The largest collection of information on Holocaust victims and survivors is held by the International Red Cross at its International Tracing Service facility in Bad Arolsen, Germany. Requests for information may be submitted directly to ITS or through a national Red Cross office in your state or country.

These organizations may provide documentation of forced labor, forced evacuation from Soviet-controlled areas, internment in concentration camps, or deportation.

Their certificates may be used to support claims for reparations.

Documentation comes from transportation or deportation lists, death books, records of medical experiments, concentration or labor camp registrations, ghetto records, and displaced persons files.

Applicants should call or visit a local chapter of the Red Cross, Red Crescent or Israel’s Magen David Adom to complete a questionnaire. Details remain confidential and the service is free.

Be ready to answer questions about the sought person, including:

Family and first names, any other names that might have been used; name in Cyrillic or Hungarian script if applicable; gender; date and place of birth; parents’ names and mother’s maiden name; religion; nationality; marital details during the war; last known address.

The applicant also needs to provide his or her own personal data and the reason for requesting the search.

The 11 countries overseeing ITS have agreed to give one electronic copy of the archive to each country. That will happen only after a legal process is completed in each country, probably next year.

The countries are Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The U.S. authority handling the records will be the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

On the Net:

International Tracing Service:

U.S. Holocaust Museum:

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies:

American Red Cross Holocaust and War Victims Tracing Center:

Yad Vashem Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority:

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