22 March 1949 in Warsaw. A member of the Main Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, Norbert Szuman (MA), interviewed the person named below as an unsworn witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations and of the obligation to speak the truth, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Tadeusz Góralczyk|
|Date and place of birth||31 March 1914 in Warsaw|
|Parents’ names||Władysław and Franciszka, née Kosmal|
|Citizenship and nationality||Polish|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Belgijska Street 11, flat 27|
In the summer of 1943 I started working as a metalsmith for the German county gendarmerie, which was located at Dworkowa Street nos. 3 and 5, and at aleja Na Skarpie 1. The building at Dworkowa Street 3 had a signboard with the inscription “Gendarmerie – Unterkunft”. When I worked there, there were some 50 gendarmes at Dworkowa Street and in the other gendarmerie buildings. The latter also housed the command of the county gendarmerie, which apart from the detachment at Dworkowa Street also had stations throughout the county of Warsaw – among others in Jabłonna, Mińsk Mazowiecki, Sokołów, Otwock, and other townships throughout the entire county.
In the main, the building at Dworkowa Street provided accommodation for gendarmes, although there was also a small office in which two gendarmes worked. I know that a Polish woman, Maria Szymańska, currently residing at Dworkowa Street 3, was employed by one Bumnstadt, the gendarme who administered these buildings. The majority of the gendarmes worked at aleja Szucha, in the present-day building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
I remember that these gendarmes had orange stripes on their caps and lapels, and similar ones on their sleeves.
More or less in the beginning of 1944, the gendarmes at Dworkowa Street received a new commander (I didn’t know the surname of the previous one) – Oberstleuntnant Göde, a tall, ginger-haired man, around 50 years of age. Apart from him there was another German officer at Dworkowa Street, an SS man – as far as I know – with the rank of Hauptmann, one Bischer. It was said that he was a judge or a prosecutor. Bischer lived on Willowa Street and had the reputation of being a strict disciplinarian. He was of medium height, slim, with an oval face; at the time he was around 35 years old. As regards the other officers, I remember Hauptmann Lipscher, an Austrian, of medium height, red-haired and rather stout – he was in charge of all the gendarmerie stations in the county, and also of the blue police precincts in the county of Warsaw. Göde and Lipscher remained at Dworkowa Street until September 1944, while Bischer left Warsaw soon after the Uprising broke out.
Apart from the abovementioned, the following officers lived at Dworkowa Street and worked at aleja Szucha: Jacker, Ruippert, Litzenhammer, and a number of non-commissioned officers, of whom I remember one – Peidl (an Austrian).
My superiors at the workshop were two non-commissioned officers –Rosner and Nussler (both of whom perished in the Uprising).
I have just remembered the surname of one more officer from Dworkowa Street – Oberleutnant Peck, a tall, slim man, probably over 40 years old. I recollect that he had a large scar on the nape of his neck. In the beginning of the Uprising he suffered a serious injury to his arm in some accident, and left Warsaw in consequence.
More or less two weeks before the Uprising, the forces gathered at Dworkowa Street were bolstered by the arrival of gendarmes from county stations located on the other bank of the Vistula, while immediately before the Uprising broke out an additional detachment of some 50 motorized gendarmes – armed with, among other things, grenade launchers – and around 40 Vlasovtsy soldiers was added. Thus, before the Uprising there were some 200 – 250 gendarmes and Vlasovtsy soldiers at Dworkowa Street. Obertleutnant Göde continued as their general commander, holding this post throughout the Uprising.
I worked at Dworkowa Street from 8.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m., while I lived at Belgijska Street 11.
When the Warsaw Uprising broke out, I was at Dworkowa Street. Soon after, still on 1 August, I was joined by my wife and small child. The Germans kept me and my family at Dworkowa Street throughout the night from 1 to 2 August, however on 2 August they let us go home, saying that they had been informed of the Uprising and that it would be put down quickly, and also instructing me to report normally for work on the next day.
I got back to my home at Belgijska Street. This street was on the front line, from where the insurgents were firing upon Dworkowa Street. This state of affairs lasted until 3 August.
On 3 August at around 3.00 p.m. I heard a firefight of steadily increasing intensity, approaching us from the lower numbers on Belgijska Street; it was coming from the direction of Corazziego Street.
I ran out into the stairwell. Suddenly, I heard shouts in German – raus – and in Polish “everybody out, the house is on fire, come out into the street!” I went down to the gate with my wife and three children. In the gateway I saw three Vlasovtsy soldiers and a gendarme from Dworkowa Street, one Pusch (?), who were shooting at those coming out of the building and walking into the gateway – a few bodies of residents from our house were already lying there. The house was ablaze, the fire had been started in the shops. In the gateway, I started calling to Pusch (who, being a Volksdeutscher, spoke Polish): – Pusch, what are you doing! The women started begging him not to shoot at the residents, while I explained that there were no insurgents on the property. Pusch sent the Vlasovtsy soldiers out into the street, seconds after a tank had passed along it in the direction of Puławska Street.
