Screening U-boat Prisoners for Further Interrogation

        Detailed interrogations of U-boat prisoners of war were carried out at the Joint Interrogation Center at Ft Hunt. When the center opened in August 1942 its capacity was 60 prisoners.  In April 1944 a new building was opened with a capacity of 192 prisoners.  The majority of prisoners were German Army or Air Force and were interrogated by U.S. Army interrogators. The U.S. Navy was responsible for the interrogation of German Naval prisoners. Typically, about 20 U-boat prisoners from several boats were present at the center at any one time.  Only about 10 percent of prisoners from a U-boat were selected for detailed interrogation.

        The selection of prisoners for detailed interrogation usually took place at the ports of debarkation (nost often Newport News, Brooklyn, and Boston).  Prisoners were examined individually by an experienced interrogation officer, and either designated on the spot for final screening or rejected as useless.   Each prisoner was asked to fill out a questionaire, bearing his name, rank and internment serial number, his birthplace, the complete inscription of his identification tag, his place of residence, civilian occupation, etc.  In many instances a mere glance at this form would serve to eliminate a particular prisoner.  Thus it was possible to carry out a large number of tentative screenings in a short time.  The prisoners, in most cases, accepted this form as an essential procedure in debarkation and filled in the requested information.  Because of brief interrogations previously made before their shipment from Europe, Africa or South America, they did not suspect the full import of the questionnaire.  Tentatively selected prisoners were then briefly interrogated for further screening (sometimes after transportation to the holding camp at Ft. Mead Maryland) and those finally selected were transported to Fort Hunt for detailed interrogation.

        Upon completion of the screening interviews, the screening officer would make brief notes on the suitability of each prisoner at the bottom of the questionnaire.  After the screening process was completed, the interrogating officer would prepare the Preliminary Interrogation Report. This brief report served two purposes. The primary purpose was the timely dissemination of information useful to operating forces. The secondary purpose was to provide information useful in the detailed interrogation of prisoners.

        In the case of U-595, prisoners arrived in Newport News aboard the USAT Brazil at 1700 on the 30th of November 1942 and were interrogated the next day. On the basis of that interrogation, all four officers and eighteen enlisted men were selected for further screening and were transported to Ft, Meade, Maryland.  The remainder of the crew of U-595 was sent to Ft. Brag, North Carolina, a holding camp for prisoners awaiting transportation to regular prisoner of war camps. 

        The table below provides a sample of the questionnaires completed by prisoners from U-595 and the comments of the screening officer for each prisoner. Click on the hyperlink on the prisoners name to view the questionnaires.

        At the bottom of the page there is a link to the Preliminary Interrogation Report and a link to documents related to a carge of violation of the Geneva Convention made by Jürgen Quaet-Faslem. These documents explain how the crew of U-595 was interrogated and transported to Fort Meade and Fort Bragg.

 

Name
Rank/Rating
Stammroll Number
Serial Number

Screening Officer Comments

Selected for Further Screening
 
QUAET-FASLEM, Jürgen Kapitänleutnant
 
5G8NA Very stiff. - (Somewhat melancholic)
Y
v. MIRBACH, Emmerich, Frh. Oberleutnant (Ing.)
 
5G9NA Polite, friendly. Might talk. Favorable
Y
KAISER, Frederich Leutnant z. See
 
5G10NA Favorable. Questions reason for personal history.
Y
v. HORSTIG, Horst Eberhard Leutnant z. See
 
