The POW’s Legacy

Florence Kain did not want those German POWs on their land. Germans had shot down her sister Mary’s husband, a British fighter pilot and she wasn’t feeling kindly towards them. Even if the POWs stationed near their home at Camp Algona were most likely not the ones personally responsible for her brother-in-law’s death. Florence’s husband, Dick, continued his campaign. He needed help getting the corn in. At eighty cents per man for a day’s work, having a crew helping him would be a huge blessing.

She final gave in. “Okay, but I’m not feeding them.”

“You have to feed them. If they’re here working, we have to give them a mid-day meal.”

“All right – but I’m not using my good dishes!”

Seventy-five years later, when I heard this story from Florence’s niece, you know I had to use it in The POW’s Legacy. Florence Kain isn’t around anymore to share her story with others. But her memory lives on with these true-life memories of life in northern Iowa during World War 2. Many true-life experiences are shared in this book, although re-told in a fictional manner.

The POW’s Legacy is a Christmas story. Yet it’s not just that. It’s about a special nativity scene created by German POWs held at Camp Algona, in Iowa. They created a nativity scene their first Christmas in Iowa in 1944, out of soil from the Iowa fields – formed and baked in ovens to harden and painted.

The following year, they wanted to build another better scene – larger and with more figures. They built sixty-five half-size figures. Besides the Holy family, they made shepherds and sheep and wisemen, and angels. When the was over, they left the creche to the town of Algona, where it has been displayed every year since, excepting last year due to Covid.

The book is more than a Christmas tale. It’s the story of friendships formed between people from two waring countries, some that lasted until their deaths many years later. Although told in a fictional manner, many of the people in the book and the experiences that happened are based on true life people and true-life situations.

This is my book baby born just this year – but the events that lined up for this to happen had its gestation over 75 years ago.

10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. trishafaye
    Dec 12, 2021 @ 23:55:43

    Reblogged this on Writer's Zen Blog.


  2. Anne Clare
    Dec 13, 2021 @ 00:23:04

    What a fantastic story! This one is my TBR list 🙂


    • trishafaye
      Dec 19, 2021 @ 22:27:58

      Thank you Anne! I really, really enjoyed working on this story. It was a fascinating tidbit from the past and I almost didn’t want to type ‘The End’ and leave this world.


  3. melodiemillerdavis
    Dec 13, 2021 @ 02:57:10

    Sounds great. You are a prolific writer & author. Best wishes with this!


    • trishafaye
      Dec 19, 2021 @ 22:27:17

      Thank you Melodie! I’ve really enjoyed working on this story. I thought it was a fascinating tale from the past that keeps sharing the Christmas spirit so many years later.


  4. Author
    Dec 13, 2021 @ 15:08:38

    What a wonderful story this sounds to be. AND wow on the number of things they built. Amazing. JIllian


  5. Deb
    Dec 15, 2021 @ 12:53:18

    I see it’s on Amazon!👏👏 I’ll make it my Christmas gift to myself.😁


    • trishafaye
      Dec 19, 2021 @ 22:21:53

      Thank you Deb! I have to admit – of all the books I’ve written or worked on – this one is my favorite story line so far! I was almost sad to finish it and write ‘The End’. I didn’t want to leave that world.


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December 2021

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