Thursday, July 28, 2011

Florence: POW Camp


Just north of Florence was located a huge prisoner of war camp for German and Italian detainees seized during the North Africa movement and called, “Camp Florence”.  This World War II site was built in 1942-43 and is the biggest prisoner of war complex ever built on American land.  Thousands of POW’s were held in this 5 acre compound which had a barracks, a hospital, a bakery, a swimming pool, athletic fields, and a few theaters.  The men even earned money by performing different tasks within the camp.
Camp Florence had around 13,000 prisoners by December of 1945.  In 1946 it was deemed a "surplus" and in 1948 it became a state hospital and incarceration center for first time criminals.  They moved most of the POW quarters to Queen Creek, AZ and used them for elementary schoolrooms.  Today it stands as a location for the Florence Public Health Service Clinic, serving the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).







6 comments:

  1. Places like this give me the creepers! :D O_o'
    Following! :)

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  2. Wow! I had heard about these places, but I never knew where they were. Great Post!

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  3. These POW stories were very interesting.

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  4. That always drives me nuts in museums--you see me pressing my haneds to the glass, wanting to touch the objects sooooo much!

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  5. Never knew of it's existence, thanks for that.

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