5G11NA Considered fresh on the boat. Curious about what was going on on board
Y
PRZYGODE, Herman Obermaschinist
0616/33 T
5G12NA Unwilling. Tough nut. Notice verbatim answers
N
MÄDEL, Wilhelm Maschinenmaat
UP 1731/37 T
5G13NA Polite. Quite likely material, though answers do not seem to indicate. Intelligent. Good bearing. Can be made to talk.
Y
SCHIERS, Hermann Torp. Mechanikermaat
UO 5437/39 S
5G14NA Very security conscious. Will talk about matters which do not concern U-boote. Fair. Quite conversational when not about work.
N
RATZKO, Jacob Bootsmaat
UN 886/40 S
5G15NA Very good. Talkative about Versenkung.
Y
KARCHER, Anton Matrosengefreiter
UO 4314/41 S
5G16NA Tough. Polite but security conscious.
N
KÖHLER, August Maschinengefreiter
UN 10470/41 T
5G17NA Possibility but well-trained. Little stubborn. Not the worst.
N
HALM, Heinz Werner Maschinengefreiter
UN 10424/41 T
5G18NA Tough. No good to us.
N
SÄUBERLICH, Henry Richard Bernhard Matrosengefreiter
UN 14002/40 S
5G19NA Tough. Very security conscious. Hopeless
N
JOSS, Friedrich Funkmaat
UO 737/38 T
5G20NA Very fair possibility. Can be used. Timid. Recommended
Y
PETERS, Theo Herman Funkmaat
UN 579/40 T
5G21NA Pleasant manner but security conscious. Smiled with each answer. Fair Possibilities
Y
HEIDLINDEMANN, Erich Hermann Maschinenmaat
UN 2625/39 T
5G22NA Fair possibility. Some doubt about what should be security and what not. Not bright. Probably doesn't know much.
Y
BOHG, Willy Walter Bootsmaat
UN 3787/38 S
5G23NA Fair possibility. Not too hesitant. Peasant. Probably conscientious
Y
HORN, Gerd Matrosengefreiter
UO 926/41 S
5G24NA Good. Prompt answers. Can be persuaded.
Y
v. CHARMIER-GLISCHINSKI, Heinz Hermann Hans Wilhelm Maschinengefreiter
O 4565/41 T
5G25NA Possibility. Fairish.
Y
NÖLKER, Walter Ewald Maschinengefreiter
UN 11662/41 T
5G26NA Not too good. Timid.
Y
BUNGE, Franz Richard Martin Funkobergefreiter
UO 9683/40 T
5G27NA Typical radioman. Nothing to be expected. In case of two bad Funke take this one because Obergefreiter.
N
OHRT, Claus Maschinengefreiter
UN 10826/41 T
5G28NA Doubt if knows much. Don't waste too much time on him.
N
RAST, Werner Maschinengefreiter
UN 10842/41 T
5G29NA Definitely to be used. Hesitated only very slightly. Good possibility
Y
LORENZ, Gerhard Fritz Maschinengefreiter
UO 5418/41 T
5G30NA Not much good. Cool and self-possessed.
N
BRIESEMEISTER, Herbert Gunther Matrosengefreiter
UN 1393/41 S
5G31NA Cook. Easily tricked. Likely to be uninformed
Y
ZIMMERMANN, Siegfried Georg Obermaschinist
   O 693/34 T
5G32NA Can be broken (Wardenburg) Tough nut (Dix) Nervous.
Y
SCHWARTZ, Georg Max-Josef Obersteurmann
UN 584/35 S
5G33NA Very tough. Worthless.
N
DURST, Fritz Ernst Heinrich Obermaschinenmaat
UN 2226/37 T
5G34NA May have possibilities. Toss as to whether he would or might. Cool number
N
HEDER, Herbert Paul Maschinenmaat
UN 2928/38 T
5G35NA Not much good.
N
OEHME, Seigfried Kurt Obermaschinenmaat
UO 174/38 T
5G36NA Probably Very good. Other boats but only this one trip. but quite ready to answer.
Y
BRILL, Erich Johannes Bootsmaat
UO 2581/37 S
5G37NA Good man.
Y
DRESSEL, Heinz Kurt Bernhard Maschinenmaat
UO 3809/39 T
5G38NA Thinks he's tough. Under pressure could be intimidated
Y
SCHMIEDER, Helmut Max Matrosengefreiter
UN 16059/40 S
5G39NA Country lad. A little bewildered.
N
GLUDING, Felix Matrosengefreiter
UO 4302/41 S
5G40NA Fair possibility for talking but would not know much.
N
JESPERS, Karl Matrosengefreiter
UO 4312/41 S
5G41NA Useless for our purposes.
N
GARTHE, Walter Ernst Heinrich Matrosengefreiter
UO 4298/41 S
5G42NA Useless.
N
TIETJEN, Karl Matrosengefreiter
UN 27118/41 S
5G43NA Slow initially. Could be tricked.
Y
JUNG, Gerhard Matrosengefreiter
UO 4313/41 S
5G44NA Take him along. Best Matrosengefreiter
Y
BRANS, Bernhard Fredrich Heinrich Maschinengefreiter
UN 10658/41 T
5G45NA Not much good. (Like Hell! T.H.
N
DEGELMANN, Max Johann Maschinengefreiter
UN 10375/41 T
5G46NA Useless
N
LEYKAUF, Andreas Maschinengefreiter
UN 10785/41 T
5G47NA No good
N
ABELING, Karl Freidrich Mechanikergefreiter
UO 6218/41 S
5G48NA No good. Surly
N
DRESSLER, Paul Gustav Mechanikergefreiter
UN 19606/41 S
5G49NA Very remote possibility. Will keep.
N
VOGT, Hans Josef Maschinengefreiter
UN 19959/41 T
5G50NA No enthusiasm for U-Boote but no enthusiasm überhaupt Sichkitten
Y
WAGNER, Fritz (Freidrich Wilhelm) Matrose
UN 22319/41 T
5G51NA Has Hitler youth belt on. No good to us.
N

 


 

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