US ARMY DOCTOR EXAMINES HADAMAR SURVIVORS, 8 APRIL 1945; BRITISH AND COMMONWEALTH PRISONER OF WAR, SURVIVORS OF A FORCED MARCH FROM LAMSDORF TO GÖTTINGEN, 8 APRIL 1945 [Allocated Title]
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- Title: US ARMY DOCTOR EXAMINES HADAMAR SURVIVORS, 8 APRIL 1945; BRITISH AND COMMONWEALTH PRISONER OF WAR, SURVIVORS OF A FORCED MARCH FROM LAMSDORF TO GÖTTINGEN, 8 APRIL 1945 [Allocated Title]
- Film Number: A70 514-15
- Other titles: CONCENTRATION CAMP MATERIAL FOR ALLIED FILM PRODUCTIONS [Allocated Series Title]
- Summary: US Army Doctor Major Herman Bolker goes from ward to ward of the Hadamar Mental Asylum examining surviving patients. English and South African prisoners of war from British and Commonwealth units show their debilitated physical condition for the camera, after surviving a forced march, leaving Lamsdorf on 23 January 1945 and reaching Göttingen on 18 March 1945.
- Description: HADAMAR MURDER MILL [Dope sheet title] In the dark interior of a hospital ward a man moves near the light of the window and removes his nightshirt to be examined by US Army Doctor Major Herman Bolker. The beds in a women's ward are very close together and most are empty, a few women sit around in their day clothes but move away as the doctor comes to examine a woman in bed. The doctor goes round the wards removing his helmet before examining patients, and replacing it afterwards. They are emaciated and one woman has been forcibly sterilised because her babies' father was Polish. EX-BRITISH POWS [Amended Dope sheet title] British and Commonwealth prisoners of war who have arrived at Göttingen and been liberated. They are filmed on 8 April 1945 in a schoolhouse to show their emaciated and debilitated condition after a gruelling forced march to the west from Lamsdorf in the east as the Russian advance moved towards central Germany. Lance Corporal Philip Stafford of the South African Irish Regiment, from Krugersdorp, Transvaal, South Africa, shows his thin legs. Sergeant Richard Osler of the Royal West Kent Regiment, from Richmond, Surrey, who was captured in Albert, France on 20 May 1940, shows his arm; his weight has dropped from one hundred and sixty to one hundred pounds. Private Albert L Strudwick of the Royal West Kent Regiment, from Lingfield, Surrey, is shown head and shoulders, his weight has dropped from one hundred and forty to eighty pounds in his five years of imprisonment. Corporal James Henry Glidden of the 1st Kings Own Regiment, from Tresparrett Posts, North Cornwall, is very weak and is seen in bed. Private George Court of the Pioneer Corps from Thorverton, Devon, has been a prisoner for six years, his thin body shows his weight loss from one hundred and forty to seventy-five pounds. Corporal Daniel Van Ransberg of the South African Field Force Battalion from Machadorp, Transvaal, South Africa, was captured at the battle of Gazala, North Africa, in 1942 weighing one hundred and forty pounds and now weighs one hundred. Leading Signalman Charles Greenhill of the Royal Navy, from Coventry, was attached to the Commandos and captured at the Dieppe raid on 19 August 1942. He shows a photograph of his wife and three daughters. The daily rations of bread, soup and fish cheese (?) is shown on a table.
- Access Conditions:
- Featured Period: 1939-1945
- Production Date: 1945-04-08
- Production Country: United States of America
- Production Details: Army Pictorial Service (Production sponsor) United States Army Signal Corps (Production company) Moscow, John W (Production individual) Wedderburn, Alexander J (1st Lieutenant) (Production individual) Lambert (Technical Sergeant) (Production individual)
- Personalities, Units and Organisations:
- Physical Characteristics: Colour format: B&W Sound format: Silent Soundtrack language: None Title language: None Subtitle language: None
- Technical Details: Format: 35mm Number of items/reels/tapes: 1 Footage: 900 ft; Running time: 8 mins
- Notes: Technical: the technical quality of the Hadamar film is poor because of the low light conditions, some shots are mere silhouettes. Remarks: Hadamar was one of the principal sites within Germany of the development and implementation by doctors of the euthanasia programmes T4 (October 1939)and 14f13 (January 1941) using lethal gassings, injections and deliberate starvation. These programmes were essential to the research and development of gassing and cremation as a means of fast, efficient mass killing and disposal of selected humans. Summary: the Dope Sheet of Summary 2 relates the story of The Trek as told to the cameraman by the soldiers in the film. Historical Note: this material was assembled and listed for possible inclusion in the SHAEF film intended for exhibition in Occupied Germany in 1945; the uncompleted British film "Memory of the Camps" (held as A70 515) and the US film "Todesmühlen" (directed by Hanus Burger).
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