Visiting the downtown Roswell area where you are saturated with UFO history. The UFO Museum and many stores that try to sell you UFO memorabilia. (Ok, yes, I bought some UFO stuff but anyone that knows me knew I would! LOL)
Here’s the thing though. This city has much more history than that. Firstly, did you know that during World War Two around 1943 the army built a POW war camp here that housed almost 5000 German soldiers! Mostly from the fight against Rommel in Africa from the German 8th Army. While they were imprisoned here they were put to work in local fields and farms and some in the river called Spring
River, building flood control banks along the river. On one of the northern banks the prisoners used different sized rocks to make an iron cross on the bank. (The symbol of Germany and the Luftwaffe) Although initially the local people were offended by this and covered it up by pouring concrete over it to hide it. Through the years the concrete has washed away and the entire cross is again visible to everyone to see and has been since declared historic and put on the register as such.
Next we have the Berlin Wall. More German history here. After President Ronald Regain publicly asked Gorbachev and the Russians to “Tear Down That Wall” they did and the world began changing again. (I think for the better at the time) By this time the German Air Force, the ‘Luftwaffe’ had a permanent presence in the area (New Mexico). After the wall came down the Luftwaffe gave the city of Roswell a piece of the Western side of the wall for their hospitality, goodwill and friendship they experienced while on military maneuvers in Roswell. It now stands on display at the riverbank near the iron cross. On a foot note here, we were in Roswell during the memorial day weekend and the Luftwaffe were here which they are a lot.
Lastly we now have the famous Air Force Base, you know, the one that the UFO crash pieces and the bodies were supposedly brought to before being transferred to Area 51. It was called Walker Air Force Base located within the city limits just south of town. It was founded in 1941 and was closed in 1967. In 41 the Roswell Army Flying School was established as a training base. During WWII the base housed the SAC (Strategic Air Command) and was a nuclear active dispersement base. The B29 Bomber ‘Enola Gay’ the plane that dropped the bomb on Japan was stationed here. The SAC stayed here for more than 20 years and was home to the SAC’s major detterent forces including B29’s, B36’s, B47’s B52’s, KC97’s and the Atlas F ICBM’s. Since it closed the airfield has become an international airport of sorts (Limited flights out) and has also
become an airplane boneyard (graveyard) with hundreds of retired jets littering the property’s edge. (I want to go play in them but they won’t let me, DANG IT)
This has been my history lesson so far and hope you have learned something new as well. I for one am having some much fun learning and seeing new stuff. Cheers everyone, Kevin