History in Siouxland, Algona

2 Jul

Exploring some of the outer reaches of Siouxland I ventured into Algona, Iowa. A small community bustling with activity. I have been told about it and stopped in enroute to another destination so I didn’t spend a lot of time. But I did stop by the POW Camp Museum located in the community’s downtown area. During WWII a number of German and Italian prisoners of war were shipped back to the U.S. via the ships taking supplies to the troops overseas. The U.S. camp administration in Algona oversaw a number of of prisoners (10,000 from April of 1944 to February of 1946 according to its website) along with other camps in the region.

Intern Allie Baker gives a history of the POW Museum and its significance during WWII that is located in Algona, Iowa Friday June 9, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The museum details this information and puts faces to a number of POW’s who were hired out as laborers during their incarceration.

Photos of prisoners of war at work in the POW Museum in Algona, Iowa Friday June 9, 2018. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

So many decades ago but the museum puts into perspective the fact that the POW’s were not so dissimilar to those who homesteaded Iowa and became citizens during the late 1800’s. It was well worth the stop and definitely worth another visit the next time I visit the area.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

2 Responses to “History in Siouxland, Algona”

  1. Becky July 2, 2017 at 8:53 am #

    Fascinating…I had no idea there were such POW camps in the Midwest. It seems a world away that such things were going on in our own “backyard”.

  2. jerrymennenga July 2, 2017 at 3:11 pm #

    I am finding there are quite a few interesting little items scattered about Siouxland. The area is not a “destination” place for the most part, but does contain interesting aspects of life if the local residents and visitors take the time to search them out.


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