Minnesota Liberators of Concentration Camps Oral History Project: Interview with Wayne D. Hanson
Part 1


Part 2


Description BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION: Wayne D. Hanson was born near Montevideo, Minnesota. While he was growing up his father worked for the Rural Electrification Administration and his mother worked at a J.C. Penney store. He graduated from high school in Benson, Minnesota, in 1942. One year later he enlisted in the military and was put in the Army's 42nd Rainbow Division. He went overseas in 1944 as a staff sergeant in a machine gun platoon. As part of a fast mobile unit that lead troop movements, on April 29, 1945, Hanson was in the first platoon to arrive at Dachau after the Germans abandoned it. He was there for only about one hour before having to continue toward Munich, but he was able to see the initial conditions following the liberation. Dean also served in the U.S. military in the Korean War. SUBJECTS DISCUSSED: U.S. residents' light attention to Nazi Germany in the late 1930s; Hanson's first experience in battle, against a patrol of about twenty Germans; battles at the cities of Nuremberg, where snipers were dangerous, and Schweinfurt, where Allied bombers destroyed the city while infantry watched from high ground outside the city; information in "Stars and Stripes", the Army newspaper, regarding concentration camps; Task Force Linden, a mobile unit designed to move quickly with much firepower; immediately finding a 52-car train full of dead people outside the camp; survivors' appearances and physical conditions; German guards who were wearing prison uniforms in order to blend in or escape; prisoners' reactions when the Allied soldiers arrived; reacting to the camp experience by losing a feeling of trust in people.
Quantity 1.5 hours sound cassette
10 pages transcript
Format Content Category: sound recordings
Content Category: text
Measurements 01:05:45 running time
Creation Interviewee: Hanson, Wayne D.
Interviewer: Greenberg, Michael
Made in Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, United States
Subjects Made in Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, United States
Dates Creation: 04/20/1982
Holding Type Oral History - Interview
Identifiers OH 52.3
Accession Number AV1996.48.3
More Info MHS Library Catalog
Related Collections Oral History - Project, MHS Collection, project: 'Minnesota Liberators of Concentration Camps Oral History Project'

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