Template:Infobox Ort in Österreich Mauthausen is a small market town in the Austrian state of Upper Austria. It is located at about 20 kilometres east of the city of Linz.
During World War II, it became the site of the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp complex.
The area of Mauthausen has been settled for many millennia, as shown by archaeological discoveries dating back to the Neolithic age. During the time of the Roman Empire, it was at the crossroads of two trade routes.
At the end of the 10th century it became a toll (Maut in German) station for ships, and the name "Muthusen" for the settlement is first mentioned in 1007
During World War I, a prisoner of war camp existed to the east of Mauthausen. Russian, Serbian, and mostly Italian (at times 40,000 men) soldiers were imprisoned there, around 9000 of whom died in the camp. A war cemetery exists in their memory.
During World War II, from 1938 to 1945, one of the first massive concentration camp complexes in Nazi Germany was set up to the west of the town. In early 1940, a large number of Poles were transferred to the Mauthausen-Gusen complex. An estimated 30,000 Poles died at Mauthausen-Gusen. Inmates were subjected to barbaric conditions, the most infamous of which was being forced to carry heavy stone blocks up 186 steps from the camp quarry. The steps became known as the "Stairway of Death."
Mauthausen experienced flooding from the Danube in 1954 and 2002.
Places of interest include:
- Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp
- 15th-century church
- picturesque old town
- 16th century Pragstein Castle