Pursuit of an 'Unparalleled Opportunity'
The American YMCA and Prisoner of War Diplomacy among the Central Power Nations
during World War I, 1914-1923.
by Kenneth Steuer

Appendix 13a

Giessen Prison Camp Program

image The Prisoners of War Military Band performed a concert on 13 February 1916 for the benefit of POWs in the prison camp in Giessen. This program highlights the eight pieces performed by the band, which included marches, waltzes, an overture, and a concluding solo. The American YMCA supported musical entertainment in prison camps by distributing musical instruments and sheet music for bands and orchestras. The goal of this program was not only to help musicians maintain their musical skills but to also provide the general camp population with a mental diversion for an afternoon or evening.1


Note 1: Giessen Prison Camp Programme, Sunday, 13th February 1916. Armed Services Records Box 53, Folder: "German Language Publications, ca. 1918," Kautz Family YMCA Archives, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN.