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Nazi Prison Escape

Prison orchestra
One of the early prison orchestras at Colditz. John Beaumont, who played French horn in a different prison orchestra, made his daring escape in broad daylight.
Escaping Colditz
23: May 2, 1944

On the road leading to the park was an old garbage heap full of cans, cardboard, sticks, rags, and the like. The Germans didn't give it a thought until one day a prisoner was reported missing and, during a search outside the castle, guards came upon a thin, fair-haired man trotting along a path in broad daylight. Tucked under his arm he carried a blanket covered with sewn-on cans, cardboard, sticks, rags, and the like. It was English Lieut. John Beaumont, the French horn player in the prison orchestra, who had hidden in the rubbish until he saw his chance to get over the wall.

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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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