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Where did Stalag Luft 3 end up???

Discussion in 'WWII General' started by wilconqr, Jul 17, 2003.

  1. wilconqr

    wilconqr Member

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    I am still researching, to no avail, my Economics teacher's late father and his participation as a B-24 crewman on the Ploesti raid. I am trying to find out what unit, I.e. Bomber Group, Wing, etc., he served in. I thought I might have it licked when my teacher presented me with some information on his father. His name was T/Sgt Clarence H. Guider A.S.N. #34135727 and was a P.O.W., #80196 at Stalag III Block 5. This information came from a "camp log" that Mr. Guider kept including daily entries as to the treatment that they (American and British Airmen) recieved/endured. My teacher said that his father was some kind of a commander in the camp. What I think he must mean is that he was possibly in command of his "Block"-(Barracks- Block 5) since he was an enlisted man. Albeit, the "log" has written,in very good handwriting:
    Stalag Luft III Block 5
    Nurnberg-Langwasser, Germany
    T/Sgt Clarence H. Guider
    Now, in researching this particular P.O.W. camp I found out that Stalag Luft III was originally located in Sagan-Selisia Bavaria (now a part of Poland) and was moved to Nurnburg-Langwasser, Germany, probably as a result of advanceing Russians. Another conflicting report says that P.O.W.'s were moved from Stalag Luft III to Stalag VIIA in Mooseburg because of advancing Russians. Now I do not know about this, but the "Camp Log" that my teacher has specifically states that Stalag Luft III was (at that time; late 44-45?) located at Nurnburg-Langwasser. My problem is that all relation to Stalag Luft III that I can find on the internet gives reference to it being located at Sagan (Zagan, Poland)and nothing is mentioned (as far as I can find)about it being anywhere else. An interesting sideline here (but doesn't help me a bit) Stalag Luft III in Sagan was the camp that the "Great Escape" movie w/Steve McQueen was based on. Notwithstanding all that, can anyone help me out with a more comprehensive site on the camp??? :confused: :confused: :confused: :conf
     
  2. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    did you make a posting to www.armyairforces.com yet ?

    go to bombgroups but you will have to sign in as a member first. It may be worth your time though....

    ~E
     
  3. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    wilconqr, when you sign on, go and post on the Heavy bomber forums. Give as much information as possible if you can. do not despair if the Web-master Steve moves your question to another more helpful forum....

    ~E
     
  4. Stevin

    Stevin Ace

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  5. wilconqr

    wilconqr Member

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    Erich, I went to this site and entered his name and serial number and what I got back on the Archival database perplexes me further. It has him listed as being in Stalag Luft IV and not Luft III as is written on his camp log. I just wanted to let you know that I did that but I've been sitting at this computer for over five hrs and am tired as all get out. I'll have to continue on tomorrow. Thank you. Both of you. And oh yeAH, I went to Stalag Luft IV's site and his name isn't included on the prisoner roster since he died before 1995 (that's why its not included there) making my efforts harder still. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    my suggestion is still and post on the Heavy bombers discussion with your statements about how the mix up has occured if you haven't already. there are enough knowledgable vets that view these fine boards and they can help you. don't give up, tommorrow is another day of research ! You may not get what you want for a year or so. I am still studying one deceased German cousin's WW 2 career and it has been several years sometimes with huge stop-gaps for many months before something comes to light.

    Keep at it :cool:

    ~E
     
  7. wilconqr

    wilconqr Member

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    Read today in T/Sgt Guider's "camp log" entry dated January 31, 1945 orders were given to evacuate Lager B Stalag Luft IV by rail. I also accidentally tripped on the fact that Luft IV recieved its mail through Luft III since Luft IV had no Post Office. Still perplexed since both Luft's were located at different places... My teacher is going to bring in more documents that should help... today he gave me a Red Cross Prisoner of War Bulletin dated January 1944 that was sent to his mother in Vicksburg, Mississippi- its first page is about American Airmen in Rumania, and also has reference to Stalag VII A and civilian internment camps inside Germany- although not much to add to my research, its still interesting. Plan to post this, and other things, on the other site just as soon as I can spare the time... this Economics II stuff is hurting my head... only because I have to take it for by History degree; otherwise I find no enjoyment in the material at all...
     
  8. wilconqr

    wilconqr Member

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    The following is a letter written by a Mr. Henry Showalter, a friend and fellow POW of T/Sgt Guider, which was sent to his wife in 1997; although it is an unofficial source which still requires research to be certain, it sheds light on a few questions that I have about Stalag Luft's III, IV, and Stalag VIIA:
    Sept 29, 97

