Opened November 1939.
Coordinates 53.10°N 15.27°E
The camp was founded in 1939, by the 3rd Battalion barracks German motorized infantry regiment & 25th and 3rd Squadron - two motorized artillery regiments. Infrastructure of the camp consisted of four two-storey blocks, a gymnasium, two administrative buildings, four garages, and a large parade ground. The area was fenced with barbed double fence height. 2.5 m and a width of 1.5 m
Named Arnswalde II B, which meant, Arnswalde - the name of the town where the camp was situated - Choszczno , II - the number of the military district in this case, Stettin ( Pomerania , Mecklenburg ), B - the sequence of the camp in the district - the second. The first transport numbering 2254 POWs (1618 officers and 636 other ranks) arrived at the camp on 6th November 1939.
The prisoners came from the Polish Army Krakow, SGO Polesie and the defenders of the coast. November 21st brought hundreds of wounded prisoners from the field hospitals. The next larger transport (1067 prisoners) arrived on December 7th, 1939 also from Stargard, Oflag II-d.
French officers were also brought to this camp after the defeat of France in 1940.
The commandants of the camp:
6 November 1939 - 20 December 1940 – Colonel Joachim von Loebecke
20 December 1940 - April 1941 - Major von Stietencron
April 1941- late 1942 - Colonel von Muller
Senior Allied officers:
November 6, 1939 to 19th December 1940 - Colonel Rudolf Kalenski
20th December 1940 -28 September 1941 - Colonel Wojciech Tyczynski
September 28 1941- late 1942 - Colonel Witold Dzierzykraj-Moravian
Prisoners lived in the soldiers barracks, equipped with 1-2 tables and a few stools, cupboards (one for two people) & mattresses.
Beds were for officers, elderly and the sick.
POWs received: one blanket, a towel, a cup, a spoon and a piece of soap.
On each floor there were toilets and sinks with running cold water but no baths.
The lighting was poor, and heating didn’t function.
Bathing was provided once a month outside the camp.
In the camp there were eight medical officers, the seriously ill were treated in the prison hospital in Stargard. Food was very scarce and below starvation rations.
The officers received monthly wages paid in the so-called ‘lagergeld’ corresponding to the value of brands circulation. Size salary was dependent of your military rank and was for Colonel 150 (eg, Brigadier 180), Col. 120, Major 108, Captain 98, Lt. 81, Lieutenant 72.
Part of the wages earned was transferred to a Mutual Fund . The Fund's operations include assistance to widows and orphans of fallen colleagues in the country, the fees for the lawyers defending prisoners before German courts, the payment of salaries of the cadets and soldiers, as well as cultural and educational activities.
On 14th May 1942 all Polish POWs were transferred to Oflag II D Gross Born, where prisoners were all French.
The first group of French prisoners of war were brought to Choszczna just after the fall of France in June 1940, The senior officer being Colonel Gonnard. The French stay was relatively short.
From the 15th of August 1940 there were 356 officers and 140 other ranks.
On November 8th 1940 all French were then transported to Oflag IIa in Prenzlau, however later in 1942 the camp became almost all French with transfers from other officers camps.
1942 - 2396 officers and 408 other ranks
Up until October 1943 - 2459 officers and 302 other ranks
1 October 1943 - 2561 officers and 292 other ranks
1944 -2526 Officers and 285 other ranks
1945 -2549 Officers and 291 other ranks
As usual with Oflags –the ‘other ranks’ were there mainly for use as orderlies to the officers.
A command was issued to march from the camp westwards on the night 28/29 of January 1945 in advance of the Russians.
The camp was divided into three groups of 900. Some took the opportunity to escape at this point.
The march lasted until February 25th and ended up in the town of Waren where they were liberated by the Russians soon after.
Reports from SHAEF dated February 1945 showed 1 Belgian, 1 Yugoslav and 2870 French were held.
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