Private William Edgar George
Unit : 1st Battalion The Border Regiment
Army No. : 3860349
Private George was taken prisoner in Sicily. The following is the Prisoner of War Questionnaire he filled in on his repatriation. My thanks to Bob Hilton for supplying a copy.
General Questionnaire for British/American Ex-Prisoners of War.
1. No. 3860349 RANK Pte SURNAME George CHRISTIAN NAMES William Edgar DECORATIONS
2. SHIP (R.N., U.S.N. or MERCHANT NAVY UNIT (ARMY) 1st Batt Border Regt. Airborne Forces SQUADRON (R.A.F. or A.A.F.)
3. DIVISION (ARMY), COMMAND (R.A.F. or A.A.F.)
4. DATE OF BIRTH 6.2.20
5. DATE OF ENLISTMENT 16.5.40
6. CIVILIAN TRADE OR PROFESSION (OR EXAMINATIONS PASSED WHILE P/W) L.M.S. Rly Worker
7. PRIVATE ADDRESS 12 Tulip Ave, Farnworth, Bolton, Lancashire, England
8. PLACE AND DATE OF ORIGINAL CAPTURE Sicily 10.7.43
9. WERE YOU WOUNDED WHEN CAPTURED? No
10. MAIN CAMPS OR HOSPITALS IN WHICH IMPRISONED.
Sub Lager Spittal
11. WERE YOU IN A WORKING CAMP?
Nature of Work
12. DID YOU SUFFER FROM ANY SERIOUS ILLNESSES WHILE A P/W?
Nature of Illness
Would in right leg
With an axe
(b) DID YOU RECEIVE ADEQUATE MEDICAL TREATMENT? Yes
GENERAL QUESTIONNAIRE PART II. TOP SECRET.
1. No. 3860349 RANK Pte SURNAME George CHRISTIAN NAMES William Edgar
2. LECTURES before Capture:
(a) Were you lectured in your unit on how to behave in the event of capture? (State where, when and by whom). My platoon commander said a few words on how to behave a few hours before capture, when where in the sea, sitting on our glider just off Sicily.
(b) Were you lectured on escape and evasion? (State where, when and by whom). -.
3. INTERROGATION after capture:
Were you interrogated by the enemy? (State where, when and methods employed by enemy). We only had our pay books taken from us by the Italians, and asked where we came from. This was in Augusta Sicily.
4. ESCAPES attempted:
Did you make any attempted or partly successful escapes? (Give details of each attempt separately, stating where, when, method employed, names of your companions, where and when recaptured and by whom. Were you physically fit? What happened to your companions?) On the 1.4.45 I and my comrade Pte J. Judge 3715467 (K.O.R.R.) left the working lager Attendorf as if proceeding to work and took to the woods and hills & hid with civilians. Later on the 10th of May1945 we handed over to the 8th Army.
Did you do any sabotage or destruction of enemy factory plant, war material, communications, etc., when employed on working-parties or during escape? (Give details, places and dates.) No.
6. COLLABORATION with enemy:
Do you know of any British or American personnel who collaborated with the enemy or in any way helped the enemy against other Allied Prisoners of War? (Give details, names of person(s) concerned, camp(s), dates and nature of collaboration or help given to enemy). No
7. WAR CRIMES:
If you have any information or evidence of bad treatment by the enemy to yourself or to others, or knowledge of any enemy violation of the Geneva Convention you should ask for a copy of "Form Q" on which to make your statement: (NOTE: Form Q is a separate form inviting information on "War Crimes" and describes the kind of offences coming under this title.)
8. Have you any other matter of any kind you wish to bring to notice? After I and my comrade J. Judge 3715467 (K.O.R.R.) had been in the woods two days my comrade was very ill. So I took him to my last place of employment and there the farmer did everything to help us, but we had to leave him shortly after because a Frenchman (P.O.W. turned civilian) through [spelling mistake as printed] us out, and said he would have nothing to do with Englishmen, it was too dangerous.
On the first of April 1945, I and my comrade went into the woods instead of going to our farms, hoping that we would soon be freed with the Russians. But as they never came we spent six weeks on different farms. Then we got news of our troops. The 8th Army being only 28 kilometres away so we made our way to them to Koflach on the 10.5.45. From there we was taken to Wolfsberg the same day, where we spent two days. On the 12.5.45 we left for Klagenfurt. We spent one night there then we went by air 14 May 45 to Kesina Italy. "B" No.2 Allied PW Report Camp.
I fully realise that all information relating to the matters covered by the questions in Part II are of a highly secret and official nature. I have had explained to me and fully understand that under Defence Regulations or U.S.A.R. 380-5 I am forbidden to publish or communicate any information concerning these matters.
Date 17-5-45 Signature [Signed W.E. George]
1. Number 3860349 Rank Pte Name (BLOCKS) William E. George Initials W.E. Unit 1st Batt Border Regt. Air Borne Forces. Private Address 12 Tulip Ave, Farnworth, Bolton, Lancashire, England.
2. If you personally witnessed the death, wounding or serious illness of any other PW since the Armistice of SEPTEMBER 1943, please write below whatever details you can. If you know any information of this sort from some other reliable source (e.g. the Partisan leader in your area), put this down as well, giving as many particulars as you can of your informant and witnesses. If you do not know the full particulars of the PW concerned - i.e. his full name, unit, and last PW Camp - then give as many of these as you can, and any other details which may establish his identity, e.g. home town or personal description. If you know his Regtl No, give that too. In the case of death, state place of burial and how the grave is marked, if known. Nil.
APPENDIX "A" GENERAL QUESTIONNAIRE. PART III.
Number 3860349 Rank Pte Surname and Initials George W.E. Unit 1st Batt Border Regt Airborne Forces
Give such names and addresses as you can remember of those persons who helped you during your escape journey(s), with the approximate dates of their help to you and to your companions (if any), a very brief summary of service rendered, amount of money or approximate value of clothing supplied (list of items of clothing and footgear to be stated if possible) and degree of risk incurred.
If you cannot remembered the names of your individual helpers, state the place where you received help, and what details you can about such help. State also if you or your companions did or did not leave "chits" with each helper, acknowledging assistance given by him, or her, or did these "chits" take the form merely of your name and home address? A specimen of what is required is given below. [Note: To avoid confusion with Private George's reply, these examples have been omitted.]
Dates and period of help. From 3.4.45 10.4.45
Name and address of helper (put Christian name FIRST and give Province if possible). Frau and Herr Kirkmeyer, Attendorf Berg (44), Graz, Austria.
Type of Help given. Clothing and Food. [The following more detailed reply was given but crossed out in favour of the summary] On the 3rd of April 1945 I return from the woods to Frau and Herr Kirkmeyer Attendorfberg (44) Graz and there my comrade and I received the best of food and clothing if we wanted to take it.
Dates and period of help. From 10.4.45 10.5.45
Name and address of helper (put Christian name FIRST and give Province if possible). Frau Spüller Attendorf Berg (2), Graz, Austria.
Type of Help given. This woman and her husband kept me fed, until I went to the 8th Army, at very great risk.
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