identity tag, Far-East POW

Catalogue number
  • EPH 87
  • plastic
  • wire
Alternative Names
  • FULL NAME: identity tag, Far-East POW
Object Type
personal equipment
souvenirs and ephemera

© IWM (EPH 87)

Purchase & License

Second World War Far East prisoner of war (POW) identity tag issued to Major W T Carden whilst a prisoner of the Japanese in Shamshuipo camp, Hong Kong and also in camps in mainland Japan. At the time the recipient was a Warrant Officer in the Royal Army Pay Corps. The number '176' on the tag denotes the camp number ('Haku Nanaju Roku') and the symbol below the number signifies that the prisoner was also a camp fireman. See also the private papers associated with W T Carden held by the Department of Documents, catalogue reference 84/13/1.

History note

Identity tag issued to Major W T Carden whilst a POW in Shamshuipo camp, Hong Kong and Nagasaki and Omine camps in Japan where he worked in the mines. Prior to capture he had been an NCO in the Royal Army Pay Corps. The number ‘176’ indicates the camp number (‘Haku Nanaju Roku’) and the symbol below signifies that he was also a camp fireman. He kept a graphic diary during his captivity, which he hid in a hole in the ground used by prisoners as a toilet. ‘Deaths very frequent although no one takes much notice these days’, diary entry by Bill Carden while in Shamshipo camp in 1942

Physical description

A rectangular piece of yellowing plastic with the number “176” painted on it and the letter “A” scratched into it. Suspended from this by a piece of twisted wire is a second piece of plastic with a red Japanese character inside a red circle painted on it. Tied to the top of the tag is a large safety pin.

Paint, black


Paint, red

Japanese characters denoting camp fireman

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