South African POWs in Italy

Discussion in 'South African' started by Russelle, Jun 6, 2010.

  1. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Hi Paul,

    Here is the page with your Grandfather listed, it has him in Campo 57 as of August 1943, that was Gruppignano near Udine.

    Attached are the jpegs of his listing and the Camp lists.

    This is all I can really help you with.

    Steve.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Boere

    Boere Junior Member

    Hi Kevin,
    I went through the same trouble with my father.
    Go to the effort requesting the ICRC, it takes a while but the info you recieve makes it worth while. It took 12 months but eventually I receive a reply.
    Cheers Willi
     
  3. T Reid

    T Reid Junior Member

    Hi Kevin,

    I cannot add anymore detail to what Brian has stated. You are more than welcome to a jpeg of his entry in WO392.

    Just pm me and we will sort it.

    Bamboo.

    Dear Bamboo, I don't think I am using this correctly - my first time on this site. Are you able to find any info for me on my father Daniel lawrence Commins, South African Infantry. He was interned at Monte Casino and then in Germany. Any help much appreciated.
     
  4. BBCLEE

    BBCLEE Junior Member

    Hi - I'm new to WW2 Talk . Perhaps you can help if you access to a list of S African POWs at Kew ? I am trying to locate names of South African servicemen whose names are signed on a khaki handkerchief found in my late father's possessions.

    I have attached some photos of the handkerchief.

    He was a British POW at PG82 Laterina at Italy after being captured in Feb 1943 at the Battle of Sidi Nsir in Tunisia.
    My father was Corporal Ralph Desty served with the 5th battalion of the Royal Hampshire Regiment.

    The South African names are ( as close as I can make out ):
    Martin de Fontaine
    H Joo Berg ?
    Gert Bischoff
    Horatio Goold
    Francois Joubert
    David Smith
    Mathew De Beer
    Norman Heslop
    Mike Berman
    L Kaaltze
    Maurice Gillperey
    J E Pleyar


    The other names on the handkerchief I assume are also British POWs:
    Reginald Stange
    Ted Stone
    A Allinson
    Ginger Gallagher
    B Gradwell
    M Larson
    W B Wilson
    R L Street
    J.C Lewis
    A Solweto

    Any help would be great - I'd love to solve a mystery of many decades.

    Lee
     

    Attached Files:

  5. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Dear Bamboo, I don't think I am using this correctly - my first time on this site. Are you able to find any info for me on my father Daniel lawrence Commins, South African Infantry. He was interned at Monte Casino and then in Germany. Any help much appreciated.


    Here you go, he was in Camp 66 in August 1943. Jpeg attached.

    Steve.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Hi Lee,

    I will try and help. I have the file WO392/21, POW's to the Italians as of August 1943.

    I will attach the pages for each man you list, starting with the South Africans.

    On this first post the list confirms: Defontaine and M. Berman. The others like De Beer, Bischoff and Berg, well there are many options listed.

    Steve.
     

    Attached Files:

  7. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    South Africans 2. Covering names G-K. Heslop N. looks to be present, the others inconclusive.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    South Africans 3 P-S. Well as you can imagine Smith D. well the world's you're oyster I'm afraid.

    Remember these are only POW's as of August 1943, the other's could have come or gone by then?
     

    Attached Files:

  9. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Lee,

    Here are the British POW's A-GA. Including you're father hopefully.:) The Camp numbers listed are the same as the South African list.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    British Gr-L. JC Lewis is confirmed, the others possibilities exist.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Lee,

    These are the final photos covering S-W. Some detective work needed, but at least now you have something to go on!!:)

    Hope all these have helped, there is plenty there to investigate that's for sure.

    Good luck.

    Steve.
     

