History of the memorial
In June 1991 the organisation Förderverein Dokumentations- und Informationszentrum (DIZ) Torgau e.V. (Society for the Promotion of Documentation and Information Centre DIZ Torgau) came into being. It arose from a joint initiative of West Berlin historians and Torgau citizens, some of whom had attempted to research their home town's hushed up history as prison centre even before 1989. In 1995 the exhibition 'Torgau - an End of the War in Europe' in the tower of Hartenfels Castle opened to the public.
Since 1998 DIZ Torgau, as a memorial of national significance, has been funded in equal measure by the German Federal Government and the Free State of Saxony. Since 1999 it has been under the auspices of the Saxon Memorial Foundation dedicated to the memory of the victims of political dictatorship. DIZ Torgau's permanent exhibition 'Traces of Injustice' has been designed in three sections. The first section '"Hostile Elements Shall Be Held in Confinement." The Soviet Special Camps No. 8 and No. 10 in Torgau 1945-1948' opened to the public in September 1996. The section 'Torgau on the Home Front in the Second World War - Military Judiciary, Wehrmacht Prisons, Reich Military Court' has been open since May 1998. In May 2004, the exhibition was completed with the opening of the last section '“Today: an Educational Facility”. The East German Penal System in Torgau 1950-1990'.