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Glossary

  • Reactive orders

    Information relating to previous requests filed at ITS, regarding which - thanks to recent additions to the documents - further information can be provided.

  • Reception Camp

    In general, reception camps are intended to hold refugees seeking shelter. At the outbreak of the war, several countries started setting up reception camps for Jewish refugees mainly in regions bordering on the National Socialist German Reich. In the course of the latter's territorial expansion in the Second World War, some of these camps, e.g. the Dutch camp Westerbork, fell into the hands of the Nazis who converted and reused the camps.

  • Reference card

    A reference card is produced for every name that appears in the documents kept at the International Tracing Service (ITS). It is filed in the Central Name Index where it serves as a finding aid.

  • Reichsführer SS

    The commanding position and highest rank of the SS. Adolf Hitler appointed Heinrich Himmler as Reichsführer-SS in 1929, helping to make him one of the most powerful figures in Nazi Germany. Himmler expanded the SS into a powerful military unit and largely established and controlled the concentration and extermination camps.

  • Reichsgau / Administrative district of the Reich

    As of 1938/39 the territories adjacent to the German Reich were annexed and incorporated as „Reichsgaue“ (Reich District) under the leadership of the Reich Governor into the territory of the German Reich. This was carried out in Austria, Poland (Danzig-West Prussia, Warta Country) and Czechoslovakia (Sudetenland).

  • Reichsicherheitshauptamt / Main Office for Reich Security

    Abbreviation: RSHA

    The Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA), created on 27 September 1939, was an amalgamation of the security police (Gestapo and criminal investigations police) and the Sicherheitsdienst (SD) security service of the SS. With approximately 3,000 staff at its command, the RSHA constituted the central German police authority, playing a decisive part in the persecution, deportation and extermination of the European Jews.

  • Reichskommissariat / Administrative district headed by a Reich Commissar

    Abbreviation: R.K.

    The Nazis used the term Reichskommissariat to denote not only the territories they occupied in the East (R.K. Ostland and R.K. Ukraine), but also other territories administered by means of a Nazi-installed civilian occupation authority and headed by a Reichskommissar, as was the case with Norway and the Netherlands.

  • Reichsvereinigung der Juden / Reich Association of Jews

    In June 1939 all Jewish organizations still extant were forcibly integrated within the Reichsvereinigung der Juden in Deutschland (The Reich Association of Jews in Germany), created by means of the 10th order regarding the Reichsbürgergesetz (Reich Citizenship Law). The Reich Association was controlled by the Reich Ministry of the Interior or the Geheime Staatspolizei and the Sicherheitsdienst (SD) and, as of September 1939, by the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (RSHA). The Reich Association was mainly entrusted with social tasks, but also compelled by the Nazi authorities to engage in the organizational implementation of Anti-Jewish actions.

  • Repatriation

    The return of Displaced Persons (DPs) to the country they originated in.

  • Reports on Changes in the Camp Strength

    Veränderungsmeldungen are daily updated lists on the number of the inmates present in the concentration camps. They showed the figures of new-arriving prisoners, of inmates leaving for other concentration camps and of detainees who lost their lives.

  • Requests or inquries

    Requests that the ITS receives either by regular or by electronic mail. Although it may relate to several persons or subjects, the single request is registered in the ITS statistics as one inquiry.

  • Resettlement Center

    These centers housed the so-called DPs - displaced persons - when they had finished their stay in the DP camps. The staff there made out exit papers or visas on their behalf, entered the DPs in transport lists and filled in their travel tickets. They controlled, marked and checked their baggage. Before departing, the DPs had to undergo both a final interview and a medical examination.

  • Revierkarte / Camp infirmary or hospital card

    A Revierkarte (camp infirmary card) was produced for concentration camp inmates admitted to the Krankenbau (camp infirmary or hospital). Apart from the personal details of the respective prisoner, it also included data relating to his or her treatment, such as particulars on vaccinations, anamnesis and examination dates.