    Attached Files:

  12. BBCLEE

    BBCLEE Junior Member

    Steve
    Thank your the fantastic assistance . I found my father's name in the British POWs. I also realsied that some of the handwriting has confused me - so now I think I have established one of the South Africans is S.D. Kooetze . I also think I know have an A.L Oliver in the British PoWs - is there a photo page for the British Pow K to P names ?
    Pretty sure the R Street is one of the Royal Hampshires my father was in and L B Wilson looks like East Surreys who I think were also at Sidi Nsir - the same battle my father was captured. (Only discovered recently Sidi Nsir had been given the same status as Little Big Horn in one military book called Famous Last Stands by Bryan Perrett.) Link to one account is here:
    Private Jonathan Wilkinson

    As you say lots more to investigate. I have been overwhelmed by your help and support - I really didn't think I would find anything of assistance this long after the event.
    Why did they all sign the handkerchief ? Well my father says this was done before an escape from Laterina. He said some the escapers were shot but he was lucky ...
    That's another part of the story I'd like to run to ground...
    There were some tough lads in the Royal Hampshires - territorials raised from ports cities like Southampton and Portsmouth - but my father said the South Africans were also very tough fighters who he admired greatly.
    Thanks again Steve.
    Lee
     
  13. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Glad to be of help, others on the forum may have greater knowledge of the camps and even the action you describe.

    Pages K-P, is there a particular name you have in mind?
     
  14. BBCLEE

    BBCLEE Junior Member

    Steve
    I think it's A.L Oliver or Oliveto or Olivero - I'm trying to work out the handwriting for the surname but the the intials are clear. It's in the British POW section.
    Thank you
    Lee
     
  15. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Hi Lee,

    Yep! Here he is, see attached.

    Cheers.

    Steve.
     

    Attached Files:

  16. T Reid

    T Reid Junior Member

    Dear Bamboo43, Thank you soooo much for this. What is this regiter that you have sent a photo of? How do I work out how to use this website???
     
  17. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Dear Bamboo43, Thank you soooo much for this. What is this regiter that you have sent a photo of? How do I work out how to use this website???


    Hi T Reid,

    It is from the register of POW's held by the Italians as of August 1943. The file reference is WO392/21 and the document is held at the National Archives, Kew, London.

    The listing is not online I'm afraid, I was given a copy by a friend whilst at the archives a couple of years ago.

    Steve.
     
  18. Cunnama

    Cunnama Junior Member

    Hi all,

    I see this is a bit of an old thread.

    I am busy looking for information on various South African POW's captured in Tobruk and taken to Italian POW camps. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

    Dennis Patrick Cunnama, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - My Grandfather
    Dennis Mack, unknown - My Grandmothers 2nd husband
    Allan Courtney Swales, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - My Grandmothers first husband
    Gerhardus Thomas Van der Walt, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - DP Cunnama's best friend.

    Kind Regards,
    Daniel
     
  19. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    Hi Daniel,

    I am currently at work, but when I get home, I will look these gentlemen up in the WO392/21 file, which is held at the British National Archives. These lists are supposed to give the POW Camp location of prisoners as of August 1943.

    Hopefully, it will have some information to give you a start at least? Others may be able to help you further.

    Steve
     
  20. ADM199

    ADM199 Well-Known Member

    The best place to look for full explanation would be at The National Archives .

    What I will quote are the Rank and Service Nos.

    Pte D P Cunnama 1559 --- Sgt D E Mack 51242 -- Pte A C Swales SAP/195629 -- Pte G T Van der Walt 5258.

    With Pte Swales Service No doubt if he was U.M.R.

    Perhaps the only other place to look for an explanation would be The South African Museum of Military History.

    Even what I have posted is liable to be corrupt. You should read my post on POW Lists for a full explanation.


    Hi all,

    I see this is a bit of an old thread.

    I am busy looking for information on various South African POW's captured in Tobruk and taken to Italian POW camps. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

    Dennis Patrick Cunnama, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - My Grandfather
    Dennis Mack, unknown - My Grandmothers 2nd husband
    Allan Courtney Swales, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - My Grandmothers first husband
    Gerhardus Thomas Van der Walt, Umvoti Mounted Rifles - DP Cunnama's best friend.

    Kind Regards,
    Daniel
     
    C van der Walt likes this.

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