Bandar Shahpur - World War II - Persian Gulf CommandPhotos by: Walter Peach
Narratives by: Eugene Warren
This picture shows the jetties at which the ships tied up to be unloaded. The crates you see piled up are chassis and parts of trucks. They constituted the deck cargo that was lashed to the deck of the ship when it arrived. These were the first things that had to be discharged prior to opening the hatches.
This photo is taken before the dock was finished at Bandar Shahpur. The crane belonged to the contractor building the jetty.
This picture shows the British tents in which the troops were billeted when they arrived at Khorramshahr. I lived in one these tents. These tents had two tiers separated by an air space. This was the way to combat the enormous heat build up. When we arrived it was the rainy season so that footing was almost impossible. The rain soaked ground became the most slippery mud field imaginable and we were falling constantly.
This picture shows a shower. Coolies would keep the cans on the top filled with water. There were no latrines. We filled our helmets with water to be used for shaving and wash up. The latrine consisted of a simple screen of burlap. Inside were wooden platforms with buckets to receive the defecation. Coolies were employed to empty the buckets. This was especially difficult because of the slippery mud.
Walter Peach with Sergeant Dennis Broussard. Dennis was the First Sergeant - topkick!.
Harry Schaumburg, battalion commander, with some Indian officers. This must have been Khorramshahr because there was no city locale at Bandar Shahpur.
This picture shows type scenes of children that could be seen everywhere. The soldiers would hand out candy. Notice the clothing - no shoes and rags. The children had eye problems that the army doctors would cure by doing a relatively simple operation.
These children were employed to move cargo from the barges. Barge cargo was mostly sack goods and small arms ammunition. They were expected to be able to walk a narrow plank from the barge to the waiting railroad cars carrying on their backs one of the sacks or boxes of ammo. In order to carry this load they wore a pad on their back that had two straps that fit over their shoulders and under their arms.
The picture showing the children does not show them carrying the loads. This could have been taken when the train stopped and they approached to sell something or get a handout of candy or cigarettes.
There were no roads or trucks in Bandar Shahpur. This photo was probably taken before Walter moved to Bandar Shahpur. It shows a convoy of trucks carrying cargo north to be delivered to the Russians. This would have had to be shot when Walter was in Khorramshahr. Khorramshahr was larger than Bandar and had road connections.
The "pig" is most likely a wild boar. From time to time a small party of men would leave Bandar Shahpur via the railroad tracks and hunt for wild boar using carbine rifles. If they shot one it became the occasion for a large barbecue. One of my pictures shows this. The barbecue pit was made of oil drums split lengthwise and fired with dunnage wood. The result was delicious. This photo looks as if the man is wrestling with a wild boar. There were no dogs or pigs in Bandar Shahpur that I had ever seen.