16.04.

1945: The Elite Nazi Camp for Enemy Generals and British Lords

1945: The Elite Nazi Camp for Enemy Generals and British Lords
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 16 April 1945
  • The camp was located in Colditz Castle in Saxony, roughly between Dresden and Leipzig, on a steep cliff overlooking a river.

On this day the American troops occupied what was probably the most “elite” Nazi prisoner-of-war camp in Germany.

The camp was called Oflag IV-C, where the Oflag is the abbreviation for Offizierslager (officer camp). The camp was located in Colditz Castle in Saxony, roughly between Dresden and Leipzig. The castle is situated on a steep cliff overlooking the river, a place that was fortified back in the early Middle Ages.

It is interesting that the Germans kept important prisoners in that camp, such as the relatives of foreign dignitaries. The Germans called these VIP prisoners “die Prominenten”.

For example, Lord Lascelles and Lord Elphinstone (cousins of the British king and queen) were detained there. Giles Romilly (nephew of the wife of Winston Churchill) as kept well was there.

In addition, a series of Allied generals were imprisoned in Colditz Castle, for example six French generals and five generals of the Polish army. Indeed, the Germans  also locked up the Dominican priest Yves Congar in the camp. He became a renowned theologian and cardinal after the war.

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