    To: Trenna Guider

    Guider's and my POW life began on July 16, 43 at Bari, Italy as to the date, Guider and I met it is not in any of my logs.
    I was taken to Del Cola Hospital for Italian Military, I had some burns on my face and arm. (6 day stay)
    July 22, 43 i was taken to a British POW Hosp. campo 203, at Altamyra, Italy.
    Aug 18, 43 the Italians took me to British POW Hospital 204 campo at Castel San Pado.
    (Henry took care of the Pilot who was burned very badly, they lost five men on their plane)
    Italy gave up Sept 8th, 43 at 8:00am.
    Sept 16th the Germans moved many POWS to Bologna campo 19. On 17th at 10:00am Germans moved us by train from Italy to Gorlitz, Austria, Stalag VII A. A French POW camp made into a British camp. It could be that in this camp is where Guider and I met. I wrote my first of several letters over the month to the Der Kommandant. It worked and 7 Americans of us moved on Nov. 7, 43 by train to Stalag VIIIB, Lambsdorf, next to Czechoslovakia. 45,000 POWS from many different countries, mostly British troups.
    This is where Guider and I worked out an I.D. switch for American Joe Pacolt T/Sgt who wanted to go on a work detail into Czechoslovakia where his grandmother lived. (An airman could not go)
    Thomas McGrath was an Australian PFC and could go on work details. McGrath spoke fair German and Guider needed him for his escape program. The switch was a success.
    Feb 11th 44, the Germans agreed to move us American airmen from the British camp to Stalag IIB, an American Army POW Camp at Hammerstine. We airmen again protested to Der Kommandant through International Red Cross.
    April 14, 44, the "49ers" or oldsters were taken by train to Hydekrug, East Prussia Stalag Luft VI, our first Air Force camp.
    July 15th, 44, the Russian forces were 20 miles from the camp, the Germans moved us by truck and rail to memmel, East Prussia. From Memmel we were loaded onto an old coal boat through the mined Baltic Sea, to Swinemuned, Germany from there to Stettin by rail on to Gr. Tychow, Germany, Stalag luft #4.
    Jan 30, 45 some of the camp was moved by train to Nurnberg, Germany, Stalag 13-D.
    April 4, 1945, Germans moved our enlisted camp by foot to Moosberg, Germany, Stalag 7A.
    Guider and I had some good days together even as POW'S.

    God is good,
    Henry Showalter

    This letter was very exciting to me since it gives a clearer and closer understanding to some of the questions I am trying to find out. Of particular interest and something I just noticed was the fact that T/Sgt Joe Pacolt made a successful I.D. switch with Australian PFC Thomas McGrath who spoke fair German. What's exciting here is that the log entry dated Jan 31, 45 in T/Sgt Guider's camp log states that orders were given to evacuate Lager B Stalag Luft IV by rail and that T/Sgt Joe Pacolt (actually PFC Thomas McGrath posing as Pacolt) was assigned as interpretor. Since Showalter's letter states that the "switch" was made in part because T/Sgt Guider needed someone who spoke German for his escape program coupled with the fact that the actual Pacolt did not speak German, I find this to be believable.
     
  9. wilconqr

    wilconqr Member

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    Erich- thanks for directing me to the Army Air Forces site. Luft III, IV, and all the rest are there... ;)
     
  10. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    glad to be of some help sir and hopefully you will receive many more mails and much useful information on a continual basis from the gents that frequent that site. Great bunch of guys and most seem willing to share even the horrific details of capture and time during POW when asked in the right way......

    ~E
     
  11. loveyourneighbor2@msn.com

    loveyourneighbor2@msn.com recruit

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  12. loveyourneighbor2@msn.com

    loveyourneighbor2@msn.com recruit

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    Dear wilconqr, concerning where T/Sgt. Guider was in prison, please be advised that it was not Stalag III because that was only for officers and not enlisted men. By the way, when the Russians were advancing and had gotten too close to Stalag Luft IV, the Germans started vacating the camp. T/Sgt Guider was in charge of the second batch of enlisted men prisoners to leave. When T/Sgt Clarence H. Guider was put in charge of the 1,500 US enlisted men sent to Nurnberg by train, they were sent in cattle cars loaded to the point that they had to stand up and had but one bucket per car to relieve themselves in. They remained in the cattle cars for days and upon reaching one large city were left penned up in the train switching yard during an extended air raid bombing incident by American bombers and fighters. My brother-in-law was in one of the cars. Here is the official account of that plus the URL to the Red Cross Site that reported the disbanding of Luft IV:
    http://www.stalagluft4.org/Paules%20and%20Lunsford.html

    International Red Cross report on Camp Status
    January 31,1945 ​
    Stalag Luft IV,Gross Tychow

    8,033 Americans
    1 Norwegian
    2 French
    60 Polish
    5 Czech
    820 British
    M./Sgt. Frank Paules
    On January 28, 1944, 1500 Americans were sent to Barth (Stalag Luft 1). T/Sgt. William Schilds was made the transport leader. Lt. Boges was the medical officer.
    On the 2nd of February, 1500 Americans were sent to Nurnburg, with T/Sgt Clarence H. Guider in charge. Capt. Kingston was the medical officer.
     
  13. TA152

    TA152 Ace

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    Thank you for the information but I think wilconqr has departed the forums. Don't let that stop you though, you seem to be a good information seeker and we can use that here.
     
  14. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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    Will was here last in Nov. But this thread has been dead since 2003.
     
  15. 8002reverse

    8002reverse Member

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  16. JCFalkenbergIII

    JCFalkenbergIII Expert

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  17. bf109 emil

    bf109 emil Member

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    The prisoners from stalagluft 3 ended up in stalag VIIA
    USAFA Stalag Luft III - The March
     
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  18. 8002reverse

    8002reverse Member

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    The journo's. claim that an American led Harry's digging team is a journo. being a journo., that's all. There was one American in the Northern compound who the Germans thought as a Canadian so they left him there. He didn't lead the digging team either.

    I'll be visiting the camp for the 5th time later this year. If anyone has any 'photos they'd like me to take etc., let me know.
     

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