On 15 October 1947 in Kraków, Deputy Prosecutor from the Tenth Region of the Prosecutor’s Office of the District Court in Kraków with its seat in Kraków, Radwański (MA), with the participation of a reporter, Antoni Poźniczek (MA), pursuant to Article 20 of the provisions introducing the Code of Criminal Procedure, heard the person named below as a witness, without taking an oath. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Michalina Jędrusiak|
|Date of birth||29 September 1908|
|Parents’ names||Franciszek and Elżbieta Kuś|
|Place of residence||Kraków, Krowoderska Street 17|
|Relationship to the parties||none|
I stayed in the Auschwitz camp, in Birkenau, from May 1942 to August 1944. From August 1944 to May 1945 I worked in the plane factory in Dresden.
From among the Auschwitz crew I remember Mandl, Brandl, and Szczurek. Mandl was the commandant of the women’s camp. She carried out all the selections herself, unassisted. She often came to the camp and declared that a given number of women must be chosen to the crematorium on that day.
In 1943, I was down with typhus and I was lying in the sickroom. One day, Polish doctors told us to get discharged from the sickroom because all sick people were to be burnt. Other prisoners and I, although we were gravely ill, left the sickroom and from then on were lying in the barrack. One day, when the prisoners went to work, Mandl came to the barrack and ordered an additional roll call – a selection. She chose the most seriously ill women, including me, and sent us to block 25, from which all transports to the crematorium were sent. I stood just next to the gate and cried. My friends saw this and, taking advantage of the fact that the German who watched us wasn’t paying attention, snatched me and hid me in the barrack. They put a corpse in my place, so the number of people who were to be sent to the crematorium added up. I want to emphasize that Mandl carried out the selection completely alone, and it was up to her whether to send someone to the crematorium or let her stay in the camp.
I also witnessed how a Jewish prisoner whose name I didn’t know snatched a pair of boots from the warehouse. Mandl saw this and shot the woman. For the slightest transgression, she beat the prisoner about the head with a cane so violently that the prisoner would bleed. She sent many prisoners to the punitive unit. During one selection in August 1943, Mandl sent a prisoner whose surname I didn’t know to the crematorium. The woman’s daughter asked Mandl to spare her mother. Mandl struck that woman with a cane on her head so hard that the blood came streaming down, and sent both the mother and the daughter to the crematorium.
Brandl served as head of the bathhouse and the clothing storeroom. For the slightest transgression, she would trash the prisoner about the head with a cane. I myself received a drubbing from her for wearing an additional sweater, and what is more is that she punished me with kneeling for three hours with a brick in each hand. Brandl often took part in selections. The prisoners earmarked for death tried to save themselves by means of escape from the bathhouse. I often saw Brandl shoot at these women, and I also saw wounded prisoners.
Szczurek often came to our camp, but I don’t know what functions he held. As far as I could guess, he was responsible for carrying out inspections. One day the prisoners made a fire behind the barracks to cook some food. Szczurek noticed it and shot in our direction, wounding one of the prisoners in such a way that she died on the following day.
In April 1943, we worked in Budy at digging ditches. One day when we were passing by a ditch filled with water, we began to fetch it, because there wasn’t any water in our camp. Szczurek saw this and said something to the guards, who then set their dogs on us. There was a commotion and a scuffle with the dogs, and then Szczurek began to shoot at us. He shot eight prisoners, and a few women, including me, were bitten by the dogs.
I often saw Szczurek escorting transports of prisoners destined for burning in the crematorium.