On 27 April 1942 a deportation transport left Vienna Aspang Station with 1000 Jewish men, women and children on board. Its destination was the small town of Wlodawa in Lublin district, Poland, about 100 kilometres east of the district capital, and 11 km north of Sobibor extermination camp. Wlodawa was host to a large Jewish community, at the beginning of the war of the 10,000 inhabitants about 7000 had been Jewish.
From the spring of 1942 the numbers of the Jewish population in Wlodawa rose considerably because of the deportees from the German Reich. Conditions of life in the ghetto, to judge from the few eye-witnesses' reports we have, were extremely difficult. Only those men who were capable of work and were deployed by the Cholm Water Office on drainage and river regulation work, were given a minimal amount of food and pay. Towards the end when the ghetto was liquidated the number of these workers amounted to about 1500 men.
Between 22 and 24 May 1942 the first »Judenaktion« was carried out in the ghetto. 500 older Jews incapable of work, of whom the majority came from Wlodawa, although some came from the German Reich, were arrested by the SS (SD) with the help of local auxiliary troops, and taken to Sobibor. In the course of this »Aktion« some victims were already murdered in Wlodawa. A further »Aktion« in the summer of 1942 was directed against Jewish children between the ages of ten and fourteen. More than 100 children were separated from their parents - partly by force - and taken to the extermination camp at Sobibor.
In October 1942 the liquidation of the ghetto started. SD staff, members of the Gendarmerie and the Schutzpolizei, and local auxiliary staff from camp Trawniki began during the early morning hours of 24 October 1942 to arrest the Jewish population of Wlodawa. Over 6000 Jews, some of them from labor camps in the area around the town, were herded onto the playing fields and from there to the station. There 500 workmen were put apart, all others were transported to Sobibor to be murdered.
At the beginning of November, these »work Jews« were also scheduled for deportation, but because the train did not have enough room for them all, part of the group was murdered at the station itself.
Of the 1000 Austrian Jews deported to Wlodawa only three survived.