1 Reply Latest reply on Sep 28, 2021 3:58 PM by Rachael Salyer

    Are there records for German POWs held in the USA during WWII?

    Joan Willenbrock Newbie

      I am trying to find a relative that was in a camp in the USA. Are there records for German POWs held in the USA during WWII?  How are these located? Thank you.

        • Re: Are there records for German POWs held in the USA during WWII?
          Rachael Salyer Pioneer

          Dear Ms. Willenbrock,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          There are a number of series related to enemy prisoners of war (POWs/PWs) during World War II, including German POWs, in the Records of the Office of the Provost Marshal General (Record Group 389) that may contain the information you are searching for. The series Subject Files, 1942-1946, for example, contains files related to many individual camps. You may use the “search within this series” feature to search for specific camps by name or location. We located 30 additional series related to German POWs in Record Group 389 that you might also be interested in. Please note that these records generally do not include extensive personal information about individual prisoners; rather, they contain records related to the administration and functions of the prisoner camps that may provide some context for your relative's detention. These records have not been digitized. You may contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) at archives2reference@nara.gov for access to and information about these and similar records. Please include as much information as possible in your inquiry, such as full name, name and/or location of POW camp, dates of interest, and so forth.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          Finally, the personnel records of World War II German prisoners of war were returned to Germany.  For access to these records, please write to the Bundesarchiv - Abteilung PA, Eichborndamm 179, 13403 Berlin, Germany. The email address is poststelle-pa@bundesarchiv.de.


          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your family research!