Camp Blanding - Starke, FL
N 29° 58.877 W 081° 59.054
17R E 405052 N 3317118
Quick Description: Camp Blanding, located in Starke, Florida, USA, was a German Prisoner of War Camp from 1942-1946. Today, Camp Blanding is the primary military reservation and training station for the Florida National Guard.
Location: Florida, United States
Date Posted: 5/10/2008 2:12:40 PM
Waymark Code: WM3RC9
: "During World War II, 378,000 Prisoners of War were incarcerated in the United States. Their odyssey took them from the deserts of northern Africa, the mountains of central Italy and the hedgerows of Normandy to POW Camps located in 45 states. In Florida, Camp Blanding was the main POW base where 4,000 prisoners were administered."
"At first, there were a number of enemy aliens who were confined in Camp Blanding only for a short time. As a POW Compound, it contained both a navy and army compound which could hold up to 1200 prisoners. There were also nearly 3,000 men incarcerated in eleven, later fifteen branch camps, and each holding about 250 to 300 men."
"The first group of fourteen U-Boat (submarine) arrived on September 24, 1942. The Camp Blanding navy compound was one of four in the United States. German army prisoners did not arrive until November 1943."
"Housing in the compounds consisted of simple wooden, sixteen feet by sixteen feet, victory type hutments and mess halls, similar to those that had been built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s."
"In 1944, several branch camps were established to provide POW labor for private industries whose own work forces had been depleted by the draft. The Geneva Convention allowed only privates to do such work, and they had to be supervised by their own non-commissioned officers."
"The United States Government realized 25 million dollars from the labor of German prisoners through its policy of paying them 80 cents a day in canteen checks while receiving payment at prevailing labor wage rates."
"When starting in 1946, the German prisoners were repatriated, the POW camp was closed. In later years, several of its sites were marked and are being maintained as Historical Sites. One of these sites is a small cemetery where seven POWs had been buried. Their remains were later exhumed and laid to rest in the Fort Benning, Georgia, National Military Cemetery."