My uncle, George Steiger, was stationed on Corregidor Island in the Philippines in 1941 and was captured by the Japanese in May, 1942 when the island surrendered…
George survived his ordeal and was promoted to the rank of Major after the war. He had a few good years until his health deteriorated. He died of cardiovascular problems in 1960 at the age of 56.
He was buried in Downey, Los Angeles County, California. His wife, Ottly Goodrich Steiger, born in 1903, passed away in 1988.
About the diary: Published online as Captain George Steiger: A POW Diary by Frank Steiger (the author’s nephew), who notes the following:
The following is a record of his diary entries from July 1941 to September 1945. It is transcribed from a blurred typed carbon copy made by his wife, Ottly Goodrich Steiger. Additional information inserted in the typed copy by Ottly Steiger is shown in italics. In some cases the text was so blurred as to be difficult to decipher. In addition there were some typos and unfamiliar abreviations. When the meaning was reasonably clear, I made the correction. When the meaning was uncertain, I left it “as is,” in some cases inserting a comment in brackets [ ].
The Philippine Diary Project includes the author’s entries from September 16, 1941 (arrival in Manila) to November 7, 1942, (departure from Manila as a POW). His entries from August 22, 1945 (notification to POWs that the war ended) in Rokuroshi Camp, to September 26, 1945 (departure from Manila for Pearl Harbor) are also included as a unique record of a POW captured in the Philippines, returning there en route home after liberation.
Particularly in the prewar portion of the diary, as noted above, there were additional notations by the author’s wife, as well as the inclusion of excerpts from the author’s letters. Only diary entries, as much as possible (and identified as such) have been used here, although if there letter excerpts written in diary form, or if there was an annotation to the author’s diary, then those have been retained.
The chronology of events in October to December entries are sometimes not in chronological order, or lumped together.
Additional corrections, particularly to place names, made by The Philippine Diary Project are placed as underlined italicized text within brackets [like so].