Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Boredom Must Have Been Overwhelming

This rare color photograph, from May 1945, only days after the war’s end, shows recently-surrendered German soldiers interned in a British Prisoner Of War Camp in occupied Germany.

Hundreds of thousands of German soldiers spent weeks and weeks in such open-air camps before they were discharged and allowed to return to their homes.

The many dugouts must be beds the soldiers created for themselves. It must have been warmer sleeping in dugouts than on flat ground.


  1. My father was an American soldier, a Private First Class in the 14th Armoured (known as the Liberators after the war), infantry around tanks. He stood guard over 300 German POW's at a time, who would not try to run or attack because we, American's had all the food. He told me this, himself. His uniform had a 29 inch waist and he was 5'5" tall. My father had his 20th birthday a week before he landed at Marsailes, France and invaded Europe. After liberating a camp, he and what was left of his squad would march the villagers through the camps to show them what they had done. The smell was unmistakeable and everywhere. My mother's family is Lithuanian. My grandparents came to the US in the teens. My mother's cousin contacted my grandfather from a refugee camp in Germany and asked for assistance as a sponser so she and her husband could come to America. We don't know what happen to the rest of my grandmother's family. I am in contact with my grandfather's brothers great grand daughter, my cousin. She is unable to find my grandmother's family, either. They were of noble birth and they have disappered.

  2. Thank you for your beautiful comment. I was most moved.

    I hope you find out what happened to your grandmother's family some day.