Crossen Oder POW Camp

The World War One POW Camp in Crossen an der Oder

crossen oder lager camp

Prisoners of War waiting for soup at the Prisoner of War Camp (Kriegsgefangenenlager) in Crossen, c.1915.

During the First World War a prisoner of war camp was established by the Germans, to hold mostly Russian prisoners, just outside the town of Crossen an der Oder in what was then the German state of East Brandenburg, present-day Krosno, Lubuskie, western Poland. Here are scans of some of the old images we have in our collection of the POW camp in Crossen.

crossen an der oder prisoners of war

Bread being carried by prisoners under Prussian guard at the POW camp in Crossen Oder (Krosno Odrzańskie) in 1915.

The camp in Crossen a/ O. was of the ‘Mannschaftslager’ type. A basic camp for enlisted men rather than officers. Prisoners were of several different nationalities including Russian, French, Belgian, British, American, Canadian, Italian, and Serbian. Many of whom were put to work outside the camp in agriculture, on farms in the area.

crossen krosno pow camp

The pharmacy at the First World War POW camp in Crossen an der Oder (Krosno), c.1915.

Crossen an der Oder was renamed Krosno Odrzanskie at the end of the Second World War when the borders of Germany and Poland were redrawn following the decisions made at the Potsdam conference of July / August 1945. Nothing remains in Krosno today of what was the First World War P.O.W camp.

Crossen camp krosno

An old French postcard featuring a photograph of prisoners at work under guard in Crossen in 1916.

Similar prisoner of war camps were established and in use throughout Germany between 1914 and 1918. Other POW camps located close to Crossen included ones in Frankfurt an der Oder, Guben (Gubin) and Sprottau (Szprotawa).

Related content on Polish Poland: the nearby Second World War ‘Great Escape‘ Prisoner of War Camp in Sagan (Zagan).

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