Warsaw, 26 August 1948. Judge Halina Wereńko, a member of the District Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, interviewed 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||Zygmunt Marian Trószyński|
|Parents’ names||Mikołaj and Maria, née Rychter|
|Date of birth||4 December 1886 in Warsaw|
|Education||seminary and 2 philosophy courses|
|Citizenship and nationality||Polish|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Gdańska Street 6a|
|Occupation||priest of Marymont-Bielany parish, Congregation of the Marists|
During the German occupation I was the military parish priest at the St. George’s parish in the Citadel, appointed by the clerical authorities of the Underground Polish State. When the Warsaw Uprising broke out, I became the chaplain of district 22, manned by a Division of the Home Army commanded by colonel “Żywiciel” (subsequently renamed the 8th “Traugutt” Division). District 22 included four regions: 1) Żoliborz – commanded by “Żeglarz” (21st Children of Warsaw Regiment); 2) Marymont – commanded by cavalry captain “Żmija” (Adam Rzeszotarski – currently residing in Ciechanów). I don’t know the exact composition of individual units, but I do know that various platoons were attached to them, among others a few platoons commanded by cavalry captain “Gryf” – “Majewski” (real surname Mostowski, he perished in the hospital at Krechowiecka Street after this was occupied by the Germans on 30 September 1944); 3) Bielany – commanded by major “Serb” – “Żubr” (I don’t know his surname, he was in charge of the 36th Infantry Regiment); 4) Powązki – commanded by major “Żyrafa” (I don’t know his previous pseudonym, or his surname). In addition, there were a few sabotage platoons that were subordinate to the district commander. The order to commence fighting gave 5.00 p.m. on 1 August 1944 as the time to start the offensive, and 3.00 p.m. as the time to start issuing weapons.
In the vicinity of Wilsona Square and Inwalidów Square, the Uprising broke out prematurely, at around 2.00 p.m. Fighting commenced after a German patrol arrived on the scene and detained a few insurgents. When the Uprising broke out, the Germans were in control of the Central Institute of Physical Education, the Bielany monastery, the “Nauka i Praca” (Learning and Work) school at Marymoncka Street 66, the Propellers, Wood and Metal Products Factory, the “Blaszanka” (Metal Products Factory), the Gas School at Gdańska Street, the school at Kolektorska Street, the Institute of Chemistry, the Citadel, the artillery perimeter in Buraków, the school at Elbląska Street, and the Bema Fort.
In Marymont, the offensive was unsuccessful due to the insufficient concentration of insurgents. Before the insurgents had gathered, the Germans had set fire to the complex of houses at Marii Kazimiery, Skotnicka, and Międzychodzka streets. In Bielany, an attack was organized in the evening on the Central Institute of Physical Education from the forested (lower) side of Marymont and the west, from the direction of the roadway. This foray was unsuccessful, as were the attacks from the direction of Młociny and Wawrzyszew undertaken by partisan units from Kampinos. The units in Bielany withdrew towards Boernerowo, where they were decimated by the Germans, with some 60 soldiers from the University Legion of the 36th Infantry Regiment being killed. The remaining detachments from this region (Bielany), commanded by major “Serb”, withdrew towards Kampinos together with “Żywiciel” during the night from 1 to 2 August. In Żoliborz, the 21st Regiment attacked the Citadel, but after its attack was repulsed, it too withdrew towards Kampinos. Only major “Żmija” and a female sanitary patrol remained in Warsaw.
In Powązki, the concentration of insurgents was scattered and a great many people disappeared without a trace. The Germans burnt down Powązki in the first days of August (I don’t remember the exact date).
On 1 August in the afternoon I found myself at Potocka Street 35, right in between the fighting adversaries, and I was unable to reach the rallying point. In the evening, I went out with a sanitary patrol to collect the wounded from Bieniewicka Street. On the next day I was occupied with burying the dead and establishing contact with the remaining insurgent commanders, after which I returned to the church at Gdańska Street. On 2 August at around 6.00 p.m. both the street and the exit from the church were closed. The next day at around 11.00 a.m., dressed in my liturgical vestments, I went with the Holy Sacrament to the oil mill at Gdańska Street. The Germans did not shoot at me. At the time, the oil mill was not occupied by military forces – only the streets were being fired upon by the Germans. I used a telephone to contact Żoliborz and on 5 August, having received notification of “Żywiciel’s” return to Żoliborz, I proceeded there along the road leading through Potok and Dolny Żoliborz. “Żywiciel” took up positions in Żoliborz and sent patrols to Marymont, from where we received food supplies. I would then visit my parishioners in Marymont and celebrate Mass in private houses.
