CPS Unit Number 115-10

CPS Unit Number 115-10

Camp: 115

Unit ID: 10

Title: Massachusetts General Hospital

Operating agency: OSRD

Opened: 10 1943

Closed: 10 1946



CPS Unit No. 115, subunit 10, located at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, subjected COs to experiments on the effects of drinking sea water.


Dr. Allan M. Butler directed this OSRD project testing the toxicity of seawater to help determine emergency rations for life boats.  The Harvard Medical School Department of Pediatrics sponsored the project from September 1943 to December 1945, for which six or seven men volunteered.  The American Friends Service Committee provided agency oversight.


Since the concern for persons in life boats was evaporation of body liquids, studies examined the effects of drinking sea water, along with other possibilities for replacing fluids.  Five CPS volunteers spent two weeks in a life raft in Cotuit Bay near Boston.  A discovery was that men could overcome evaporation “by soaking their clothes and hanging over the side of the raft for five minutes every half hour”.   (Keim p. 79)

Boston, Massachusetts, United States