Diary of George William Edward Clark, January 1942 - January 1943

Places
Accession Number AWM2019.22.83
Collection number PR01035
Collection type Digitised Collection
Record type Item
Item count 1
Object type Diary
Physical description 94 Image/s captured
Maker Clark, George William Edward
Place made Austria, Germany
Date made 1942-1943
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945
Copying Provisions Attached digital images and content are protected by copyright. They are reproduced here for research and study only. If you wish to use or quote from these images, please contact the Memorial’s Research Centre via info@awm.gov.au or 02 6243 4315.
Source credit to This item has been digitised with funding provided by Commonwealth Government.
Description

Collection relating to the Second World War service of NX1058 Gunner George William Edward Clark, 1 Battery, 2/1 Field Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery, 1940-1988.

In the third of five diaries, Clark documents his ongoing internment as a prisoner of war in Austria and Germany. He opens the diary by recalling an incident on New Year's Eve where "The mob were marching round with band instruments last night at 12 and Jerry thought there was a riot on and stopped it." He goes on to document camp routines at Stalag XVIII-A in Wolfsberg, paying close attention to rations and Red Cross parcels. He makes regular references to cold weather and the tribulations of being interned during winter, a range of recreational activities, news reports and rumours amongst the prisoners. He also remarks on unusual events observed both in camp and Wolfsberg including German guards removing boots from French prisoners due to leather shortages, the Gestapo checking Red Cross parcels and a Hitler youth sports meeting.

In late July 1942 Clark covers his transfer to Stalag XVIII-B at Spittal an der Drau. He describes his new surroundings and the ongoing challenges of dealing with usual camp routines. During this period of internment, he also remarks on several prisoner escapes and subsequent security measures adopted by camp officials. In mid-September, he documents his transfer to Oflag III-C (renamed Stalag 383 in 1943) at Hohenfels in southern Germany. He outlines conditions at this large camp, and writes about the arrival, composition and treatment of prisoners including the use of restraints such as handcuffs and chains. Closing diary entries largely focus on rations and Red Cross parcels, cold weather and a Christmas period featuring concerts, carolling and sports.

Three prison camp coupons issued at Stalag XVIII have also been deposited in the diary.