Transcription Tuesday 2020: Stobs Camp prisoner records
Hannah Bell of the Internment Research Centre explains how you can help uncover records of civilians and soldiers detained in Stobs Camp in the First World War
This is one of four projects that we are supporting as part of our fourth annual Transcription Tuesday event on Tuesday 4 February 2020. Click here to learn about the other three projects.
About Stobs Camp Project and Internment Research Centre:
The Stobs Camp Project is a community-led initiative by Archaeology Scotland in the Hawick area in the Scottish Borders that began in 2016.
We have collaborated with partners across the world to research Internment Camps during the First World War and commemorate those who interacted with them.
Our findings, discoveries, collections of postcards, oral histories about the camp, and much more are available through our website.
When the First World War broke out in 1914, German and Austrian civilians living in Britain were seen as ‘the enemy within’.
Many were interned in detention camps, either because they were considered a threat to national security or to protect them from hostile citizens.
Foreign nationals were interned at Stobs from the start of the war.
Over the next four years, they were joined by captured soldiers and sailors, and eventually it became a prisoner of war camp.
Records from 1916 list 4,616 prisoners, of whom 1,829 were soldiers, 504 sailors and 2,283 civilians.
Of the civilians, 2,098 were Germans, 181 Austrians, 3 Turks and 1 Bulgarian.
After years of research, we have finally been presented with the opportunity of learning the names of the German prisoners at Stobs both civilian and military.
About the records:
This Transcription Tuesday we need your help to capture and uncover these names through the International Committee of the Red Cross [ICRC] database.
The ICRC is made up of a series of lists produced weekly.
These records capture every Prisoner of War/Civilian internee that came to Stobs as their first camp in the internment system (Main List entries that state Stobs) and any movements to Stobs at a later time (Appendices).
We are aiming, with your help, to create a complete list of all the Prisoners of War/ Civilian Internees who were at Stobs.
We feel that recording their names is just a small way in which we can remember them, though we do recognise that individuals may be missed depending on circumstances.
How you can get involved:
We are asking that volunteers look at the lists and record any references to Stobs Camp or Stobs Hospital.
You can take part by first downloading a copy of the Stobs Camp spreadsheet and saving it to your computer.
Then go into the Google Drive and open one of the Allemands Books.
If it hasn’t been marked by a volunteer, follow the links and check for Stobs.
Record any Stobs entries on the Stobs Camp spreadsheet.
Full records and instructions are available on Google Drive here.
If you would like to take part in this project, please take a moment before Transcription Tuesday on 4 February to make sure you can access the records on your computer.
If you have any problems accessing the records, please email email@example.com.
Finding out these names will enable us to find out even more about the people who were interned at the camp - where they came from, what they did, how old they were, what sort of health problems they faced, and so much more.
We will then be able to link their names to the records they left behind enhancing the current catalogue.
The prisoners also left behind records and artefacts.
We have a complete run of the camp newspaper (Stobsiade), postcards, letters, theatre and concert programmes along with other artefacts like model ships and marquetry.
This list of names gives us the opportunity to link these items with a real person bringing them to life.
Linking these names to items in our catalogue collection will also help researchers looking for their ancestors.
Getting a complete list of names is only the beginning of unlocking the potential of these records.
We are very excited about these records and hope you will help us remember the men and make these records accessible to researchers around the world!