|Stalag VII A: Oral history
I: We Arrive at Stalag VII A
We Arrive at Stalag VII ABy Robert D. Reeves
When we finally detrained in mid-October, 1944, we were standing outside of what we were to learn was Stalag VII A at Moosburg, Germany - forty miles north of Munich. It was raining very hard. Our captors lined us up in rows of five (I was later to learn that the Germans could only count in multiples of five), and made us stand in the rain for hours. It was under these conditions I received my first beating. I was standing hunched-over in line with my hands in my pockets when a guard came up behind me, started hitting me very hard across my back with his bayonet scabbard, and repeatedly bellowed something in German. Later, others told me he had simply wanted me to straighten up and take my hands out of my pockets, but I had no way of knowing what he had been ordering me to do. All this, and I wasn't even inside the camp gates yet!
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