RG 331 Box 921; Mansell NARA 5 RG 331 Osaka Box
IMPORTANT NOTE: This report was
prepared post war by interviews with local Japanese who had every
reason to portray their behavior at humane and within the Geneva
Conventions. Please accept information with this fact in mind.
SUPREME COMMANDER FOR THE ALLIED POWERS
9 February 1946
SUBJECT: Re Investigation of IKUNO Prisoner of War Camp
By direction of the Chief, Investigation Division, Lt. J B Ammon
and Lt. S Walters, accompanied by T4 Toda, as interpreter, proceeded
to Ikuno, Japan and made an investigation of the POW Camp there.
(This report to supply information for the prosecution of War
1. LOCATION: The address of Ikuno POW Camp is: Kuchigindani,
Ikuno-cho, Asago-gun, Hyogo Prefecture.
Military Objectives: This camp is on the outskirts of Ikuno village,
about 800 meters from the Ikuno Mine Surface Plant, that is the
nearest military objective. See Exhibit A. The roofs of the buildings
were not marked until after 15 Aug 1945, when large letters PW
were painted on.
2. DESCRIPTION: The main entrance to the camp is reached
by crossing a bridge. The camp lies along the river bank and
is surrounded by a board fence 10' high with sharp stakes on
top. Just inside the gate were the Japanese offices, quarters,
dining room, kitchen, guard quarters, and one cell. The cell
was 15' x 9' and had one small window.
There were ten barracks. Not all of these were used as quarter
for the POW's however. Barracks nos. 1 and 2 were identical,
one story buildings constructed of wood with a mud plaster covering.
Dimensions 36 meters [118 ft] x 5.4 [17.7 ft] meters. Each barracks
contained eight rooms 12' x 12'. Barracks No.1 was used by the
PW officers for about 10 days and then they moved to barracks
No. 10. There were 40 officers in all. No. 2 barracks was used
as a clothing and equipment warehouse. Outside were 2 wash throughs
and 2 latrines, one for each barracks.
Barracks Nos. 3,4, and 5 were wooden one story buildings with
mud plaster covering, dimensions 41 meters [135 ft] long and
4.8 meters [15 ft] wide. Each barracks contained seven rooms
15' x 12' and quartering ten POWs. AT the end of each barracks
was a latrine consisting of a urinal and five toilets. Between
the barracks were two wash stands.
Barracks No. 6 was never used as quarters, but as a sort of auditorium
where the Prisoners put on shows, etc.
Barracks Nos. 7,8,9 and 10 were all of the same design and dimensions,
36 meters long and 5 meters wide. All of barracks No. 7 and one
half of barracks No. 8 was used as quarters for the enlisted
POWs. 18 men slept in each of the rooms, which were 9 meters
x 4 meters in size. Straw mats covered the floor boards. The
other half of barracks No.8 and all of No.9 were used as food,
clothing, and equipment warehouses.
No. 10 barracks was POW officers quarters, 5 officers having
a room 4 meters x 4.5 meters, crude wooden bunks with straw mats
had been constructed in the officers' barracks. Each of the latter
four barracks has a wash stand and a latrine with urinal and
The hospital was a building 29 meters long and 6 meters wide.
Half the building was used as sleeping space for the average
number of patients, which was between fifteen and twenty. The
rest of the building contained treatment room, medical supply
room and office.
The POW bath was in a wooden building 12 meters x 5 meters, with
a cement floor. The bath was cement, 10 feet long and 8 feet
wide. There were also eight showers in the building.
The remaining building, 15 meters x 5 meters contained a PX,
a canteen, tailor shop and shoe shop in which the Prisoners worked.
3. UTILIZATION: [slave labor use] The Ikuno POW Camp was
opened to provide the Ikuno Copper Mining Co. with labor.
Clothing: The prisoners were issued Japanese Army summer uniforms
plus cotton fatigues ot wear at work. For shoes the Jap canvas
shoe was provided and some prisoners still had their own GI shoes.
The men working underground were given a miners' safety type
cap. (This of very cheap construction)
4. PRISONER OF WAR PERSONNEL: On 29 May 1945, 400 Prisoners
arrived from Tanagawa and Wakayama Camps, American and English.
On 31 March 1945, 40 prisoners from Kobe and Naruo - Officers.
On 22 August 1945, 6 officers transferred to Wakinohama.
On 31 September 1945, 14 officers transferred to various camps.
5. GUARDS: See attached roster of Japanese Army personnel.
6. WORK: All the prisoners from this camp worked for the
Ikuno Copper Mine (Misubishi Kogyo Kaicha, Ikuno Koyo Sho)
In the mine the prisoners shoveled, ran drill machines, did timbering
and operated mine locomotives. On the outside they did mechanical
work, ore-sorting and ore transporting. The officers worked in
the camp gardens. One American Captain (Name unknown) had mining
experience. He worked underground as advisor and safety man.
One Jap laborer or warden to every 15 POWs while at work.
0700 Left Camp
0800 Start work
1130 lunch [the POWS were lucky to get
1300 start work
30-40 minute walk from camp to mine.
All the prisoners got Sunday off, they had the run of the
camp on that day.
Pay 1 yen per day, this paid to army; workers rec'd 20 sen.
Red Cross - none distributed at Ikuno. The POW's brought some
Red Cross supplies with them from other camps.
The Prisoners were allowed to hold church services.
7. FOOD: An average days menu as follows:
Breakfast - rice and soup
Lunch - every other day either rice or bread. Sometimes a type
of canned vegetable (this given the PWs by the company)
Dinner - rice, soup, usually a vegetable
The Company furnished the food, the army paid the company for
it. Gardens were kept in the camp to supplement the diet.
8. MEDICAL: There were no deaths at the Ikuno Camp.
Medical personnel consisted of one company doctor who came very
rarely. Two prisoner doctors and one POW dentist, three Jap medics
and six POW medics. Medical supplies were furnished by the Company
plus Red Cross supplies.
Injuries were mainly bruises and cuts, although there was one
fractured leg. There was an average of 20 patients in the hospital
at a time. The most common diseases were beri-beri, pneumonia
9. SANITATION: see 2 above.
10 AIR RAID SHELTERS: None provided in the camp, a shelter
provided on the outskirts of the village for Jap civilians, ex-guards
said that in case of air raids it was planned to use this. As
mentioned above, the buildings weren't painted to distinguish
them form the others until war's end.
11. PUNISHMENT: Nothing that would lead to belief that
any atrocities occurred in this camp was brought out. When questioned
ex-guards stated that all punishment was left up to the superior
officers among the prisoners.
12. During this investigation no leads were uncovered
to show any atrocities of any kind.
We, S. Walters, Lt. O-1332112 and J B Ammon Lt., O-1185962,
certify that the above contained facts are true as we saw or
as were told to us during our investigation of Ikuno POW Camp
on 7-9 February, 1946.
9 February 1945
JAMES B. AMMON 2d Lt. O-1185962
Legal Section GHQ SCAP
SAMUEL E. WALTERS, 2d Lt., O-1332112
Legal Section GHQ SCAP