Ohama, Hiroshima #9-B - Japan ***
Ohama, Hiroshima #9-B – Japan ***
Ohama – Hiroshima #9-B
Coal mining operation (Okura Mining Co. Ohama Mining)
26 Nov 1942: Established as YAHATA Provisional POW CAMP UBE Branch Camp OHAMA Detached Camp
27 Nov 1942: men arrived from Singapore
1 Jan 1943: Renamed FUKUOKA POW CAMP UBE Branch Camp OHAMA Detached Camp
1 Mar 1943: Renamed Fukuoka 9-B
1 Dec 1943: Renamed Fukuoka 4-D
24 March 1944: American Medics arrive in camp
8 Sep 1944: Large group of Australians arrive ex Rashin Maru – Byoki Maru (Bioki meaning sick)
14 Apr 1945: Renamed 7-D and Jurisdictional control transferred to HIROSHIMA POW CAMP 7-D
Aug 1945: Renamed HIROSHIMA 9-B
Sept 1945: Rescue effected
Ohama in relation to Motoyama and Oinoyma – Ube
Aerial view post war.
Sketches from Ray Parkin’s – The Sword and the Blossom.
Ohama Camp No 9B was built on the southwest side of a peninsula that jutted out from the western tip of Honshu Island into the Inland Sea 15 miles from Shimonoseki and 10 miles west of Ube. The hamlet of Ohama and the camp were perched on the side of a hill that sloped down to the water’s edge. The camp was surrounded by a high barbed wire topped wooden fence and consisted of two long two-storeyed wooden buildings where the prisoners were to sleep and a third single storeyed building giving access to twelve rooms that could accommodate ten men each.
As well as the prisoners barracks buildings there was also a third building that ran between these two buildings and was used as the cookhouse, mess, mine administration office, Japanese Sgt’s office, bulk store, boiler room and bathing room. One of the barracks buildings, the older of the two, was already occupied by some British Prisoners of War. The Australians were to move into the second and newer of the two buildings.
WX8240 Doug Carter, WX9764 Bert Poulton, WX8562 Aub Schuts, WX8481 Alec Oag, WX16370 Arthur Walker, WX9076 Bob Whitelaw, WX7440 Alf Worth of the 2/4th MGB were the seven members mixed in with men from the 2/3rd MGB to from part of the Australian contingent at Ohama.
The men worked on the nearby coalmine, a drift mine which meant that the seams of coal ran close to the surface whereby the coal was excavated by means of long sloping tunnels, or ‘drifts’ that ran out beneath the sea bed.
Ray Parkin’s Wartime Trilogy is an outstanding account of nautical history with the sinking of HMAS Perth through to the slavery of soldiers in the Ohama Mines – Hiroshima 9B in Japan.
For a more detailed account of Ohama also refer to – http://mansell.com/pow_resources/camplists/hiroshima/hiro_9_ohama/ohama_main.html.
Australians at Ohama, Hiroshima.
Back Row: L-R (1) Bert Poulten WX9764 (5) Doug Carter WX8240
2nd Last Row: L-R (2) Alf Worth WX7440 (3) Alex Oag WX8481
3rd Row from Back: L-R (4) Aub Schuts WX8562 (8) Bob Whitelaw WX9076
Front Row: L-R (9) Arthur Walker WX16370