Rudolf Franz Ferdinand Höss (also Höß, Hoeß or Hoess; 25 November 1901 – 16 April 1947) was a German SS functionary during the Nazi era who was later judged to be a war criminal.
He was the longest-serving commandant of Auschwitz concentration and extermination camp.
He tested and implemented various methods to accelerate Hitler's plan to systematically exterminate the Jewish population of Nazi-occupied Europe, known as the "Final Solution".
On the initiative of one of his subordinates, Karl Fritzsch, Höss introduced pesticide Zyklon B containing hydrogen cyanide into the killing process.Höss joined the Nazi Party in 1922 at the age of 21 and the SS in 1934.
From 4 May 1940 to November 1943, and again from 8 May 1944 to 18 January 1945, he was in charge of Auschwitz, where more than a million people were killed before the defeat of Germany.
He was hanged in 1947 following a trial before the Polish Supreme National Tribunal.
During his imprisonment, at the request of the Polish authorities, he wrote his memoirs, released in English under the title Commandant of Auschwitz: The Autobiography of Rudolf Hoess.