Sala Świadectw

Wanda (Jabłońska) Gillon - Amnesty and leaving the camp

Wanda describes how the families grouped their valuables in order to pay for transportation to the southern USSR.

Wanda (Jabłońska) Gillon - Cooking and food provisions

Wanda describes the stove in the center of the barrack that was used for cooking, and the rotten vegetables they would be given.

Stefan Slawek - School and life in Kresy

Stefan describes how the schools were set up in his area. He also discusses home life and how his father provided a good life for them.

Kazimierz Karwowski - Life in Africa

Kazimierz explains how communication between the soldiers and their families was a priority, and describes life for them in Africa.

Kazimierz Karwowski - Surviving and thriving

Kazimierz states that they always believed they would survive and leave the USSR. They survived and went on to lead productive lives.

Kazimierz Karwowski - Describes WC and bath house

Kazimierz describes the amenities in the camp.

Henryka (Zalewska) Żukowska - Brother killed in Warsaw

Describing how her brother was killed in Warsaw.

Henryka (Zalewska) Żukowska - Sister taken from the hospital

Describes the conditions on the train and how her sister’s condition worsened and she was taken from the train to a hospital.

Henryka (Zalewska) Żukowska - Russian told them to take all

Henryka describes how a Russian soldier helped the family by telling them to bring as many things as possible. This helped them survive by having items to barter for food.

Stanisław Lasek - Brother and sister die on the trip south

Stan describes how his brother Wojciech died on the train and his body was thrown onto a cart – the family have no idea where he was buried. The next

Stanisław Lasek - Going south was a mistake

Stan explains how his father’s decision to take the family south was a mistake. In the north, they had access to mushrooms and berries in the forest that helped them

Stanisław Lasek - Home Schooling at the Camp

Stan explains how only the children of the camp staff were sent to school. Consequently, the women got together and started a home schooling program for the Polish children. They

Barbara (Wojcik) Wierzbicka - Father and 5 uncles in AK

Barbara describes how her father was part of the Home Army, along with 5 of her mother’s brothers. Her 5 uncles were all shot on the same day by the

Barbara (Wojcik) Wierzbicka - Not allowed to mention Siberia

Barbara describes how, when she grew up in post-war Poland, she could never mention that she had been deported to Siberia. School authorities would always make certain that she revised

Barbara (Wojcik) Wierzbicka - Child stolen by Russian lady

Barbara describes an event during her time in Siberia, when a Russian lady kidnapped her and kept her hidden for 2 weeks, while the whole camp looked for her.

Józek Jagiełło - Describes his fathers possessions that he received

Jozef lists the items that were among his father’s possessions, including a letter that his father had written to him but never got the chance to send.

Józek Jagiełło - Learning about his father possessions

Jozef contacts the Ministry of Defence in the UK and learns that they have his father’s possessions and that they will send them to him via Diplomatic post. Jozef is

Józek Jagiełło - Leaving Havera to farm

Jozef describes how incredibly lonely he was when he ended up alone on the farm, away from all his mates. Having a bike helped a bit because it allowed him

Józek Jagiełło - Going to Kiwi school

Jozef describes how difficult it was for him to leave the camp school and go to a native school in the area.

Józek Jagiełło - Banished from being an altar boy

Jozef describes being caught drinking the wine and being banned from being an altar boy as a result.

Józek Jagiełło - Boys make wine at Pahiatua

Jozef describes how he and his friends took to making wine from the berries that grew in abundance around the camp. The enterprise was not very successful.

Józek Jagiełło - Arriving at Pahiatua

Jozef describes their arrival at the camp in Pahiatua and how upset the adults were because it was surrounded by a barbwire fence. The camp had been a POW camp

Józek Jagiełło - Disembarking in Wellington

Jozef describes the scene when they arrived in Wellington and got off the ship. They were amazed at the number of people who came to greet them.

Józek Jagiełło - Endless Food

Jozef describes the crossing to New Zealand and how food was available to them around the clock. They were thrilled to take advantage of every morsel they could get.