Pusch ordered the women to run, and led me – together with my wife and children – out into the street. The houses on both sides of Belgijska Street were on fire, and there were a dozen or so bodies in front of our house.
Pusch led me to the corner of Belgijska and Puławska streets. I saw Obertleutnant Göde standing there, surrounded by officers from Dworkowa Street. A tank drove up Puławska Street in the direction of Boryszewska Street, shooting at the houses located further back; it was accompanied by gendarmes and Vlasovtsy soldiers.
The officers – gendarmes – recognized me as their metalsmith and ordered that I, together with my wife and children, be brought to Dworkowa Street. A group of some 50 Poles – men, women and children – were already gathered there.
The gendarmes placed us in the basement of the building at number 3 Dworkowa Street.
We were employed at performing various types of work – digging trenches, carrying sand, and breaking down walls in order to make passageways between houses. The women worked in the kitchen.
After a few days, while I was busy unloading ammunition from vehicles at Dworkowa Street, I noticed that the Germans were leading the civilians residents out of the houses at Puławska Street 49 and 51, and directing them along Dworkowa Street towards Belwederska Street. At a guess, the civilians numbered a few dozen. As the last people were walking down the stairs, a gendarme, a Volksdeutscher by the surname of Malicki (I knew him from Dworkowa Street), fired a shot into the crowd. Another gendarme, Gajdus, joined in, shooting from his sub-machine gun. Soon, other gendarmes started shooting too, and the result was a massacre of the people from Puławska Street nos. 49 and 51.
The next day Malicki busied himself with finishing off the wounded from the previous day’s massacre, and also robbed the bodies of valuables.
In the beginning of the Uprising I saw gendarmes from Dworkowa Street making forays similar to the one in Belgijska Street. I know that they and the Vlasovtsy soldiers from Dworkowa Street carried out the massacre in Olesińska Street.
Later on, when the immediate neighborhood had been burned down, the gendarmes from Dworkowa Street adopted a more or less defensive posture – at least in the daytime. I don’t know what went on at night, because they locked us up in the basement.
In the beginning of September 1944 things changed at Dworkowa Street. All of the gendarmes whom I had known from before the Uprising, together with their commanders, left Warsaw, supposedly to stations in other parts of the county. The Vlasovtsy soldiers had already been withdrawn from Dworkowa Street towards the end of August.
The county gendarmes were replaced at Dworkowa Street by a detachment of some 80 Schutzpolizei from Berlin. They were commanded by a Leutnant whose surname I don’t know. As I managed to determine, this unit limited itself solely to defense.
This state of affairs lasted until the capitulation of Mokotów. If I remember correctly, another execution was held at Dworkowa Street – opposite aleja Na Skarpie – on that day. Having been informed by the caretaker of the house at no. 49 Puławska Street, Anna Ażgin, that the Germans were shooting Poles in Dworkowa Street, I went up to the gate of the house at Dworkowa Street 7. From there I saw that a large group of men were standing near the barbed wire on the other side of Dworkowa Street, their arms raised, while a group of women were kneeling next to the wall of number 5 Dworkowa Street, facing the wall and with their arms raised too.
After a search, during which all the identity documents of these people were thrown out into the street, officers of the Schutzpolizei from Dworkowa executed every one of the men. After a few hours the women were led away to Puławska Street.
Still on the same day, the Germans ordered us to bury the murdered victims in a pit near the pond at Dworkowa Street.
I don’t know how many bodies there were.
On the next day I saw one of the Schutzpolizei officers execute three men in Dworkowa Street. These men were accompanied by four women, whom the Germans led away somewhere. This group of seven people looked as if they had come out from the sewers.
On the next day, that is 28 September, the Germans released me and two of my children, and also other Poles who were working for them, sending us in the direction of Piaseczno. The caretaker, Szymański, remained at Dworkowa Street 3, while Jakubowski, the caretaker of the property at aleja Na Skarpie 1, stayed at that address together with some other people whose surnames I don’t know.
I would also like to add that in October 1944, while I was in Piaseczno, I ran into Hauptmann Lipscher – the gendarme from Dworkowa Street – and also other gendarmes known to myself, who at the time were serving at the station in Piaseczno. Afterwards I found my wife in Pruszków, and stayed there until the liberation. Lipscher and his gendarmes were also there, and they fled west only the day before Pruszków was taken.
At this point the report was brought to a close and read out.