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Gargzdai (Gorzd), Lithuania


Photo/Map Comparisons of Vezaitine Forest


     Locating the two killing sites of the women and children on historical maps of the Vezaitine Forest may add information, for example, to attempt to establish the routes by which the victims were taken to the executions. The animations below align the image on Google Earth, showing the execution sites, with German, Russian, Soviet and Lithuanian maps from the time. Any such alignment is only approximate.

Animation 1

Vezaitine Forest Comparison (1872-2019)

  vezaitine animation large


Animation 1 attempts an alignment covering a large area of the Vezaitine Forest. The following maps and satellite photo are approximately aligned:

1. Russian Map X-1 1:126,000 (1866-1872) at mapywig

2. Reichsamt fur Landesaufnahme (1893) at David Rumsey Map Collection

3. composite - Russian 1:84000 VIII-10 (1913) (northern portion of composite) and IX-10 (1914) (southern portion) at mapywig

4.  composite -  Karte des Westlichen Russlands 1:100,000 J-18 (Korciany) from landkartenarchiv.de (northern portion of composite) and K-18 (Paaschken) (1915) (southern portion of composite)

5.  composite - Map IX-10-B Gruppe Kowno 1:25,000 (1915) (southern portion of composite) and Map VIII-10-H Gruppe Kowno 1:25,000 (1915) (northern portion of composite) from mapywig

6.  Das Memelgebiet 1:100,000 (1934, but based on earlier data) at lithuanianmaps.com and mapywig

7.  Soviet   N-34-II Klaipeda 1:200,000 (1937)at mapywig

8.  Soviet N-34-8-C 1:50,000 (1894-1939) (Endreyavas) at mapywig

9.  composite - Lithuanian Army Topographic 1:100,000 (1938-1939) (from maps 1200, 1201, 1300, 1301) at lithuanianmaps.com. Maps are also available at at maps4u.lt

10. Soviet N-34-8 1:100,000 Plunge (1978)

11. Soviet N-34-8-C 1:50,000 Kuliai (1978)

12. Soviet N-34-8-C 1:50,000 Kuliai (1988)

13.  Google Earth image  2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google; Image 2019 Digital Globe

14.  adds two women's killing sites to Google Earth image  2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google; Image 2019 Digital Globe

Note: For a current map, and aerial photos from 2015-2017 and 2009-2010, see maps.lt. Those map and aerials show an apparent footpath similar to the dotted line boundary indicated by the yellow arrow below, extending southeast from the main road in Map #9, Animation 1 (Lithuanian Army Topographic 1301). No path is shown there on the other maps in the Animation.

asmoniske footpath


Animation 2

Southwest Site

map comparison sw site

Animation 2 attempts to approximately locate the southwest killing site, by placing the co-ordinates of that site on Google Earth:

1) Google Earth image (2019) showing yellow pin at southwest site; coordinates from Holocaust Atlas of Lithuania  Image 2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google; Image 2019 Digital Globe

2) Grossblatt No. 1, Memel - Karte des Deutschen Reiches (June, 1941)

3) Lithuanian Army Topographic (1938-1939) (composite from maps 1200, 1201, 1300, 1301 at lithuanianmaps.com.) Maps are also available at at maps4u.lt.



By using the mouse to place the computer's cursor on the pin, the site may be located on the other maps in the animation.

Once again, this attempted alignment covers a wide area of the forest.

The German map shown in Animations 2 and 3, although dated June, 1941 shows the situation on the ground as it existed earlier than the Lithuanian topographic maps dated 1938-1939. The particular German map was chosen for these animations because the color helps to show the terrain. This map series failed to show important changes to the roads within Gargzdai which occurred during the late 1930's, even though these changes are shown on the Lithuanian maps. It is unclear to what extent various logging roads shown on the German maps, but not on the Lithuanian maps, continued to exist in September, 1941. One such road omitted from the Lithuanian maps may have been the route taken to the southwest site described by one of the perpetrators.


Animation 3

Southwest Site - Magnified View


    Animation 3 is focused on a smaller area of the forest. It attempts to locate the southwest killing site more accurately, by looking for apparent fixed points in road intersections in Animations 1 and 2, closer to the killing site. If the location of these intersections remained unchanged up to the present day, then they may be used to obtain a more precise alignment. This animation cycles at intervals of 4.5 seconds:

1) Russian (1892-1939) N-34-8-C  1:50,000

2) Grossblatt No. 1, Memel - Karte des Deutschen Reiches (June, 1941)

3) Lithuanian Army Topographic (1938-1939) (composite from maps 1200, 1201, 1300, 1301) at lithuanianmaps.com.

4) Google Earth image (2019). Image 2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google; Image 2019 Digital Globe

5) Google Earth Image showing coordinates of Southwest Site from Holocaust Atlas of Lithuania. Image 2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google; Image 2019 Digital Globe




vezaitines sw magnified



Animation 4

Northeast Site
compare google ne site

Above: Animation showing at 5 second intervals:

1) Google Earth Image (2019) showing pin at northeast site; coordinates from Holocaust Atlas of Lithuania Image 2019 CNES / Airbus; 2018 Google

2) Composite: Grossblatt 1 (Memel) (June, 1941) (southern portion of composite); Grossblatt 1a (Telsche) (1944) from landkartenarchiv.de (northern portion of composite)

3) Lithuanian Army Topographic (1938-1939) (composite from maps 1200, 1201, 1300, 1301) at lithuanianmaps.com



  

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This page updated 10/01/2020

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