• Escape from Stalag Luft III

    The great escape

    On 24 March 1944 over 200 men prepared to break out of Stalag Luft III, at Sagan in German-occupied Poland. They had taken nearly a year to dig their tunnels – nicknamed Tom, Dick and Harry. Seventy-six prisoners got away, but the Gestapo recaptured and murdered fifty, including five Australians. Of the 76 escapees, only three reached Allied lines. The Sagan escape was the largest planned breakout of Allied prisoners in the war. The attempt inspired the Paul Brickhill book, The Great Escape, and a film adaptation.

    AWm ART34781.12
    A. H. Comber
    Second World War enlisted Royal Australian Air Force
    It looked harmless enough until…
    pen and brush and ink over pencil on paper
    drawn in London in 1945
    acquired in 1945
    ART34781.012

    AWM ART34781.21
    A. H. Comber
    Second World War enlisted Royal Australian Air Force
    The tunnel was to come up in the woods…
    pen and brush and ink over pencil on paper
    drawn in London in 1945
    acquired in 1945
    ART34781.21

    AWM ART24781.14
    A. H. Comber
    Second World War enlisted Royal Australian Air Force
    The tunnel at Stalag Luft III: the foot of the shaft
    pen and brush and ink over pencil on paper
    drawn in London in 1945
    acquired in 1945
    ART34781.014

    AWM ART34781.16
    A. H. Comber
    Second World War enlisted Royal Australian Air Force
    Extending the tunnel at the working face
    pen and brush and ink on paper
    drawn in London in 1945
    acquired in 1945
    ART34781.16