Wednesday, May 11, 2022

German POWs at Fort Robinson

German prisoners stand with American staff. Behind them is Varista Hall, the prisoner of war camp theater. “Varista” is a contraction of Variete im Stacheldraht. It means “variety (vaudeville) in barbed wire.” The marquee reads Freut euch des lebens (“rejoice in life”). It looks like a Christmas production. The Germans are probably members of the camp theater troupe.
By following the Geneva Conventions, the U.S. hoped to encourage humane treatment of American POWs. The U.S. also wanted the Germans to return home with good impressions of American culture and democracy. With that in mind, the little theater even screened Hollywood movies.
History Nebraska operates the Fort Robinson History Center

(Photo: History Nebraska RG2725-16)