A Documentary Film by G. Scott Porter

We are a part of our people, a splinter of the nation which......has been separated into a foreign land.
~ Unknown German POW, Ogden, Utah 1945

During World War II more than 370,000 German prisoners of war were captured overseas and sent to prison camps across America. SPLINTERS OF A NATION tells the extraordinary story of 8,000 prisoners sent to Utah.

For more than three years, these prisoners worked side-­‐by-­‐side with thousands of Utahns on farms and factories across the state. This powerful collision of two enemies on the homefront created life-­‐changing exchanges and left behind some extraordinary tales. There were heroes, villains, murders, escapes, as well as amazing acts of humanity and inspiring friendships cast against the bitter backdrop of the war. Tragedy marked the end of their stay as a deranged American guard opened fire on hundreds of sleeping prisoners, killing nine and wounding 19. This tragic event in the small rural town of Salina became the largest WWII massacre on American soil.

The story is told primarily through first-hand accounts of living witnesses, including living POWs, interviewed in locations across Germany. Through never-before-seen footage and rare photographs, viewers see the prisoners as they really were, in the authentic Utah environment of the 1940’s. Dramatic recreations of the story's most important events create a visually rich experience. On-camera interviews from local, national and even international historians and scholars lend credibility and vital context to the film.

About the Filmmaker


Scott has developed and produced engaging and meaningful video for more than 10 years. He has created award-winning short-form documentaries, television ads, and instructional videos. Scott is driven by a desire to share significant and inspiring stories with the world—stories that would otherwise remain untold.

Scott decided to create SPLINTERS OF A NATION after filming a life-history project about his grandmother, Karla. One of Karla's most profound life experiences came from her interaction with German prisoners of war on her farm in Lewiston, Utah. The simple life-lesson she learned was passed on to Scott, giving him a deep, personal connection to the film.

Visit SPLINTERS OF A NATION Official Website