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Nazi Prison Escape

Dutchman and dummy
A Dutchman and a dummy.
Escaping Colditz
12: December 1941

For their manhole escapes (see #11), the Dutch had tricked the guards into thinking they were all present at the prisoner count conducted in the park before the return to the castle. Two weeks before Christmas, the Germans discovered how. Suspicious that something was up during the count, the officer in charge asked all prisoners standing to the right of him to step to the right, and all those to the left of him to step to the left. One man remained in the middle. Turns out it was a dummy, all dressed up and standing in—along with another equally gussied-up mannequin—for two Dutch officers, who were soon found hiding under a pile of leaves.

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  1. First escape
    April 12, 1941


  2. Straw mattresses
    May 8, 1941


  3. Locked cells
    Mid-May 1941


  4. Canteen tunnel
    May 1941


  5. German woman
    June 1941


  6. Air-raid shelter
    June 1941


  7. Hacksaw
    June 1941


  8. Over the wall
    July 2, 1941


  9. Air shaft
    July 28, 1941


  1. Lavatory
    July 31, 1941


  2. Manhole
    Late summer, 1941


  3. Dummies
    December 1941


  4. German officers
    December 1941


  5. Main gate
    January 6, 1942


  6. Town dump
    March 1942


  7. Wooden crate
    September 7, 1942


  8. Mussolini's office
    September 9, 1942


  9. Headquarters building
    October 15, 1942


  1. Willi the electrician
    December 1942


  2. "Maddest attempt"
    May 11, 1943


  3. Franz Josef
    September 2, 1943


  4. Cellar house
    January 19, 1944


  5. Rubbish heap
    May 2, 1944


  6. Greatest escaper
    September 25, 1944


  7. Glider
    April 1945



Escaping Colditz | The Jailor's Story | Great Escapes | The Colditz Glider
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