Leon Solowiejczyk in the Polish Army

Leon Solowiejczyk in the Polish Army
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  • Photo taken in:
    Lublin
    Year when photo was taken:
    1944
    Country name at time of photo:
    Poland
    Country name today:
    Poland
This is a photo of me and some friends from the Polish Army. I don?t remember their names. The only thing I remember is the fact that the first man from left is called Wisniewski. The photo was taken in Lublin in 1944. I don?t remember who took it. In 1944 I went to a petty officers' course in Zytomierz. It was still 1944. It was like an officers' school, but you didn't get an officer's rank. It was a six-week course. There they'd say, 'Although I can't write, I can't read, I can speak.' I later learned these courses were modeled after Pilsudski's 1st Division. I graduated from the course, but didn't receive an officer's rank. There was a political officer there, Michalak, he was from Cracow. I went to see him and told him I wasn't fit to be an officer, because of that leg and that accent. I never hid the fact that I was Jewish. Anyway, not with my accent. My name, Solowiejczyk, was well known there. Because of that uncle Abram, who used to sell horses. So I knew my place, I knew I'd finally get a disability pension anyway. Although I could have done whatever I wanted. I was held in high esteem. I was known for being able to arrange things that others weren't able to do. They later moved us to Lublin, to officers' training school. We were quartered in Majdanek. There we found corpses which were still warm. It was dangerous there. If a soldier didn't come back in the evening, we'd go looking for him. We'd find him in a ditch, undressed. The Ukrainians didn't care if you were Jewish or not, if they needed a uniform they'd undress you and kill you. I arrived in Lodz in 1945, in February.

Interview details

Interviewee: Leon Solowiejczyk
Interviewer:
Judyta Hajduk
Month of interview:
September
Year of interview:
2005
Lodz, Poland

KEY PERSON

Leon Solowiejczyk
Year of birth:
1923
City of birth:
Dzisna
Country name at time of birth:
Poland
Occupation
after WW II:
Professional soldier

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