Bag of millet
Photo Credit: Courtesy
The prisoners in Camp No. 5 at Pyoktong were on a diet of millet and occasionally, cracked corn. This bag is about one day's rations, or 450 grams of millet. Millet can only be digested when it is cooked, but because the men were not allowed to build fires, the millet was often eaten raw and therefore held no nutritional value. The starvation diet led to malnutrition and disease within the prison camp. As a boy in Pilsen, young Emil Kapaun learned to repair farm implements. He used this skill inside the Korean prison camp, fashioning cooking utensils and dishes from scrap metal, and cooking millet for men over small fires, which he built in the face of punishment.
Page last updated Wed April 10th, 2013 at 00:00