Stalag 4B Id tag 227987, Pte T Tunney, click to enlarge

Information on each soldier is arranged as follows, reading from left to right,
POW Number, Stalag in early 1945, name, Army number and regiment, other known details

German POW numbers 000001-156200 assigned to Durham Light Infantry POWs, index page and general introduction

British POW numbers circa 220000 (mostly complete) Page Jump to circa 222001

Page jump to POWs circa 222400 (RAF NCOs, many gaps) POWs circa 223000 POWs circa 224000

Page jump to POWs circa 225000 POWs circa 226000 POWs circa 227000 (most gaps now filled)

Page jump to POWs circa 228000 (most gaps filled) POWs circa 247000 (many gaps)

Page jump to POWs circa 250000 (very many gaps) POWs circa 262000 (many gaps)

Page jump to POWs circa 267000 to 294000 (very many gaps)


The German POW numbers in the 220000-253000 range listed consecutively on the following pages were all assigned between July and early October 1943, mainly to British Army POWs transferred to Germany from camps in Italy. Most of the the men in the 226000--228000 sequence seem to have come from Camp PG 53 in Italy. See the Cattle Truck to Stalag 4B page for an eyewitness account. German POW trains carried around 2,000 men, 40-50 men to each truck, so it is easy to envisage how these numbers must have been assigned in similarly-sized block groups. The German system was ingenious in that it required only the bare minimum of administrative skills on the part of the camp staff, who were mostly Russian POWs: the men simply queued up in no particular order, received their numbers, which were then stamped out on metal tags, had their heads shaved and then their photographs taken holding a small chalk board with the new number written on it. They were then officially POWs. However, almost 80 years on, that also means that there are no shortcuts in determining who was exactly with who during this process.

This unfinished consecutive listing has been very laboriously compiled from the 1945 War Office registers of British POWs in Germany. That listing arranges Other Ranks POWs alphabetically by surname and within that arrangement by Army Number. The advantage of this new listing by POW number is that, once all the gaps are filled, it establishes exactly who each POW was with on the day his German POW number was issued. For example, Pte T Tunney's German POW number, as seen at right on his original German id tag (click on it for an enlargement), was 227987. His friend and 'mucker' in Italy, Gnr Joe Washington, had the number 227988 and many of their future POW colleagues at the Bad Schmiedeberg work camp, who are featured in the photo at right (click on it for an enlargement and a detailed caption) had numbers in the same range. Further information on any of the soldiers listed below gratefully received. Click to enlarge the stalag map above right for the locations of the camps.

I will be adding further numbers to each side of the listing--and filling the many gaps--as time permits. From looking at the numbers and known details of Durham Light Infantry Tunisia POWs, it seems that POW numbers in the 220000 to 222000 were also assigned at Stalag 4B to British Army Other Ranks arriving from Italy. This sequence from 220000 to 222000 includes a large number of men who were subsequently assigned to work camps of Stalag 8B at Lamsdorf, including Camp E 715 Monowitz, which was very near to the Auschwitz death camp. The sequence from around 222400 is then interrupted by a large batch of RAF aircrew downed over northern Europe, before continuing with more Army Other Ranks from Italy, Camps PG 82 and PG 53. Around 228200, there is a batch of Army officers from Italy, then more Other Ranks, a large gap betweeen 229000 and 243000 and then a further batch of RAF NCOs at around. 259000, and then more Army men, with further major gaps, presumably filled by Commonwealth POWs. I have only included a sampling of numbers after 228400 and have concentrated on DLI men. For more on these DLI POWs, see the Army Numbers section of the site. Those POWs with numbers around 250000--253000 seem to have come from Camp PG 70.

Numbers in the 154000 range were assigned to British POWs from Italy at Stalag 7A; and numbers in the 75000 range were assigned at Stalag 8C at this time, some to men from PG 47. Circa 80000 were assigned at Stalag 8A to men from Camp PG 82. Numbers circa 6000 at Stalag 18A, to men from PG 73 and 35000 for ex-Italy arrivals at Stalag 8B.This is clear from looking at known Sedjenane DLI POWs, all captured in March 1943, who went to these stalags from Italy. An unfinished listing of DLI POW numbers in these sequences begins on this page..

If the unit or camp associated with a particular name in the listing below refers to a photograph, then this has been posted elsewhere on the site: obviously thereís a strong possibility that any such group photo will also feature some of the other men with POW numbers near the soldierís name. One notable name and number Iíve added outside of the Army Other Ranks range is that of Australian pilot Flt Sgt Geoff Taylor who was assigned the Stalag 4B number 259915 after being shot down as a 207 Squadron Lancaster bomber pilot on 18/10/43. His 1955 book about his POW experiences at Stalag 4B, Piece of Cake, canít be recommended highly enough to anyone with an interest in the camp. The cover, click for an enlargement and a brief review, is reproduced at right. Another book with a Stalag 4B connection that I also highly recommend is POW The Diary of a Prisoner of War by David Nell (Stalag 4B number 260449).

Piece of Cake, Geoff Taylor, 1957 cover, click to enlarge
Stalag 8C id tag 75509, of Pte Percy Wilson, 16 DLI, click to enlarge
index sitemap advanced
search engine by freefind