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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Wharton in Wharton County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Site of World War II Prisoner of War Camp

 
 
Site of World War II Prisoner of War Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Gregory Walker
1. Site of World War II Prisoner of War Camp Marker
Inscription. Included in a land grant awarded in 1824 to Martin Allen, one of Stephen F. Austin's "Old Three Hundred" colonists, this property has had a long and varied history. In the 1840s Allen's heirs sold most of his land to Albert Clinton Horton, Wharton County planter, Texas Revolution veteran, and the state's first lieutenant governor. Horton's heirs sold the property in 1930 to a group of investors who planned to develop the area into a county fairground, and several structures were built on the site. Fair organizers sold the land to the county in 1942.

During World War II, over 50,000 German prisoners of war were interned in camps throughout Texas. Camp Swift in Bastrop County operated a number of branch camps along the Texas Coast, and in 1943 Camp Wharton was established at this site. The old county fair buildings were converted for use by the prisoners and U.S. Army, and the prisoners worked as farm laborers throughout Wharton and Colorado counties.

After the camp was closed at the end of the war, the site was offered to the newly created Wharton County Junior College District in 1946. Both fairgoers and students used the facilities here until 1967, when the entire grounds were purchased by the college.
 
Erected 1991 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 4917.)
Location of World War II Prisoner of War Camp Marker image. Click for full size.
By Gregory Walker
2. Location of World War II Prisoner of War Camp Marker

 
Location. 29° 19.351′ N, 96° 4.987′ W. Marker is in Wharton, Texas, in Wharton County. Marker is on East Bolling Highway (Farm to Market Road 1301) east of Junior College Boulevard, on the left when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2015 Jr College Blvd, Wharton TX 77488, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Wharton County Courthouse (approx. 1.4 miles away); Kendleton (approx. 10 miles away); a different marker also named Kendleton (approx. 10 miles away); Powell Point School (approx. 11.5 miles away); Joseph and Rachel Rabb Newman (approx. 13.8 miles away); El Campo (approx. 14 miles away); First National Bank of El Campo (approx. 14.1 miles away); Prairie Switch (approx. 14.2 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  Prisoners of War article in Handbook of Texas Online. (Submitted on July 30, 2016, by Gregory Walker of La Grange, Texas.)
 
Categories. War, World II
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Gregory Walker of La Grange, Texas. This page has been viewed 142 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Gregory Walker of La Grange, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on August 1, 2016.
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