Thursday, October 25, 2012

Researching PoW Camps

I have noticed an increased number of posts for people searching for information about PoWs camps in Manitoba so I thought I should address this.

If you are looking for information about an individual or about a camp, please get in touch with me! A very small percentage of my research has been posted online so if you are looking for additional information, please post a comment below or send me an e-mail (link to the right) and I will do what I can to answer your questions.

Most of the searches seem to be about the PoW camp in Mafeking, Manitoba and I do have records of the camp. For the most part, the story of the Mafeking camp remains untold, as does the story of the PoWs in Pine Falls, Manitoba. As relatively few records have survived, there isn't much of a historical record. Though if you have any questions, again please get in touch, I am more than happy to help!

For those interested in prisoners of war or guards at these camps, let me know and I will see what information I can provide. If anyone knows of any guards or PoWs that were at any camps, I would very much like to hear from you!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

New Acquisition

Taking a slight detour from my usual postings, I wanted to show one of my most recent acquisitions in my collection. I recently attended an auction here in London where I was very fortunate to be able to purchase a set of World War One and interwar medals, identified to an Lt. Col. H.N. Streight.

Lt. Col. (later Colonel) Harvey Newton Streight was born in Kemptville, Ontario in 1887. In 1904, he came to Winnipeg and later enlisted with the Royal Winnipeg Rifles in World War One. Eventually achieving the rank of Lieutenant, Streight began a career in law. He also served as the president of the Manitoba Conservative Party from 1934 to 1938. Remaining in the militia in the inter-war years, Streight progressed to the rank of Colonel. In 1931, while with the 10th Battalion Canadian Machine Gun Corps in Winnipeg, Streight was awarded the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal (medal on the right) for twenty years of service (service during WWI counted as double).

When World War II broke out, he briefly served as the Commanding Officer of the Winnipeg Grenadiers but, in 1940, he joined the regular force and was posted as the District Judge Advocate General for Military District 10. However, in 1941, Streight was appointed the Director of Prisoners of War in Canada. Responsible for all internment operations in Canada, Streight was kept very active in these years, maintaining correspondence with all internment affairs, including those in Manitoba. He remained at this post until his retirement in 1945.

Streight passed away on June 2, 1960 and is buried in Winnipeg.

Needless to say, I am very pleased to have this medal grouping in my collection and it will certainly form one of the centerpieces of my Prisoner of War Collection!