Terezin as it looked in October 2000

Old buildings in Terezin were badly in need of restoration work in October 2000

Many of the buildings in Terezin are in a sad state of disrepair

The photograph above, taken in 2000, shows an abandoned building in the former Theresienstadt ghetto where all the buildings were once in pristine condition during the Red Cross visit in the spring of 1944 after the Nazis did a beautification of the town to impress the inspectors.

About half the buildings in Terezin were empty when I visited the town in 2000, and their stucco walls were crumbling so that the bricks underneath were exposed. Some of the inhabited buildings were also in a sad state of decay. There were many broken windows in the abandoned buildings, and even some missing window glass in the inhabited apartment buildings. It was hard for me to believe that, in today's world, people are still living in such squalor.

I saw one new apartment building, which is of typical Communist construction, built in the Bauhaus modern style out of cheap materials. It is very obviously out of place in this historic town full of neo-classical buildings from the 18th century.

Terezin looks like six square blocks in the heart of a large city, rather than a typical small town or village. Although the old fortifications are still standing, a road runs through the town and it is not completely closed off by walls.

There are no single family dwellings or front yards in the whole town. All of the buildings are large, sometimes the length of the block, and most of the buildings have hidden courtyards in the center. I could see though the open doors into some of the courtyards of the inhabited buildings; they were filled with junk and sometimes criss-crossed with clotheslines where laundry was hung out to dry. The photograph below shows a typical courtyard in Terezin.

The buildings in Terezin have inner courtyards

The town is laid out in a perfect grid pattern with six major streets running north and south and seven alleys or narrow streets running east and west, although the streets are not precisely pointing due north and south.

Besides the main town square, there are three other small parks: the Stadt Park (City Park), the Brunnen Park (Fountain Park) and the Kleiner Park (Small park).

Brunnen park was deserted in October 2000

Old building in the town of Terezin

Residence in Terezin, the former Theresienstadt ghetto

Nice residential building in Terezin, 2000 photo

Restaurants and Hotel

Children's Barracks

Adult's Barracks

Historic Buildings

Art Museum

Map of Ghetto

Walls and Gate

Ghetto Museum

Town Square

Old Buildings