Sighet Prison

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The Sighet Memorial Museum.
Sighet Memorial Museum, interior with cell doors.

The Sighet prison, located in the town of Sighetu Marmaţiei, Maramureş county, Romania, was used by Romania to hold criminals, POWs and political prisoners. It is now the site of the Sighet Memorial Museum, part of the Memorial of the Victims of Communism.[1]


The prison in Sighetu Marmaţiei (often referred to just as "Sighet") was built in 1897, when the area was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, as a prison for criminal offenders.

After 1945, at the end of World War II, the repatriation of Romanians who had been prisoners of war and deportees in the Soviet Union was done through Sighet.

In August 1948, Sighet prison was reserved for political opponents of the government. At first, it held a group of students, pupils and peasants from the Maramureş region. Many of the surviving prisoners are still living in Sighet to this very day.

On the night of May 5, 1950, over one hundred former dignitaries from the whole country were brought to the Sighet penitentiary (former ministers and other politicians, as well as academics, economists, military officers, historians, and journalists), some of them sentenced to heavy punishments, and others held without any form of trial. The majority were over 60 years old. Many important figures of inter-war Romania died in custody, including the leader of the National Peasants' Party and former Prime Minister of Romania, Iuliu Maniu.

Between 1950-1955, no death certificates were issued and the families of the deceased were not notified.[2]

Notable inmates[edit]



  1. ^ The Sighet Memorial to the Victims of Communism
  2. ^ Inchisoarea ministrilor,, published August 21, 2006; retrieved August 3, 2015.

External links[edit]

Media related to Sighet Memorial at Wikimedia Commons