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MinorInHistory

What were stateside P.O.W. guards issued?

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Hello everyone,

 

I was wondering if anyone had any photos or examples of what US P.O.W. camp guards would have worn while on duty. I was wondering what type of gear, clothing, and weapons these units would be issued. Also, where did these units come from? Where troops just assigned to camps from other units? 
 

I’m specifically interested in the Fort Hunt instillation, Aka P.O. Box 1142. It was used to interrogate higher priority prisoners like German scientists and to pack escape kits for American P.O.W.s in Europe. Kind of ironic. Any photos, documents, or gear lists from the troops garrisoned there would be much appreciated. 
 

Any information at all on this subject would be most appreciated.
 

Thank you,

 

MinorInHistory 

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There are numerous websites/webpages if you do a quick google search.  There is also at least one book:  Nazi Prisoners of War in America, by Arnold Krammer.  I seem to recall a number of photos in this book.

 

From what I recall, they wore standard U.S. Army uniforms - khakis or wools depending on the season and location.  I recall seeing the guards wearing helmets early on, but not as much later.

 

Sorry I can't give you much more hard information.

 

Steve


Collecting 3rd Armored Division items of all kinds from all eras, specializing in the 36th Armored Infantry Regiment.

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My father was 86th INF and machine gunned in April 45 near Bilstein. After recovery he spent a few months at a POW camp in Tenn guarding Kraut POW's awaiting his expected discharge. Nothing special in that duty. I have a pic somewhere of him there and he is in regular fatigues. 

 

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Thanks for the info! One of my interests has always been stateside troops guarding coastal forts and prisoners, so thank you for sharing!

 

MinorInHistory

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I think Steve B. is correct in that they wore standard U.S. Army uniforms - khakis or wools depending on the season and location.  In addition to that some obviously appear to have worn the "MP" arm band and maybe a nightstick as seen in one of the photos from an album I got from a prisoner of war camp in McAlester, Oklahoma.  In some of the other pictures in the album I note the camp even had a bowling alley and swimming pool built for the prisoners.  

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Specific areas of collecting and buying interest:

WWI/WWII 40th (Sunshine) Division, Camp Kearny, Camp Harry Jones, WWI/WWII 158th Infantry, USS Oklahoma, USS Swordfish (SS-193), Pearl Harbor Survivors Association, Mexican Border (1916),

Norman Air Technical Training Center (NATTC) Norman, OK, Tinker Field or AFB, Submariner Items, Knives, Bayonets, Sweetheart Jewelry, other unique

or odd items with interesting stories.

 

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I've only seen old pictures, some in an occasional family album, but mostly in post museums. Most similar. the standard uniform, wools or the khakis, often the MP brassard, and  either a garrison cap or sometimes helmet. Some had a pistol belt with canteen and pistol and long guns were mostly the shotguns. Later pictures showed a few more M1 rifles and carbines. 

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Yes, I agree with you. I’ve also seen a lot of photos in which the guards have 03 Springfields. 
 

MinorInHistory 

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My Mom recalled the guards carried Thompson submachine guns when they brought POW work teams to come pick apples on the farm.


Gil Burket
Omaha, NE
Specializing in Fakes and Reproductions
of the Vietnam War

burkcats@hotmail.com

 

"One is easily fooled by that which one loves."

 

Moliere: Tartuffe

 

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Camp Perry near Port Clinton, Ohio, was a WW2 POW camp.  It had been an Ohio NG base before the war, and after.  It is also the site of the NRA's national rifle match.  They have a museum so perhaps they could provide the info you seek.

 

Gil



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Here is an MP Guard at Fort Bliss, Texas. He is in guard tower #1 of the POW compound and he is holding a Thompson sub-machine gun and at his feet is a .30 caliber machine gun.

 

He appears to be wearing a field jacket, garrison cap and OD field pants. The tower railing obscures the view but the MP may also have on a pistol belt or cartridge belt.

 

The Solider was a member of the 309th MPEGC (Military Police Escort Guard Company) and the photo was taken in March 1944.

 

Leigh 

 

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"Pain is only Weakness Leaving the Body"

MSG Leigh E Smith Jr
US Army (Retired)

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These 3 Soldiers are in downtown El Paso, Texas wearing 4 pocket dress uniforms. Photo taken in February 1944. Caption on back of photo indicates these men were members of the 309th MPEGC (Military Police Escort Guard Company). The Soldier in the center has a shoulder sleeve insignia but I can't make out what it is.. I imagine it would be a Service Command Patch.

 

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Leigh  


"Pain is only Weakness Leaving the Body"

MSG Leigh E Smith Jr
US Army (Retired)

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Thanks for the photos! You guys are providing a lot of great material. I’m trying to gather as many examples as I can, and so far the turnout has been amazing.

 

MinorInHistory

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