During this time I was informed by the civilian population of Marymont about the raping and pillaging being perpetrated by the “Ukrainians”. I heard that rapes were committed at Kolektorska Street near the school. In the area of Wiedeńska and Międzychodzka streets, I don’t remember the date, in the period between 6 and 20 August, the “Ukrainians” shot an insurgent whom they had captured unarmed, I don’t know his surname. During this period the movement of people had been stopped, for the Germans were firing upon both the streets and the plots, and there were many civilian casualties, particularly amongst the women. Only the commandant of the Gas School allowed women to go out for food for a period of two hours per day. In the course of their forays, the “Ukrainians” frequently burned down houses located away from the area of fighting, for example in the Potok meadows, and in the region of Szlachecka, Kołobrzeska, Morawska, Hozjusza, Ryska, and other streets. At the corner of Jana III and Międzychodzka streets one Zagórski, who had been guarding his house, was killed by the “Ukrainians”. Towards the end of August, the insurgents destroyed the school at Kolektorska Street, whereupon a German unit left the barracks at Gdańska Street.
Around 6 August German planes started dropping leaflets, the authors of which impersonated the command of the Home Army and general Bór. In the beginning of September leaflets were dropped calling upon the populace to leave the city.
On 14 September Marymont was bombed and shelled heavily, and thereafter German tanks and infantry units attacked in two groups: Wehrmacht detachments on the Vistula, along Kamedułów Street, and “Ukrainian” and SS detachments from the Central Institute of Physical Education in the direction of the oil mill, the loop at Rudzka Street, and the sewage treatment plant at Kaskada. The two attacking groups met up at Potocka Street. In the afternoon, the units of SS men and “Ukrainians” occupying Marymont carried out mass murders of the wounded and civilians at the following locations: at Rudzka Street 4, where some 20 wounded and members of staff were murdered at the insurgent first-aid post (details may be provided by one Józef, a rifleman – surname, address, unit unknown), at a few points along Marii Kazimiery Street, near the ponds and on sections of adjacent streets leading up to the ponds, at the corner of Gdańska and Kaskadowa streets, and in the municipal building of the water board authority at Potocka Street. I was not present during the executions, for at the time I was in the regional command post of major “Żmija”, but I heard the reports that he received from the scene of the battle.
I was present during the exhumations carried out in 1945 as the plenipotentiary of the Polish Red Cross for Warsaw North and witnessed that bodies were dug up at all of the locations that I have mentioned. Judging by the number of exhumed bodies and the quantity of death certificates issued in my parish, I would say that some 500 civilians were murdered on that day in my parish in the Marymont district.
Following the capture of Marymont, the SS men and “Ukrainians” forced the civilian population into the Bielański Forest, where the people were segregated and driven out of Warsaw. On the premises of the Central Institute of Physical Education, the escort assigned to the civilians would rape the women. I was informed of this by my parishioners who were present there. I don’t remember the surnames of the rape victims.
Once Marymont had been occupied, deliveries of food to Żoliborz were cut off, while the points at which water was collected – for the hospital administered by the sisters of the Order of the Resurrection, among others – were continuously under fire. On 17 September I was wounded and went to the hospital at Krechowiecka Street. On 29 September the Germans launched a concentrated attack on Żoliborz, and our hospital was captured on the next day; the capitulation of Żoliborz was signed in the evening.
I heard that on 1 October, in the vicinity of the church, the Vlasovtsy raped a few female nurses at the mobile first-aid post near Kozietulskiego Street, while during the night from 1 to 2 October in the “Nasz Dom” (Our House) hospital at aleja Zjednoczenia (Bielany, “Zdobycz Robotnicza” housing estate) a patrol of female nurses that had been sent to collect wounded Poles, commanded by Stefania Pol (currently residing at Grębałowska Street 11), was stopped at the “Ukrainian” command post, with three of the nurses being raped.
The Germans would evict civilians immediately after they occupied individual houses, sending them through St. Adalbert’s Church in the Wola district to the camp in Pruszków. The hospitals were evacuated somewhat later. Together with a sanitary patrol I went to the hospital in Bielany, from where I managed to escape from Warsaw and avoid the transit camp in Pruszków.
At this point the report was concluded and read out.