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The Historical Educational Trail “Jáchymov Hell”

The Rovnost Camp - code name “P”

You are on the historical educational trail „Jáchymov Hell“, which leads little known, beautiful sites containing unforgettable history. The trail was created by the mining association “Barbora” in Jáchymov with the support of the Confederation of Political Prisoners and the Club of Czech Tourists.

The situation of the labour camps in surroundings of Jáchymov (1952)

Original camp for German prisoners, also called “Old Rovnost”, standing just next to the mining tower on an old mining dump. Later, the dump containing uranium ore was taken away and on the nearby plateau was established in 1950 the camp “New Rovnost”. The mine was founded in 1792 and named Rudolf. In 1850 has been renamed to Werner, in memory of the distinguished German geologist. Name of Rovnost (“Equality”) got the shaft until after 1945.

Mine entrance at the end of the World War II

In the camp Rovnost, offices and dormitories of camp commander also were situated. There were guardhouses, guard towers and other facilities serving surveillance. Stores of clothing, rations and fuel, laundry, bathroom, kitchen, canteen and cultural centre stood there. A substantial part of the camp consisted of living barracks. All camp buildings were wooden. In the camp there were two gates. The main gate served as a contact with the outside world. The second gate connected the camp with the workplace, the Rovnost shaft. It was a tunnel made up of barbed wire, prisoners walked there in quintuple files in five to the shift and back. In prisoner jargon, the tunnel was called „Alley of Lost Hope“ or „Alley of Communism.“

The camp Rovnost on the contemporary aerial photo

A dreaded commander of the Rovnost camp was Albín Dvořák, for his slight build called „Tom Thumb“. He suffered from an inferiority complex, which masked by sadism. The Rovnost camp was abolished on 1 June 1961.

GPS position

N 50° 22.245', E 12° 53.595'