Following is a short history on each of the 13 POW Camps in North Vietnam
Isolation. This period, from 1964 to 1969, was marked by the existence of several small camps, such as the Plantation and Briarpatch, and isolation of the POWs in small groups within the camps.
Movement: This period, from 1968 to 1972, was marked by the movement of U.S. POWs from South Vietnam and Laos into North Vietnam for detention. With few exceptions, the personnel moved into North Vietnam were kept separated from the men actually captured in North Vietnam.
Consolidation. This period, from 1970 to late 1972, was marked by the closing of several smaller camps and the regroupment of POWs into five major camps (Plantation, Zoo, Camp Faith, Hoa Lo and Dogpatch)
Repatriation. In December 1972, the North Vietnamese began shifting the camp populations in anticipation of the release of POWs. The prisoners in the first and second increments marked for release by the DRV (Democratic Republic of Vietnam), were grouped in one area in Hoa Lo, and all personnel to be released by the PRG and the Pathet Lao, were in another area of Hoa Lo. The POWs in the third increment for release by the DRV were moved to the Plantation, and the POWs in the fourth increment were held at the Zoo.
ROCKPILE The Rockpile POW Camp, located 32 miles south of Hanoi, became operational in June 1971 when 14 American and foreign POWs captured outside North Vietnam, were moved from the Skidrow POW Camp to this facility. This installation ceased to function as a POW detention installation in February 1973, when its POW population was moved to Hanoi for repatriation.
SKIDROW The Skidrow POW Camp, located 6 miles southwest of Hanoi, became operational as a U.S. POW detention facility in July 1968, when U.S. civilian and military prisoners captured outside North Vietnam were moved to this installation.
In March 1971, 36 prisoners captured in North Vietnam were moved from Hoa Lo to this facility because the North Vietnamese considered them "troublemakers". However, prior to the arrival of these prisoners, the personnel captured outside North Vietnam were transferred to another section of Skidrow to prevent communications between the two groups.
In June 1971, 14 of the civilian POWs captured outside North Vietnam were moved from Skidrow to the Rockpile POW Camp. Due to the threat of floods at Skidrow, the "troublemakers" were transferred to Hoa Lo Prison in July and August 1971.
In early September, 21 POWs were moved from Hoa Lo to Skidrow, where they remained until November 1971, when they were again returned to Hoa Lo. A small group of U.S. POWs were moved from Hoa Lo to Skidrow in December 1971, for two weeks and then were returned to Hoa Lo. At this time, the remaining prisoners captured outside North Vietnam were moved from Skidrow to the Mountain Camp, north of Hanoi.
In December 1971, Skidrow ceased to function as a detention facility for U.S. POWs.
SON TAY/CAMP HOPE The Son Tay POW Camp became operational in May 1968, when twenty U.S. POWs captured in North Vietnam were moved to the camp. Two subsequent groups of prisoners were moved to this installation, bringing the total prisoner population to 55 men. In a routine move on 14 July 1970, the entire camp population was moved to the Camp Faith POW Camp. This move was the beginning of a major regroupment of U.S. POWs, which occurred in the summer of 1970.
ZOO The Zoo POW Camp, located in the southwest suburbs of Hanoi, became operational in September 1965, and remained open until December 1970, when all POWs were transferred to Hoa Lo. The Zoo POW Camp was used for two short periods during 1971, when two men captured in Laos were detained temporarily there, before moving to the Rockpile POW Camp.
In September 1971, the Zoo was reactivated on a more permanent basis and used primarily to hold U.S. POWs captured after December 1971.
It replaced the Plantation POW Camp as a "showplace", and remained the "showplace" throughout 1972. The Zoo as a "showplace" was similar in function to the Plantation. Films showing U.S. POWs playing basketball, volleyball and preparing for Christmas, were staged and used for external consumption only.
The Zoo was used as the staging/collection point for the repatriation of the fourth and final increment of POWs captured in North Vietnam.
CAMP HOPE (Son Tay)
HANOI HILTON (Hoa Lo)
North Central Hanoi
33 Miles WNW of Hanoi
9 Miles West of Hanoi
22 Miles WNW of Hanoi
105 Miles NNE of Hanoi
18 Miles SW of Hanoi
40 Miles NW of Hanoi
32 Miles South of Hanoi
6 Miles SW of Hanoi
SW suburb of Hanoi
25 Oct. 67 - 9 Dec. 69
1 Jul. 70 - 17 Aug. 70
13 Sep. 65 - 20 Sep. 65
1 Dec. 65 - 2 Feb. 67
5 Feb. 75 - 9 Jul. 71
14 Jul. 70 - 24 Nov. 70
23 May 68 - 14 Jul. 70
29 Jun. 67 - 25 Oct. 67
14 May 72 - 31 Jan. 73
29 Aug. 68 - 25 Nov. 70
11 Aug. 64 - 28 Mar. 73
12 Dec. 71 - 28 Jan. 73
6 Jun. 67 - 30 Jul. 70
25 Nov. 70 - 16 Mar. 73
21 Jun. 71 - 14 Feb. 73
7 Jul. 68 - 19 Aug. 71
9 Sep. 71 - 4 Nov. 71
16 Dec. 71 - 1 Jan. 72
20 Sep. 65 - 26 Dec. 70
8 Feb. 71 - 10 Mar. 71
14 Jun. 71 - 10 Jul . 71
24 Sep. 71 - 29 Mar. 73
|Year #||Firsthand Live Sighting Reports||# Resolved||# Unresolved|
|Total Unresolved||As At Aug 1992:||108|