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Burma POW Camp Info?

Article about: Photos are of what has been passed down to me as the shaving kit my grandfather used while in a Burma Prison Camp during WWII. He scratched some camp (KAMP) information on the back of the ki

  1. #1

    Default Burma POW Camp Info?

    Photos are of what has been passed down to me as the shaving kit my grandfather used while in a Burma Prison Camp during WWII. He scratched some camp (KAMP) information on the back of the kit. If anyone has any idea what any of this might mean, please let me know.

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    Line by line the markings appear to read as follows:

    CH.J.Spiessens (my grandfathers name is Christian)
    STB No 113113
    1E CONC.KAMP
    T.M.I.
    JULI 1942

    It is only an assumption that this was scratched in the bottom of the shaving kit, while my grandfather was in prison camp, as this is what has been told to me. Nobody in my family has any information as to exactly what camp he was in etc other than I have been told he worked on the railway while being held in a Burma camp.

    My grandfather was 27 when he joined the Royal Neth.Ind.Army, my mom believes that he was drafted. He was mobilized in Nov 10 1941 and was placed in prison camp after the surrendar of the Army at Java, he was a Prvt at the time. I have a document of his, written by the Ministry for Union Affairs that indicates he was held in Japanese camps at Tjimahi, Rangoon, Moulmian, Thanbuazayat, Burma, Siam but is not specific to which camp or camps exactly he was held, my mom just tells me Burma prison camps.

    As for the shaving kit, I am told this is what my grandfather used, while in the prison camp although I find it hard to belive they allowed the prisoners to have razor blades??? The case and the cover are a mixed match, the cover possibly even made by my grandfather. The contents do not fit correctly as well so I'm guessing this is just a case that my grandfather scounged up someplace. The actuall razor is a Gillette, Made in England but I doubt that has any significants to the markings.

    Any input to what the markings might mean would be greatly appreciated.

    Russ & Son

  2. #2

    Default Re: Burma POW Camp Info?

    Hello Russ,

    Thanks for the pics. I'll ask around about the details of your grandfathers whereabouts in WW2. He would have been called Christiaan in Dutch, with two a's.

    Cheers,
    Emile

  3. #3

    Default Re: Burma POW Camp Info?

    [QUOTE=MySonsDad;234804]Photos are of what has been passed down to me as the shaving kit my grandfather used while in a Burma Prison Camp during WWII. He scratched some camp (KAMP) information on the back of the kit. If anyone has any idea what any of this might mean, please let me know.
    Line by line the markings appear to read as follows:

    CH.J.Spiessens (my grandfathers name is Christian)
    STB No 113113 = Military Serial number(Stamboek Nummer)
    1E CONC.KAMP = 1ste Concentratie Kamp
    In Tjimahi there were 6 camps:
    The huge military encampments of the two garrison battalions in Tjimahi (4th and 9th battalion) from March 1942 to February 1944 were used as a prisoner of war camps and then to the end of the war (August 1945) as a civilian camp for older boys and men (as of March 1944 called bunsho II, Camp 4). The more than 10,000 prisoner of war were transported to Batavia in June 1944. In the civilian camps there were more than 12,000 people. Many men came from so called 'interim camps' in the Bandung area.
    "Bergartillerie camp" Mobile Artillery (south east of Camp 4) that from March 1942 until January 1943 served as a POW camp. Number of prisoners, about 1000.
    The Train Encampment of Tjimahi was April 1942-October 1942 POW camp, from November-December 1942 camp for women and children from the area. Number of prisoners, about 2000.
    Military hospital; camp hospital for soldiers and civilians (August 1942 - April 1945)
    Encampment "sixth depot Battalion" (Camp Baros). This camp was from April to October 1942 a POW camp and then from October 1943 until the end of the war served as a civilian camp for men and older boys, also Dutch public figures from government and companies in Java, Jewish men and Masons were interned there. From March 1944 it was called Camp bunsho II. Prisoner of war: over 5000 ond more than 3000 citizens.
    "Mobile artillery depot" was a"Boy's Camp". This camp was successively a POW camp (April-July 1942), a women's camp (December 1942-August 1944), boys camp (July 1944-April 1945) and boys' camp plus hospital (April-August 1945). From March 1944 the camp was called Camp 6 bunsho II. Total number of inmates around 1600.
    Finally they added two small camps at Tjimahi which were farms: Zonnehoeve at Tjimindo and Vredestijn at Leuwigadjah. There were daily chore services that visited the camps . There was also a railway camp "Tjitjalengka" where prisoners from Tjimahi were brought to work on the railroad. This was never completed. After the capitulation of Japan, the encampments of Tjimahi were being used until June 1946 as refugee camp for the protection and evacuation of Japanese, British and Dutch soldiers.

    T.M.I. = I think this might be the abbreviation for Tjimahi
    JULI 1942 = the bulding of the Burma railroad began in June 1942.(July 1942 might be the date he arrived at the camp?)
    I hope it will help you further in your research

    Grtz Steven

  4. #4

    Default Re: Burma POW Camp Info?

    Yes Emile, although I have never seen how it was spelled, my grandfather's name was a slightly different pronouciation than our adopted "Christian" my mom pronouncing the end of my grandfathers name with a long "e" and short "a" and an "n". My middles name is taken from my grandfather but was given to me with the english spelling and pronounciation, as I passed down to my son as his first name.


    Grtz, thank you so much for the information, I am adding to a file of information I have gathered on my grandfather, hopefully, someday I'll have the complete story to pass down to the family!

    Regards,

    Russ

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