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Robert Kirby - Korean War

Robert Kirby was a Military Policeman who served in Korea from 1952 to 1953 with the 8137th Military Police Group. Most of his tour was spent on Koje-do island guarding North Koreans POWs who were committed communists, bent on causing as much trouble for their captors as possible. Kirby remained on Koje-do when the prisoner exchange occurred following the July 1953 armistice.

Interview Links

Feature Excerpt

North Korean Defector

Abstract

Interview Session (Audio)

An MP guarding North Korean prisoners during the war

Transcript


Photos

Caption

Robert Kirby stands beside a shack he built outside of the compound at the Chogu-ri POW camp on Koje-do Island.

Where:

Chogu-ri POW camp on Koje-do Island

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Robert Kirby patrols the perimeter of the POW enclosure at Chogu-ri.

Where:

Chogu-ri POW camp

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Robert Kirby supervises POWs handling petroleum outside Camp #9 at Pusan.

Where:

Camp #9 at Pusan

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

View of the GI barracks from the POW compound at Chogu-ri.

Where:

Chogu-ri POW compound

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Kirby at Chogu-ri. This photo was taken in June, 1953, shortly after ‘friendly’ North Korean POWs had been released in the middle of the night by South Korean President Syngman Rhee.

Where:

Chogu-ri

When:

1953

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Robert Kirby’s 8th grade graduation photo circa 1945.

Where:

Unknown

When:

circa 1945

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

North Korean cap insignia that Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner. The prisoners fashioned such items themselves in a UN equipped metal-working shop within the camp. They were fiercely proud of their caps and insignia.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Unknown

Caption

This is the cover from a pamphlet that Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner, and the first of a series of photos from that pamphlet. It included detailed instructions and intricate drawings of military hardware, tactical maneuvers, etc.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department.

Caption

Remnants of page 7 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Remnants of page 8 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Remnants of page 9 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Remnants of page 17 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Remnants of page 18 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Remnants of page 21 of the pamphlet that Robert Kirby confiscated from a North Korean prisoner.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

This image is considered to be in the public domain. Images of the entire pamphlet are archived in the ALPL Audio-Visual Department

Caption

Robert Kirby at the time of his high school graduation.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s Photo

Caption

Robert Kirby and a fellow soldier (Jim) at Camp #9 in South Korea.

Where:

Camp #9 in South Korea

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s Photo

Caption

Robert Kirby pulling gate guard duty at Chogu-ri. Kirby has taken his helmet off for the photo.

Where:

Chogu-ri, South Korea

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s Photo

Caption

Robert Kirby patrols the perimeter of the enclosure at Chogu-ri during headcount, with orders to shoot into the compound if the G.I.s conducting the headcount are assaulted.

Where:

Chogu-ri, South Korea

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s Photo

Caption

POWs sometimes performed menial tasks, such as these POWs working at a POL (petroleum, oils and lubricants) dump, under Kirby’s supervision.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Kirby’s last photo taken in Korea. Troops are lined up waiting to board a ship heading home.

Where:

Korea

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s photo

Caption

Troops boarding ship for home.

Where:

Unknown

When:

Unknown

Ownership:

Narrator’s Photo



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