The famous “Lost Battalion” of World War II was composed primarily with men from Texas with a few from other states. These men were in the 131st Field Artillery, Second Battalion of the 36th Division. Wise County , Texas and the surrounding North Texas counties supplied the majority of men for the Field Artillery unit.

The 131st Field Artillery Unit left the United States on 21 November 1941 and were on their way to the Philippines when Pearl Harbor was bombed. The group was diverted to Australia and put under Dutch command, then they were sent to Java. They arrived at Soerabaja, Java on 11 January 1942. The Artillery unit was moved 40 miles by train to Camp Singosari . The Japanese Air Force started bombing the Island of Java on 3 February 1942. The Island fell to the Japanese on 8 March 1942. The men on the Island were transferred to prison camps in Burma . These men later became known as “The Lost Battalion”.

Bridgeport , Texas members were:

Bert Jones

Edgbert Hudson

Ray Singleton

Warren Atkinson

Max Upperman

Most of the POW's were liberated on the 15th of August 1945. Four of these men survived the imprisonment and returned home to Bridgeport in October of 1945 . Max Upperman died in the 100 Kilo Prison Camp of Beri, Beri on 4 October 1943. The returning men from the Lost Battalion had very little to say about their ordeal in the prison camps of Burma . Finally the last living Wise County member of the lost Battalion gave an interview to Denny Deady, staff member of the Wise County Messenger. This interview with Bridgeport ’s Edgbert Hudson can be accessed by clicking your computer mouse on the picture of Mr. Hudson which is shown below. This opens a two page Adobe PDF file which contains the interview. If the print is too small click on the plus sign to enlarge the text.

The Wise County Heritage Museum has a room dedicated to the Lost Battalion and is a great place to examine the history of the the Lost Battalion and the men who served in the 131st Field Artillery. The museum is located in Decatur, Texas at 1600 South Trinity Street.
A book detailing the history of the Lost Battalion was written by Horace G. Teel of Rising Star, Texas 1978. The name of the publication is: Our Days Were Years: History of the "Lost Battalion" 2nd Battalion, 36th Division and was published by Nortex Press, PO Box 120, Quanah, Texas
Additional books on the Lost Battalion written by Clyde Fillmore, Frank Fujita, and K.O. Thompson can be examined at the Lost Battalion Room at the Wise County Heritage Museum in Decatur, Texas.
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