Brandon Bies of the National Park Service prepares to do an oral history with veteran Elvin Polesky, who was at Fort Hunt right after World War II ended.
About two years ago, National Park Service employees stumbled upon a fascinating and largely untold piece of American history. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. During and right after the war, thousands of top German prisoners were questioned there about troop movements and scientific advances.
Many veterans never spoke about it, even to family and friends, although the operation has been gradually declassified over the past two decades.


He knew it had been the site of an intelligence operation during the war, but he'd been unable to learn much more.
Then one of the tourists raised her hand and said her next-door neighbor had been an interrogator at Fort Hunt. Bies learned the veteran's name, Fred Michel, and tracked him down at his home in Louisville, Ky.
Stories of secret submarines and nuclear devices and German rocket scientists that we absolutely had never heard of before," says Bies. The park service contacted him and then reunited him with Michel at the park in August 2006.


So Bies and his colleagues began to interview and record as many Fort Hunt veterans as they could find. He wears a white T-shirt with the word "SECRET" written across it in bold black letters a€” a souvenir from the National Park Service.



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