Bangkinang POW Camp

In October 1943 POW men, who had been interned at the Kempeitai prison in Padang, were brought to a new prison camp near Bangkinang, around 50 km west of Pekanbaru. The camp was built in an abandoned rubber factory.


The POW women and children were moved from Padang to Bangkinang in December 1943 where they were housed in newly built camp around 3 km west of the mens' POW camp. During the war other smaller groups were brought to these camps and by the end of 1944 there were nearly 3,200 civilians interned at these camps.


In 1945 alone approximately 140 prisoners from these camps died from disease and exhaustion.

Bangkinang POW Camp

Bangkinang POW Camp

The Japanese surrender was announced in the Bangkinang camps on the 22nd of August 1945. The following day the men were allowed to visit their wives and children in the other camp. Large amounts of food, medicine, and other goods were brought into the camp and by early September around 1,300 men, women and children, along with around 100 of the sickest, were taken to Padang in trucks.


On September 10th 1945, a seven man allied reconnaissance team was dropped over Bangkinang. Evacuation of the remaining ex-internees started on the 27th of September 1945. 

They were taken to Medan, Palembang, Padang and Singapore. The ex-prisoners being transported to Medan, Palembang and Singapore were taken to Pekanbaru and then onto their final destination by airplane. The evacuation of all POW was completed on the 11th of November 1945.


By the end of the war a total 163 women and children along with 136 men and boys had died at the camps in Bangkinang.

Men's POW Camp in Bangkinang today

Memorial at the womans POW Camp in Bangkinang today

The womans POW Camp in Bangkinang today

© 2019 by Farrell Family

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