The Kitchener refugees divided in a number of ways when war was declared in September 1939, and it will be interesting to understand the spread of outcomes.
As we start to get a sense of ‘what happened next’, as families get in touch, this is something I will cover here.
The main outcomes after the war started were as follows:
- Some of the men enlisted in the Pioneer Corps. I have been told by the Pioneer Corps archivist that 887 Kitchener refugees enlisted around this time;
- Some continued to migrate overseas (most to the USA);
- Some found wartime employment in Britain;
- Some were interned towards the end of May 1940;
- Of the latter group, some were interned in Britain, and some were sent to Canada and Australia for internment overseas.
As patterns become clearer, I hope to have time to add more information to this section of the website.