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John O. Pons transcript

 Collection — Container: Single Folder Collections - 2009 Box 2 (09.0048-09.0084), Folder: 09.0059 - Folder 1
Identifier: 09.0059

Scope and Contents

1st Lieutenant John O. Pons' oral history transcript details his experience as a military policeman at the Nuremberg Trials as a part of the 793rd Military Police Battalion from 1945-1946. Pons also describes his return to Germany in 1951-1952 as a member of the 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, of the 4th Infantry Division. Pons provided security during the Nuremberg Trials over 10 separate occasions and spent most of his time completing various tasks such as breaking up riots, controlling traffic, and participating in raids.


  • Created: 1945-1952
  • Other: Majority of material found within 1945-1946
  • Other: Date acquired: 05/14/2009


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to quote, publish, broadcast or otherwise reproduce from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Associate Dean for Special Collections & Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Florida State University Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

Biographical or Historical Information

John O. Pons was born on February 18, 1927, in Toronto, Ontario. His family moved around often when he was growing up so for high school he attended a private military boarding school in Jacksonville, Florida. This allowed him to stay at one school while his family moved around the United States. Soon after graduation, he was drafted into the United States Army in preparation for the planned invasion of Japan.

While training at Fort McClellan, Alabama, the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and then Nagasaki a few days later. Since the invasion of Japan was called off, he was transferred to the 793rd Military Police Battalion in order to help at Nuremberg where the Nazi war crime trials were taking place. He was sent to Nancy, France for three weeks of police training before arriving in Bad Tolz and Nuremberg in April 1946. While in Germany he was able to witness the trials, visit the prison, and patrol the city. After the war he lived with his wife Mary, who he married before being sent to Europe. They moved to Tallahassee, Florida in 1950. A year later he was drafted back into the Army, and due to his knowledge of the German language, was deployed to Germany instead of Korea. He returned home in November 1952 and worked as a plantation manager in Tallahassee. In 2008 his wife passed away and then in 2014 he passed away at the age of 86 years old.


1 folders

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Transferred from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience to FSU Libraries Special Collections & Archives in July 2022.

Source of Acquisition


Method of Acquisition

Reichelt Oral History Project

Related Materials

Find a Grave website for John O. Pons: [url=][/url]

John O. Pons transcript
Julianna Witt
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

116 Honors Way
PO Box 3062047
Tallahassee FL 32306-2047 US