From recordings made by the Imperial War Museum London.
Available on this web link: https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections/item/object/80016763
Polish civilian teacher in Baranowicz, Poland, September 1939 to April 1940; deportation from Poland to Soviet Union, April 1940 to April 1943; i
iNmate in Ashkhabad Prison, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic, April 1943;
Escaped from Soviet Union to Iran, 1943
Background in Włodawa, Congress Poland, Imperial Russian Empire and Poland, 1907-1939: family;
Conditions during First World War in Imperial Russia;
Education in Poland, 1919;
Flight of refugees from advancing Bolsheviks in 1920;
Teacher training in Poland during 1920s.
Recollections of period as civilian teacher in Baranowicze, Poland, 1939-1940:
Entry of Soviet Army in Baronowicze, 17/9/1939;
Attitude of local Byelorussians to arrival of Soviet Army;
Impressions of Soviet Army troops, 9/1939;
Emptying of shops of goods in Baronowicze after 17/9/1940;
Soviet requisitioning of family home.
Arrest and sentencing of her husband by Soviet authorities;
Food and clothing taken to prison for her husband, late 1939;
Selling possessions, winter 1939-1940;
Teaching in Baronowicz, 2/1940-3/1940;
Deportations of 'rich' Poles, 2/1940.
Aspects of deportation from Baronowicze, Poland to Soviet Union, 4/1941:
Night raid by Soviet Army and militia, 10/4/1940;
Start of train journey eastwards.
Provision of boiled water and other rations for deportees;
Crossing Ural Mountains;
Impressions of conditions in Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, 4/1940;
Suicide of Polish officer's wife under train.
Recollections of period as deportee in Soviet Union, 1940-1942:
Arrival in Petropavlovsk area in Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic;
Allocation to work on collective farm.
Arrival at the Meat and Milk Collective Farm;
Description of collective farm buildings and their functions;
Inconvenience of cooking arrangements for families;
Attempt to obtain teaching job;
Accommodation in former cow shed and infestation of lice;
Start of work hand-weeding wheat field;
Drinking water from pond in field;
How mother received permission to live with her on collective farm;
Bed bug infestation;
Son's suffering from diarrhoea;
Arrival of food parcels from Poland, 1940.
Attempt to obtain doctors' certificate for septic hand;
Start of work milking cows and how this affected her hands and arms;
Re-allocation to sorting grain/seeds;
Privileges of milk maid;
Construction of house;
Presence of Iranians and Armenians on collective farm and their jobs;
Preparing fuel for winter, 1940-1941;
State control of information about outside world getting into collective farm;
Receiving news of German attack on Soviet Union and amnesty for Polish deportees, 6/1941;
How husband was sent to pick cotton on collective farm in Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic;
Struggle husband had to return to her and physical condition he was in on arrival.
Husband's job delivering grain and meat quotas on collective farm;
Pilfering of state grain quota and how it spoiled grain in store;
Receiving permission to leave collective farm, 7/1942;
Preparations to leave collective farm.
Recollections of journey from Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic to Ashkhabad, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic, 1942-1943:
Incident of Kazakhs arrested for stealing wood and lighting fire in field;
Bribing of militia to leave Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic, 8/1942;
Nature of goods for sale in market;
Encounter with Finnish soldier on train who became protector of her family;
Arrival at Tashkent;
Polish stowaway on train to Tashkent.
Circumventing bureaucracy at Tashkent Railway Sttation;
Arrival at Yangi-Yul and attempt of gang of youths to rob her;
Discovery that last Polish forces had left Yangi-Yul;
Failure to obtain aid from Jewish orphanage at Yangi-Yul;
Fighting amongst crowds to get on trains at Yangi-Yul;
Fight with thief on train at Yangi-Yul;
Obtaining help from Russian woman to get on train for Ashkhabad;
Making contact with Polish forces at Ashkhabad;
Disposal of last roubles to friend left at collective farm;
Impatience to cross border into Iran;
Liquidation of camp at Ashkhabad and threat of total destitution;
Employment as teacher of Polish children in Ashkhabad orphanage, 9/1942;
Refusal of authorities to let her mother leave Soviet Union.
Conditions in orphanage, winter 1942-1943;
Demand of People's Commissariat of NKVD that she take a Soviet passport.
Aspects of period as inmate in Ashkhabad Prison, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union, 1943:
Imprisonment by People's Commissariat NKVD, 4/1943;
Conditions in prison;
Relations between prisoners;
Her varying morale in prison;
Personal searches in prison.
Trial for charges of living in Ashkhabad without passport and sentence received;
How she was freed from prison.
Aspects of journey from Ashkhabad, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union to Iran, 1943:
Threat to orphanage from robber gangs;
Arrest of staff at Polish orphanage;
Journey from Ashkhabad to Iranian border;
Confiscation of her Polish rings and Soviet gold at border;
Prior recollection of referendum in Baronowicze to annex eastern Poland into Soviet territory;
Arrival of her family in Mashhad, Iran;
Story of how her mother was released from Ashkhabad Prison and made her way back to Poland.
Copyright: Polkowski family