Stalag IV

I hesitated a little before posting this as there is very little Irish connection – but it’s really fascinating so I will anyway.
The BBC report on a fantastic addition to the National Library’s on-line collection.
Cymro – 7 issues of the magazine ‘Cymro’, created by Welsh prisoners of war during the Second World War. These prisoners were members of the ‘Cymric Club’ in the Stalag IVB camp near Mühlberg, Germany. The magazines were produced between July 1943 and December 1944. Handwritten on paper stuck together with soup, copies would be passed from hand to hand. Some wonderful snippets below the fold:

News from home – as Europe and the world suffer masive conflagration what’s the news from home?:
“In the little village of Rhosytryfan, Caernarvonshire, a dispute the two local deacons developed into a fight after the church service on Sunday evening. Now one of the families goes to another chapel.”
Sports Star – Mostyn Thomas gets his double cap, Rugby against England and soccer against Ireland.
Sioni Wynwns – I remember the Breton onion sellers when I was a kid.
Springboks beat us! (fascinating little paragraph on Lord Davies of Llandinam bottom right – a family with a little history)
I’ve been scrolling through all morning – fabulous stuff. Any similar stuff from Irish prisoners?

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Dewi,

    we (the plain Nationalist people of Ireland) dont talk as fondly of the ’emergency’ and are not as proud of our contribution as your goodselves.

    But it is a really interesting collection and the concept of one Welsh national identity being kept alive within the broader British national cause is at first thought (to me) quite suprising. Couldnt see anything in Welsh?

    Interesting though if the Irish Unionists celebrated the 12th etc – perhaps some ‘provcative marches’ from Stalag 1690 past Stalag 1916? and the odd bit of Stalag grafitti FTP, FTQ.

  • Dewi

    Sammy a couple of pages in Welsh –
    There’s one
    “Interesting though if the Irish Unionists celebrated the 12th etc” – Right – I was looking for something to for the next hour…watch this space.

  • Dewi

    Funny – “The Bavarian Orange Order was officially outlawed by the Nazi regime in June 1940”

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    excellent having a Weslh page autored by emyrs w evans ? what do we know of this chappie?

    re. B.O.L.
    Bavaria was probably not the best location to marching about saying the pope was anti-christ.

    Of course Hitler, although a mass-murdering-madman, didnt get everything wrong.

  • Dewi

    I think it’s a joke Sammy – I was taken in but at the end he says :

    “This year’s main demonstration will be held in Oberammergau, a small village in the Bavarian Alps. This town was chosen because it is 100% RC apart from the Ali family who own the local kebab shop. Organisers are hoping for a smooth and uneventful parade this year, but it is doubtful that this will happen. An Oberammergau Residents’ Committee has been formed by Bernhard von McIlliskey (who actually lives in Regensbug) and it is suspected that he and his associates will try to disrupt the parade.”

  • Dewi

    “The Landsberg Lynch the Lundies Loyalist Volunteer Flute Band”

    Anybody know The Ulsterman in Bavaria? He’s a funny bloke.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Dewi,

    off on a bit of a tangent – but does the Library sell any of its documents as posters – or allow them offically to be used as such on a commercial/private basis?

  • Dewi

    I’ll find out Sammy.

  • OC

    Great stuff, Dewi!

    One of the issues was saying that Breton was similiar to Welsh.

    I spoken to native speakers of both, and they said that the two languages are unintelligable.

    Although Maggie might argue that Breton is merely a dialect of Welsh.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Dewi,

    ta but.

  • Dewi

    “I spoken to native speakers of both, and they said that the two languages are unintelligable”

    Yep – closer to Cornish than Welsh – mass emmigration after the defeat of Dumnonia in about 577 AD means that the languages developed seperately. I can just about read it but don’t understand it spoken at all.

  • Freddie

    Why does JRR Tolkien not get a namecheck here, surely he wrote at least some of this sh………….

  • Dewi

    Was Tolkien in Stalag 1V?