Danish version 

 The Author of This Site

 The Background

 The Landscape 

 Building the Position

 The Infantry and Trenches

 The Light Batteries

 The Heavy Batteries

 The Camps

 POW´s and other Prisoners

 Other Facilities

 Other Batteries

 The Zeppelin base Tönder

 The Remains

 Start


 



































  





























 


 


The Northern German Defence Line 1916-18 (
Sicherungsstellung Nord)
 
The State Prisoners and the POW´s
 
 
There were two kind of prisoners working around the Defense Line Sicherungstellung Nord.  The Prisoners of war, that according to the
 international rules did not work on the defense line, but did some planting in the woods, draining the moors and other civil works.
 Other POW´s helped at farms in the area, to compensate for the men who were enlisted.
 Below, there is a link to a story about Dmitri, a Russian POW. 
 
  Security Stronghold North. POW´s at Almdal, Denmark
                    Russian POWs and their guard in Almdal

 Then there was the German Prisoners of the state. They were political prisoners and military deserters,  the so-called Festungshäftlinge,
 who normally were kept in the German fortresses.
 Under poor and brutal conditions, they were working at the defense line. No machines were available and everything had to be done by
 hand. 
 The death count among these prisoners was very high. Either they died of epidemic deceases or were  killed attempting to
 escape from the hard work and bad existence. Up early, and on foot to the battery where they worked. After a long days hard work, they
 went back to
 the camp on foot where they only got some small rations of vegetable soup.
 Constantly watched by the guards with mounted bayonets. There are stories about how even minor violations was rewarded with a
 bayonet, some chalk and the mass grave.  Where these unmarked graves are situated is unknown today.  
 A lot of circumstances indicate that the POWs had much better conditions than the state prisoners.
 After the war some graveyards for
 the POWs were found, but no remains of the prisoners. It also might be possible, that the prisoners were considered a like, and just
 made some different work.

 
If they died the POWs were registered, but the prisoners were not.
 An example of the hard labor was to carry water to the concrete in the batteries. Often it was situated 1 or 2 km away and was carried in
 buckets. Day and night when the work started.

 
                                           Team of prisoners at Arrild.
 
 The POW graveyard at Lögumkloster.

 
The German authorities established the graveyard for POWs. It was founded in 1915 for the POWs that were kept under rather poor
 conditions at Lögumkloster.
It contains 71 French, Belgian and Russian victims of a Typhus epidemic in 1915. All POW´s have their own
 stone with name, nationality an date og death.  At memorial on Danish, French and Russian has been raised by surviving POWs.
 At the cemetary in Lögumkloster the doctor from the camp is burried. He also died of tyfus. 

 The state prisoners lived in camps at Genner , Skovby, the farm Damgaard at Rugbjerg, Abkær, Strandelhjörn,  Galsted, the farm
 Östergaard at Gammelskov, Hyrup, Öster Terp, Toftlund, Arrild,  Öbjerg,  Ullemølle, Skärbäk, Gaardkrog at Vester Gasse, Lögumkloster
 and Döstrup.

 
 Every camp was under command of a Leutnant, and every camp contained one or more penal companies with 250 men each. A pioneer
 battalion staff and 6 pioneercompagnies supervised the construction site.
Some POWs were stationed in the small communities like
 Almdal, and several stayed after the war.
 One of those who stayed was Dimitri.
                                     
                                            
 

                                                                                              
                                                                                                         Dimitri´s grave in Almdal