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The Twentieth Train

Introduction by Stephanie Weiner

· Background
· Database
· Acknowledgements
· Searching the Database

Background

This database includes 1,638 deportees who were on the 20th transport train from Mechelen that was ambushed on its way to Auschwitz.

This database is generated from a list of deportees appended to the book The Twentieth Train: The True Story of the Ambush of the Death Train to Auschwitz by Marion Schreiber (Grove Press, 2000 edition).  The list is found on pages 269-308, and is a republication of a list from the English translation of Stille Rebellon, published in Germany in 2000.  Four deportees were not assigned arrival numbers.

The list was compiled by Nazi officials at the city of Mechelen, also known as Malines, which lies between Brussels and Antwerp in Belgium.  The deportees boarded the twentieth transport from Mechelen to Auschwitz on 19 April 1943.  Nazi officials assigned numbers to each person based on the date of arrival in Mechelen. 

Marion Schreiber, a Brussels-based journalist and former editor at Der Spiegel, tells the story of three young men who, on 19 April 1943, ambushed a Nazi deportation train carrying 1,638 Jews headed for Auschwitz.  This was the 20th Transport from Mechelen.  They freed 17 young men and women; 23 deportees died in the effort, and 231 fled the convoy.  Most of the deportees chose or were forced to stay aboard, and some of them survived Auschwitz. 

"Spelling of names is inconsistent since many deportees did not hold ID cards and often preferred to use the Belgian versions of their Jewish names."

The Liste Speciale, which prefaces the main list, denotes camp members who had been returned to Mechelen following an attempted escape from the nineteenth transport.

Some deportees on the general list were, in fact, sent on to Auschwitz at a later date.  Their final transport numbers are displayed in Roman numerals in the Comments column.

NUMBERDATE OF ARRIVAL
1-20 16 January 1943
31-37 15 January 1943
38-73 19 January 1943
74-124 21 January 1943
125-221 22 January 1943
222-247 26 January 1943
248-272 27 January 1943
273-316 28 January 1943
317-378 29 January 1943
379-413 2 February 1943
414-460 3 February 1943
461-471 4 February 1943
472-497 5 February 1943
498-536 6 February 1943
537-543 9 February 1943
544-595 10 February 1943
596-621 11 February 1943
622-650 12 February 1943
651-665 13 February 1943
666-667 15 February 1943
668-724 16 February 1943
725-747 18 February 1943
748-818 19 February 1943
819-833 20 February 1943
834-861 23 February 1943
862-876 25 February 1943
877-909 26 February 1943
910-952 28 February 1943
953-1030 2 March 1943
1031-1058 5 March 1943
1059-1079 6 March 1943
1080-1094 8 March 1943
1095-1099 10 March 1943
1100-1139 11 March 1943
1140-1185 12 March 1943
1186-1191 13 March 1943
1192-1209 16 March 1943
1210-1234 17 March 1943
1235-1266 19 March 1943
1267-1293 20 March 1943
1294-1301 24 March 1943
1302-1310 27 March 1943
1311-1331 30 March 1943
1332-1359 2 April 1943
1360-1386 3 April 1943
1387-1424 7 April 1943
1425-1463 10 April 1943
1464-1501 12 April 1943

Database

This database includes 1,638 deportees. 

The fields of the database are as follows:

  • Number
  • Surname
  • Given Name
  • Birth Date
  • Birthplace
  • Occupation
  • Data Source
  • Comments

Acknowledgments

The information contained in this database was indexed from a list in the Appendix [pages 269-308] in the book, The Twentieth Train: The True Story of the Ambush of the Death Train to Auschwitz by Marion Schreiber, in the Grove Press edition published in 2000.  The Dewey Decimal Number is 940.53183 and the Library of Congress Call Number is DS135.B4 S3813.  Grove/Atlantic Press, Inc. was kind enough to permit the addition of this database to the JewishGen Holocaust database list.  This information is accessible to you today thanks to the efforts of Stephanie Weiner, a JewishGen volunteer, who is responsible for the transcription of this file.

In addition, thanks to JewishGen Inc. for providing the website and database expertise to make this database accessible.  Special thanks to Warren Blatt and Michael Tobias for their continued contributions to Jewish genealogy.  Particular thanks to Nolan Altman, coordinator of Holocaust files.

Nolan Altman
Coordinator - Holocaust Database
December 2009


Searching the Database

This database is searchable via JewishGen's Holocaust Database.


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