The ‘Goat Farm’ on Camp King, Oberursel

There has never been a ‘goat farm’ on Camp King in Oberursel, hence the quotation marks. The U.S. soldiers stationed there liked to refer to this piece of land, with just one mean goat, as the ‘goat farm’.

One of my readers, a former soldier stationed there from 1966 to 1968, wanted to know what happened to the goat farm. I asked someone who would know, our historian Manfred Kopp, and this is what he had to say.

There has never been a goat farm.

The School of Agriculture (Siedlungshof) hosted a big array of chickens, rabbits and some sheep. On the sheep meadow, right next to the prison camp, the POW prisoners were allowed to do sports, especially soccer. The meadow was not secured by barbwire, unlike the camp itself.

On this meadow, there was a small hutch with a goat,  notorious for its aggression towards the prisoners. One incident made this goat especially famous. When one group of prisoners  were able to escape on Pentecost 1941, one of the guys, Roger Bushell, was able to hide in the same hutch under the straw and muck, and got a head start by several hours. He escaped several hours before the rest of the group, and was able to head south.

The same goat was also featured in Thomas Killper’s art work next to the Kinderhaus (formerly Kommandur Haus). Look for #20 to see the goat and its hutch on the map.

This is a close-up of the actual art work. With this, the goat has become eternalized.

The location of this meadow with hutch can be found on the map, listed in the article ‘Flieger ohne Flügel’ (reprint S. 262). Number 7 on the map lists the ‘Sportplatz’ (sports field).

Today, the so-called goat farm is still green. It is part of the Camp-King Park, on the corner of Camp King Allee and Elvis-Presley-Weg. The park itself is almost 10 acres in size.

Corner of Camp King Allee and Elvis-Presley-Weg, entrance to the park

Camp-King Park in Oberursel

One feisty goat was enough to leave this little story behind.

1918, French POW in Germany and a Hidden Message

About 15 years ago, while visiting my hometown of Hambach in northern Bavaria, we discovered a pie safe in the attic of my parents’ farm home.

We took a closer look and founds this inscription on the inside of its back.

Fait par un prisonnier Français. Le 5 Juillet 1918,

Hambach     Genty Albert …73…

We decided to return it to its rightful owners, his descendants, someday. That ‘someday’ has come as my brother has sold his house now and we had to move it to another storage space for now.

The time has finally come to do some inquiries.

Genty Albert - un prisonnier Francais

My social media friends contributed this link in my search for Albert Genty’s descendants. His name is mentioned in the left-hand column, 9th one up from the bottom.

Liste officielle des prisonniers de guerre

Liste officielle des prisonniers de guerre

The list is more legible if you read it from the website: http://gallica.bnf.fr/m/ark:/12148/bpt6k5770231v/f29.textePage

Again, my social media friends directed me to another possible source: a D. Genty in Champigny-sur-Yonne, and I inquired, but they are not related. My search continues. From Monsieur Genty, I just got a polite ” Non, ce n’est pas un de mes ancêtre. Merci.”

Next, I will be looking for a local historian who might be interested in obtaining this chest of drawers for the local museum, etc.

To my readers: If you have any information on how to locate any descendants of Albert Genty, or know of anyone who would appreciate this historical piece of furniture, I would be most grateful.

It is currently stored in a village near Schweinfurt, Germany.

Pie safe made by POW Albert Genty in Germany

Pie safe made by POW Albert Genty in Germany in 1918