Source: RG 389 Box 2129
- Often called the "Diaries Box" at NARA
RECORD OF EVENTS
1st Detachment Americans, Kamioka, Japan
May 24, 1944
One hundred and fifty (150) men were ordered to leave Mukden,
Manchuria: Army, 107, Navy 12; Marine Corps, 31; 1st Sgt. J.
Pase, Sig. Corps, placed in charge by Maj. S.H. Hankins CAC;
destination unknown; 2nd in command: M/Sgt. G.M. Smith, H.F.;
morale excellent; weight (average): 62.7 kilos.
May 28, 1944
Arrived Kyushu, Japan; entrained for unknown destination
May 29, 1944
Arrived Kamioka, Japan - Mitsui Lead Mine Area Prison camp occupied
by 252 Hollanders and 5 English POWS; 1st Lt. G.A. Theunissen,
N.E.I. Army, in charge of Hollanders and English, assisted by
1st Lt. W.A. Bidet and W.F.H. Semmelink, both of N.E.I. Army
June 5 
Selected men for camp maintenance: selection made by appointing
men who I considered would perform their duties honestly and
to the best interests of the workers of the mine, which group
consisted of all remaining men.
June 19 
Pvt. Smith, James H. Army, attempted escape, but surrendered
himself to Japanese 8 miles from camp; placed in solitary confinement
on short rations by Japs
June 29, 1944
PFC C. A. Dees, dislocation of right shoulder by fall in mine.
[Carlos A. Dees, 60th CAC]
July 18, 1944
PFC J. C. Dolsen transverse fracture of left arm (in mine). [John
C., 4th Marines]
July 20, 1944
Sgt. Jack Williams fracture of left arm (mine).
July 23, 1944
Pvt. Jack Warren transverse fracture of left arm (in mine).
194 American POWs commanded by 2nd Lt. [Leonard E.] Goldsmith
CAC, Lt Ginsbirg [Joseph E. Ginsberg] Med Corps [assigned 48th
Material Sqn], arrived this camp and were designated "2nd
American Company POWs" by Japanese.
P. M.. This company designated 1st company American POWs by Japanese.
August 19, 1944
Received from Japanese six (6) large Red Cross comfort parcels;
these were divided equally among this company (150 men); signed
receipt for parcels; requested more.
August 22, 1944
Pvt. Joslin, F. L. [Francis L.], attempted escape from mine;
apprehended by Japanese and placed in confinement in this camp.
October 8, 1944
S/Sgt. Mitchell, W. J. [William J., 24 Purs Gp 20 Purs Sqn],
wounded in both hands and legs by dynamite blast in mine.
October 19, 1944
Pvt. Butler, F. W. [Frank], laceration of left hand from falling
rock in mines; amputation of little finger and ring finger mashed.
October 20, 1944
Pvt. Johngrass, Sam , wounded hands, face, leg, dynamite blast
in mine; vision of right eye impaired.
*October 13, 1944
Pvt. Schroeder, W.[Walter], Marine Corps., concussion of brain
and strained back from fall in sandpit-working in Kamioka.
October 28, 1944
Pvt. Robinson, R., dynamite blast in mine; loss of finger; infected
wounds on remaining parts of hands.
November 11, 1944
Sgt. Lanning, J. L., Med. Corps, admitted to hospital with extremely
serious appearing infection of legs.
*December 15, 1944
Sgt. Lanning: leg amputated.
*December 12, 1944
Pvt Davis, Ben, wounded in hands and face by dynamite blast in
mine; vision impaired.
December 21, 1944
Sgt. Lanning died this date; Christian service by Dr. C. H. Jackson;
military escort to cemetery; requested ashes; request refused.
December 22, 1944
Was requested by Japs to sign receipt for 495 large Red Cross
parcels which would be delivered later; held conference with
other two commanders; result was that none of us three would
sign until delivery effected to our camp.
December 23, 1944
2nd Lt. Goldsmith signed receipt for aforementioned parcels without
first making known his intentions to the other two comdrs. In
return for his signature he was promised special consideration
for his company; it is needless to say we are at odds because
of this act; the Japanese have at an unknown location 495 large
parcels, believed to be in Funatsu, for which they have been
relived of responsibility by signed receipt for same.
December 24, 1944
My leaders consider themselves betrayed by 2nd company and relations
are strained between the two groups; from my own observations
I believe that an open conflict between the Hollanders and 2nd
company is inevitable; such a clash may result in useless sacrifice
of personnel, and since Lt. Goldsmith and the Hollanders leader
are not on speaking terms I must take the responsibility of promoting
P. M.. Same date:
I have called a meeting of all leaders (Americans and Dutch)
who consider themselves betrayed by Lt. Goldsmith's signature
on receipt; to hear his explanations and accept any apologies
he may have to make (to take place tomorrow morning).
December 25, 1944
Meeting proved to be great success; explanations and apologies
made and accepted by all leaders; we three commanders, in the
presence of our leaders, reaffirmed our intentions of support
to each other; considering the potentialities fo the situation,
I feel myself justified in adopting this method to relieve the
situation, and in the interests of the service, incident considered
P. M.. : Signed receipt for 148 small Red Cross comfort parcels
after receiving them this date.
December 31, 1944
We three commanders were called before Japanese and informed
that of the 495 large parcels originally signed for, 21 small
parcels have already been stolen by unknown Japanese.
January 1, 1945
All medical records will hereafter be contained in separate record
books. Start New Year with following figures:
Total Company- 148 EM (62 NCO's; 86 Pvts)
Working in mines45.2% (62)
Working in Kamioka11.5% (17)
Working in Camp8.1% (12)
Working in F. D.14.85% (22)
Sick in Hospital20.2% (30)
Approximate average caloric value of food per diem:
2000 to 2300 previous month
2300 to 2500 first week of current month
January 9, 1945
Signed receipt for 19 Red Cross parcels for hosp; was forced
by threats of Lt. Furushima and Sgt. Maj. Miura (?) To sign (jointly,
the 3 commanders) for receipt of the 21 stolen Red Cross parcels.
January 27, 1945
Signed for and received 140 small Red Cross parcels per man.
January 29, 1945
The following rations are received daily by all hands: 115 g.
rice; 111 gm barley; 111 maize; 122 gm beans; 9 gm flour; 43
gm miso; 9gm sugar; 275gm bread.
February 3, 1945
Pvt Myers (Louis), while working in cobbler's shop adjoining
Jap Hdqrs, overheard Lt. Goldsmith promise Japs that if they
would remove me from my command and join my men with his he could
increase the number of men working in the mine considerably.
Later I was called to office and informed that this move would
take place at once. I declined and awaited the next move. My
reason for declining practically every member of my command has
voiced their disapproval of any such change taking place.
Later in day: My leaders and ranking NCOs were called to my office
and informed of the situation. They unanimously voiced their
objections to such a change, requesting me to continue as their
leader until such time as I could place them under a capable
commissioned officer of the United States. Names of the NCO's
may be found on reverse side of this report.
P. M. : I informed Lt. Goldsmith of the reactions of my men,
and the affair was dropped. Relations between the Japs and my
men are not so good. They miss no opportunity to make us feel
February 4, 1945
No baths for 16 days. Japs will not issue fuel.
February 14, 1945
Sgt. Herring [Robert R.] in poor physical condition after falling
in mine yesterday evening. Was marked qtrs and confined to bed.
February 15, 1945
Sgt. Herring was admitted to hospital 8:00 A. M. Died at 11:00
A M of heart failure. Christian service by Dr. Jackson; military
escort to cemetery.
February 16, 1945
Protested to Japanese of heavy increase in forced labor, poorly
heated quarters, no recreational facilities, stale bread once
daily. Was completely ignored by Lt. Furushima and was finally
dismissed with the statement that the Japanese could not consider
themselves responsible for deaths of prisoners.
February 26, 1945
Requested issue of Red Cross parcels; request granted only on
condition that the contents would be rationed out according to
plans set forth by Jap. Sgt. Mj. Had to accept or do without.
The men need them badly; so accepted.
February 27, 1945
Received ½ parcel per man and began issue of contents
on ration plan; signed receipt.
March 3, 1945
Pvt. Smith died of TB 13:00 this date Christian service; military
escort to cemetery.
March 4, 1945
S/Sgt. Moss [Harry J.], Ser. No. 6298045, died 0130 this dateheart
failure and malnutrition. Christian service military escort to
cemetery; morale of men low.
March 5, 1945
Requested permission from Japs to purchase musical instruments;
P.M.: Rec'd POW Information Bulletin (revised April 1944); re-allotments,
insurance, govt bonds.
March 6, 1945
Canvassed entire companythose who cared to take advantage
of authority granted in the bulletin of yesterday were given
that opportunity; requests were made out and delivered to Japanese
to be forwarded.
March 7, 1945
Requested that Swiss Legation in Tokyo forward copies of W. D
pamphlet "personal Affairs of Military Personnel and Aid
to their Dependents". Japs refused to convey any request
to that legation.
March 23, 1945
Signed for and received 106 ½ Red Cross parcels (small);
have just been informed that all requests for allotments, insurance
and govt bonds given to Japanese for delivery have been destroyed
by order of Mr. Takasachi, Jap hdqrs.
March 28, 1945
Was permitted to purchase 50 gallons of ground grasshoppers to
be divided with entire camp; cost Y 1600; taste putrid.
March 31, 1945
Pvt. Andersen (L. R.) [Anderson, Robert A., 60th CAC], 19054316,
died this date; Christian service by Dr. Jackson; military escort
April 6, 1945
Pvt. Downs (Geo. R.) 19054518, died 02:45 (pneumonia); Christian
service by Dr. Jackson; military escort to cemetery.
April 13, 1945
Officially informed Pres. Roosevelt died; held short prayer service
and lecture on duty and obligations to our country and families.
May 1, 1945
Received 11 personal parcels; all had been looted and practically
destroyed; two with name and address beyond recognition delivered
to sick men in hospital.
May 17, 1945
Objected to Japs sending two of my company to work in mine after
Doctor had pronounced them sick; objection overruled by Japs.
May 19, 1945
The three commanders of Groups have drafted a letter to the Swiss
legation requesting an investigation of conditions prevailing
in this camp. Food situation and general treatment are becoming
June 5, 1945
Have started searching mountain sides for green things to eat;
30-40 men daily to procure food for the 600 men present in camp.
June 28, 1945
Pvt. Robinson was caught trying to trade a shirt to a civilian
Jap for food. Was beaten until unconscious (by Mr. Shimada),
stripped nude and dragged to guardhouse; confined without clothes,
food or water; all protest useless. Japs finally permitted 200
gms rice and a little water to be given to Pvt. Robinson daily.
July 3, 1945
Pvt. Robinson released; very poor physical condition; seems to
mentally affected by treatment.
July 14, 1945
Cpls. Sheya, Smith, Pvts, Warren, Morris, Robinson, Lippard,
all beaten severely and confined in guardhouse without clothing;
offense: lost or misplaced some article of clothing.
August 1, 1945
Cpl Sheya (Melvin), M. C. , Pfc Johnson, Morris, USMC, Pfc Sparks,
Geo W. USMC, Pvt. Morris, Harry F. , Army and Pvt. Phillips,
G., USMC, departed this date for unknown destination. Cpl. Sheya
in charge. Physical condition of Pvts Morris and Phillips, poor.
[All rescued Toyama 7B]
August 14, 1945
Called to Jap Hdqrs with other US Group Commander (Lt. Goldsmith)
and beaten over head with wooden clubs (reason not given).
August 17, 1945
Called to office and informed that armistice signed and POW status
continued until turned over to US troops at coast.
August 18, 1945
Men are anxious to obtain revenge on Japs for maltreatment in
past, and are slightly difficult to restrain. Established combined
Hollander and US guard over food in storehouse.
August 19, 1945
Strained relations have improved slightly.
August 21, 1945
Rations doubled by request; demanded return of Pvt Joslin to
my command if still living.
August 25, 1945
Informed that Pvt Joslin was still alive and would be returned
next day; sent message to Capt. Lisle asking advice on whether
to place myself and company under Lt. Goldsmith, or to continue
my individual company; was ordered to continue as in the past
until evacuation of the camp.
August 26, 1945
Was informed that Pvt Joslin refused to return to Kamioka; was
given choice of all clothes in go-downs for my group; camp bought
cow for Y 1300.
August 27, 1945
Camp purchased horse (for consumption cost Y 1700).
August 28, 1945
Camp presented with 2 year old bull gratis; rec'd first info
September 3, 1945
Received medicine, foodstuffs, tobacco, clothing, candy, etc,
dropped from plane in Funatsu-Nagoya area; all supplies divided
proportionally between Kamioka, and Funatsu camps; M/Sgt Smith
(Geo. M) made Provost Marshall overall Allied troops this camp;
Sgt Thompson, F. E, made Acting 1st Sgt.
September 4, 1945
Plane dropped supplies-food, medicine, tobacco, etc, in this
camp. Nav. Gun. Hoyt and Sgt Keller arrived from Toyama to evacuate