerprints of those who are not subsequently convicted are, of course, destroyed.

One of the primary functions of the National Fingerprint Office is to establish whether the person has a previous record. After a name check has been made, the enquiry fingerprints are compared with the master set of any suggested match. If this proves negative, the fingerprints are coded and the coding transmitted to the Police National Computer at Hendon.

The coding of the enquiry prints is analysed by the computer and only those criminals whose prints could possibly match are listed as respondents on a computer print-out.

Until recently, Identification Officers would make a comparison of the enquiry with the paper fingerprint forms of the respondents, which are all filed in the National Fingerprint Collection, in order to establish whether any computer suggestion was positive.

However, after some years of research and planning, an automatic retrieval system known as the ‘Videofile System’ was installed and fingerprint comparisons are now made by Identification Officers at Visual Display Units.

These processes, which have eliminated the need for much laborious searching, often result in a rapid reply from the computer indicating that there is no inclusion which matches the coding enquiry fingerprints.

Within the organisation of the Scenes of Crime Branch there operates a field force of 200 Identification Officers and Scenes of Crime Officers who are responsible for examining Scenes of Crime throughout the Metropolitan Police District. Scenes of serious crime are examined for fingerprints by Senior Identification Officers. The function of these officers is to detect and record any finger or palm marks which an offender may have left at the scene. They also retrieve forensic clues, e.g. blood samples, shoe marks, etc., which are then forwarded to the Forensic Science Laboratory for analysis.

Finger and palm marks are sent to the Metropolitan Police Scenes of Crime Branch at New Scotland Yard where, after various elimination and checking procedures, the finger marks are coded for search on either the Police National Computer (Scenes of Crime System) or the Automatic Fingerprint Recognition System (AFR). The suggested possible fingerprint matches may be compared using the Videofile System or by browsing through the actual fingerprint collections. The Automatic Fingerprint Recognition System is a computerised method of matching fingerprints found at scenes of crime with recorded fingerprints of known offenders. The computer lists, in order of probability, any possible fingerprint matches, but does not itself make any ‘identical or not identical’ decisions. Palm marks are retained for comparison with the palm prints of persons suspected of committing the crime. Final comparisons between crime scene marks and offenders’ prints and decisions as to the identity are carried out by Identification Officers.

One of the earliest cases involving the use of fingerprint evidence was in 1905, when a thumb print, left on a cash box at the scene of a murder in Deptford of shopkeepers Mr. & Mrs. Farrow, was identified as belonging to Alfred Stratton, one of two brothers. As a result of this identification they were jointly charged with the crime and subsequently hanged.

Since then, fingerprint identification has played an important role in many major crime investigations, including such cases as the Great Train Robbery in 1963, and the sad case of Lesley Whittle, who was found brutally murdered in a drainage shaft at Kidsgrove in 1975, and the intriguing case of the ‘Stockwell Strangler’, who was responsible for the murders of eleven pensioners in 1986.

Apart from the technical assistance which is given by Fingerprint Staff in the investigation of crime, positive identification by means of fingerprints has given vital help in cases of serious accidents; for example, train and plane crashes. They have also been valuable in identifying people who have suffered from amnesia.

Like any other major organisation, the Identification Services are always seeking ways of improving the service provided. Although computerisation leads to greater efficiency, it cannot replace the individual expertise of trained Identification Officers and the final decision as to identity which is always made by a qualified Fingerprint Expert.

HOW TO COMPARE FINGERPRINTS … A SHORT VIDEO