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Asmara, Eritrea/Kagnew Station (US Army Security Agency Field Station)

by Mike_Austing Online Now Mar 28, 2006 at 8:10 AM

I was assigned to Asmara from November 1969 to April 1970. Is Kagnew Station (where HQ was located) still there; is it permissible to enter onto the grounds? Some of my fondest memories were strolling Haile Selassie Blvd and Queen Elizabeth Blvd; visiting the restaurants (very good Italian food!) and the local nightlife; taking a gherry cart for the equivalent of.50 anywhere in the city; the "Bush" and the local marts.

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4 Answers
  • RE: Asmara, Eritrea/Kagnew Station (US Army Security Agency Field Station)

    by jclbs Online Now May 4, 2006 at 1:01 PM

    www.southtravels.com/ africa/eritrea/topfivehotel/
    This url takes you to a photo of the Top Five Hotel which is the old Top Five Club at Kagnew Station (if I remember the look of the building) It was the NCO club for the top five enlisted ranks of E5/E6/E7/E8/E9... thus the name "The Top Five Club", now the Top Five Hotel apparently. This would mean that one could still walk the streets of Kagnew. Cal

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  • RE: Asmara, Eritrea/Kagnew Station (US Army Security Agency Field Station)

    by GordonJoy Online Now Sep 3, 2006 at 11:21 AM

    The Lost World of Albero Polimeni

    Can you give me any information about Eritrean based Albero Polimeni, his workshop, or his sales infrastructure. He was active in, World War Two and the early 50’s, and he sold cigarette lighters, cases, ashtrays, and aeroplane brooches to soldiers in North Africa. The only information I have is from an empty box. He was a prominent designer in the Art Deco style that is prevalent in the regions architecture especially in Asmara, the Art Deco capital of Eritrea, on the Red Sea. His pieces were not signed but some had an inscription, Patent Pending.

    E.g.
    Does Via Baldassare still exist?
    Was Polimeni also an architect?
    Are there any records of him?
    Does anyone remember him?
    Where do you suggest I go to find information about him and his operation?

    I have seen some empty boxes that appear to be containers of manufactured "Trench Art" lighters. They were marked thus including some Arabic writing.
    GEST. ZOCCOLI- TIP. CICERO
    TIP A TYPE
    ALBERO POLIMENI
    FABBRICA ACCENDISIGARI
    CIGARETTE-LIGHTERS FACTORY
    FABRIQUE DE BRIQUETS
    ASMARA
    Via Baldassare
    Orero



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  • RE: RE: Asmara, Eritrea/Kagnew Station (US Army Security Agency Field Station)

    by GordonJoy Online Now Sep 3, 2006 at 11:22 AM

    The Lost World of Albero Polimeni

    Can you give me any information about Eritrean based Albero Polimeni, his workshop, or his sales infrastructure. He was active in, World War Two and the early 50’s, and he sold cigarette lighters, cases, ashtrays, and aeroplane brooches to soldiers in North Africa. The only information I have is from an empty box. He was a prominent designer in the Art Deco style that is prevalent in the regions architecture especially in Asmara, the Art Deco capital of Eritrea, on the Red Sea. His pieces were not signed but some had an inscription, Patent Pending.

    E.g.
    Does Via Baldassare still exist?
    Was Polimeni also an architect?
    Are there any records of him?
    Does anyone remember him?
    Where do you suggest I go to find information about him and his operation?

    I have seen some empty boxes that appear to be containers of manufactured "Trench Art" lighters. They were marked thus including some Arabic writing.
    GEST. ZOCCOLI- TIP. CICERO
    TIP A TYPE
    ALBERO POLIMENI
    FABBRICA ACCENDISIGARI
    CIGARETTE-LIGHTERS FACTORY
    FABRIQUE DE BRIQUETS
    ASMARA
    Via Baldassare
    Orero



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  • RE: Asmara, Eritrea/Kagnew Station (US Army Security Agency Field Station)

    by GualEri Online Now Oct 12, 2006 at 11:12 AM

    I was just in Asmara in May. Kagnew Station is still there, housing the military folks. My dad used to also work there (a civilian Eritrean) during the years you mentioned. After the US left, it was used by the Ethiopian government to house their military families, and it looks like the tradition continues. I don't believe it's hard to get inside. However, the government is very restrictive when it comes to foreigners, especially Americans.

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