Motor Pool Oberursel and its Swimming Pool 1929 – 1969

I have permission to share the following photos of the very first swimming pool in Oberursel, which belonged to the Motor Pool.

1929: pool party or Sommerfest (summer fest)

Summer fest 1929

On 30 March 1945, U.S. troops occupied the town of Oberursel and the Motorenfabrik (Motor Pool). The Motor Pool remained in U.S. American hands until 1956/1957.

Change of hands: The Americans returned the Motor Pool back to the Germans in 1956/1957

The Motor Pool also had its own fire department. The next three photos show a fire drill held in 1969.

Photo source:  Geschichtskreis Motorenfabrik Oberursel

For more about the history of the Motor Pool, have a look at the book at 125 years of Motor Pool history , a post I had written about the author Helmut Hujer, and his work.

Oberursel and its first Outdoor Swimming Pool

The very first swimming pool was built by the Motorenfabrik Oberursel (Motor Pool) in 1927.

Werksschwimmbad Motorenwerke Oberursel

(Bildquelle: mit freundlicher Erlaubnis vom Geschichtskreis Motorenfabrik Oberursel)

The engineer Helmut Stein, who had joined the Motorenfabrik in 1925, initiated the construction of this Werksschwimmbad (factory-run pool for its staff and families). Other facilities, such as sport fields and a shooting range, were added later.

The company supplied the material, and construction was completed by its own workers after working hours.

During the summer months, swimming lessons were given to the young vocational trainees. It soon became a social meeting point for its workers and families.

The city of Oberursel itself had to wait another decade for its own public pool (see postcard). Construction went from 1934 – 1936, and its Grand Opening took place on 7 June 1937.

Städtische Schwimmbadeanlagen Oberursel, 1937

Source: „125 Jahre Motorenfabrik Oberursel, 1892 – 2017, Wandel gehört zum Leben“ by Helmut Hujer

125 Years of Motor Pool History in Oberursel, Germany

After years of intensive research and collecting photos, Mr. Helmut Hujer, published his book 125 Jahre Motorenfabrik Oberursel in September 2017.

The book includes 125 years of the history of the Motor Pool from 1892 – 2017.

U.S. Americans worked at the Motor Pool from 1945 – 1956.

M.I.S. Center Motor Pool at Rolls Royce in Oberursel, Germany in 1945

(Photo credit goes to John Dolibois, with his permission to publish)

I got in contact with Mr. Hujer through one of my blog readers, Jack Stites. Jack, who had worked at the Motor Pool from 1954 – 1955, then contributed some photos for this publication.

Book about Motor Pool, Oberursel

List of contributors to the book: 125 Years of the Motor Pool Oberursel

If you are in Oberursel, you can purchase the book for euro 50 at the Vortaunusmuseum, at the Werksmuseum Rolly-Royce, or directly from the author (hujer.helmut@t-online.de).

If you are in the U.S.A. and want it shipped (896 pages, weight: 11 lbs), then add the postage fee of euro 37,99 to the book price.

If you need help getting this arranged, then drop me a line.

POW Descendants Visit Camp King, Oberursel, Germany

As a member of the Camp King Historical Society, I occasionally write about the latest news, events, tours, etc.

That’s how Judy, a blog reader, found me and asked to enlist my help in getting a tour of the Camp King and the Klinik Hohemark from our historians, Mr. Kopp and Ms. Struck.

This is what Judy had to say:

My father was an American POW and spent time in the Hohe Mark hospital and Dulag Luft (later known as Camp King).  My son and I will be in the area touring sites connected to my father’s war experiences.

We leave for Koblenz right after our morning tour in Oberursel… and we are visiting a couple of different towns where my father’s plane crashed and where his crew member was buried.

Mr. Kopp, Judy and son Will, in the center, and Ms. Struck

The tour given by Mr. Kopp and Ms. Struck was a success, and later on I was able to catch up with our visitors as well.

Kuranstalt Hohe Mark, Oberursel

Hauptgebäude: main building

Kuranstalt: convalescent home

Based on my knowledge, this card dates back to about the 1930s.

Reflections of my Service at Camp King in Oberursel, Germany

This post has been contributed by Greg Cochran, who was stationed at Camp King in Oberursel, Germany during the period of 9 June 1971 through 17 August 1973 in Detachment A, The United States Army Reception Group, Europe (USARGE).

I was a Specialist Four in the U.S. Army assigned to Detachment A, USARGE. I lived in the barracks #1010, it was the barracks for soldiers in USARGE. Later some of us moved next door to barrack #1011 as we got more people in the unit. We lived at Camp King and the soldiers in Detachment A mainly worked out of a building at Rhein-Main Air Base during the day close to the flight line, when we weren’t processing soldiers for exercises in Germany, or some national guard units or on military exercises in Norway, Turkey, Greece and Italy.

When I was there, I missed out on going to Greece with Detachment A, because I was assigned to help with boarding U.S. military personnel going to the 1972 Olympic at the town of Dachau, W. Germany outside of Munich. The army base was closed, but several buildings were open to house military people going to the 1972 Olympic. These buildings were located in the old German army base three-story brick barrack (beside the concentration camp of Dachau), where they could sleep for two dollars a night and also could eat in the mess hall in the three-story barrack.

The German Eagles were still over the main doors of the three-story barrack from World War II, without the Nazis symbol below the eagles feet. Officers and female military personnel stayed overnight in the old military housing apartments. The base theater was also open to show movies at night for the people staying there.
The commanding officer of USARGE, when I ended my service in Germany, was LTC Edward R. Shore, JR., LTC, TC, Commanding.

I still have a picture of the arm band that we wore, when directing the soldiers off the planes onto the buses, which would take them to the area from where they would deploy for their military exercise.
Later, after the military exercise was finished, we would process them through customs, and put them on the planes for their trip back to their military bases in the U.S.

USARGE arm band

Below is a picture of Detachment A, USARGE, getting an award for a military exercise in Norway. I’m in the back row on the left * on the end and the award was given in the USARGE building on Camp King.

This is building #1005B, the same building that had the bowling alley upstairs on the end and the post exchange laundry under the bowling alley in the basement. The unit supply room were armory also were in the basement.

USARGE award ceremony

The commanding officer of USARGE, when I ended my service in Germany, was LTC Edward R. Shore, JR., LTC, TC, Commanding.

I have been back to Germany three times (for three weeks at a time) with the Ohio Army National Guard between 1992 and 1993, when they had the draw down of the army. The Ohio maintenance company I was in helped bring equipment up to standard for turn in. We worked long hours, so the equipment could be turned in on time, and units could be deactivated in Germany.

We were there to work and not to see the sites… I was sorry that I never got to see Camp King, while I was in Germany with the Ohio National Guard helping to turn in the military equipment. We were lucky to have any time off during the weekends.

I retired from the Ohio Army National Guard as a Master Sergeant and I really enjoyed my time in Germany, when I was stationed there at Camp King.
Camp King was a military base, where you could feel safe walking alone at night. My army friends and I enjoyed walking the trails in the woods on the weekends, in the old parts of the city in the narrow streets, and we also enjoyed the open restaurants with seating outside on the sidewalks along the streets of the town.
We also had our favorite German restaurants in Oberursel, that we would go to on the weekends as a group.

* The names of the guys, if available, will be added later.

Thanks, Greg, for sharing your experience of your service time in Germany.

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