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Doodles of World War II Prisoners

Illustrations by U.S. POWs

Thousands of American citizens were held captive as prisoners of war during World War Two. The experience of capture and imprisonment inspired a great deal of artwork. This exhibit includes a selection of artwork produced during periods of captivity in German POW camps, along with an oral history from a fellow POW. All these collections are sourced from The National WWII Museum, New Orleans.

Doodles of World War II Prisoners

From "Memoirs of a Prisoner of War," a 77-page, wartime POW diary of George S. Vasil, B-17 Navigator, 8th Air Force.

Elaborately drawn, colorful illustrations, George Vasil's renderings were both a way to pass the time and a valuable record of the enemy's incarceration methods.  Should a soldier escape, this kind of intelligence could play a pivotal role in freeing his battle buddies.

This detailed watercolor rendering of the concertina surrounding his prison camp and the positioning of a guard tower is one of the finer examples among the collection.