The SCROLL of Phi Delta a for March,
which depended on his individual skill everybody worked and before long we
and whether or not he was early on the had some very efficient squads.
scene in finding lumber stored away beWe established a school for children
neath the buildings. We had been told to with about 25 adult classes besides. Sevbring our own mattresses, bedding, and eral religious groups held weekly services
mosquito nets, but for those who had and every Sunday evening after supper
none of these, the Thai army supplied there was a vesper service for the whole
what was needed. There were lavatories camp with special music but no sermon.
and showers in the grounds, but water There was little recreation at first, but
for washing clothes was always a problem after things settled down a bit we were
since in our area there was only one tap permitted to draw on the camp fund
to serve 64 people.
(everyone had contributed to this) for
On the second day in camp each na- equipment for badminton and baskettional group organized a governing com- ball. We Americans had to teach the
mittee and those three committees then British how to play the latter game, but
met together almost daily as the central they learned quickly and for many weeks
executive committee of the camp, for the two games were played each night after
Thai officials left internal affairs largely supper.
in our hands. We appointed sub-comFour doctors among the internees gave
mittees on education, sanitation, reli- time daily for clinics. On their recomgious services, medical care, supervision mendation cases needing more extensive
of housing, and food, and soon had camp treatment were sent to the Red Cross
routine well-organized. Meals were sup- hospital where excellent care was given
plied by a government hotel and brought by Thai doctors and nurses. While there
in by truck three times a day. They were were some serious illnesses, both mental
not very satisfying nor was there much and physical, no resident of the camp
variety, but the food committee strove died during the six months of our stay
mightily to bring about improvement there; and all the Americans were in fair
and to obtain special food for the chil- health when we departed, though pracdren. Fortunately we were permitted to tically all had lost weight.
receive gifts of food from Thai, or EuroOur exchange was arranged by the
pean friends who had not been interned Swiss government, whose representative
(Danes, Swiss, French), and we could buy had been striving to obtain improved
canned goods through agents so long as conditions for us from the very beginsupplies lasted or our money held out. ning. We were not perinitted to take writWe could also buy charcoal for the small ten materials prepared in camp (letters,
stoves many of us brought along when diaries, etc.), nor any pictures, even of
we came in, and that enabled us to sup- members of our family. Flat silver (if we
plement our meals with food of our own had it), cameras, and typewriters could
be taken and the equivalent of $300.00.
Since there was danger from air raids Unfortunately, all possessions left in our
by the British or by Flying Tigers, strict homes had already been confiscated by
black-out rules were enforced from the the Thai Department of Commerce, and
beginning. Each cubicle had a single ten- our bank accounts had been gone since
watt lamp which was coated with black the opening day of the war. What we had
or blue paint except for one spot at the with us in camp we could take if we
bottom about the size of a quarter, but could carry it, or prevail on others to
all lights had to be put out at P.M. We help us. There were many delays after
had our air wardens, fire squads, and the first date of departure was named,
first-aid groups, but practice was not but in the end we were placed on a small
taken very seriously until the first raid Thai coasting vessel and sailed from
(Continued on page 244)
occurred at 4:30 A.M., January 8. Then