Franciszek Gabrylewicz
Class 5a
Wisznice, 19 June 1946

My most important wartime experiences

It was [in] 1942. When I went to fetch wood from the forest, I saw a lot of bunkers. The Soviets were staying there, as the Poles didn’t have any weapons. They asked me if I knew where the guns were. Then they made the rounds of the villages and got their guns. At first they only looted the countryside. Later on they damaged cars, mined the roads and blew up trains, destroyed police stations and attacked the police. The gendarmes and the policemen launched numerous manhunts in the forest, clashing with the partisans. Then the latter would take over the stations and impose their own rule.

When the front was approaching, many people from towns and villages fled into the woods or were staying in trenches; some buried boxes and others kept their tools hidden in the fields. They took their cows and horses to the forest. When the fighting began the Soviets drove the Germans away, and the latter burned many larger objects during their retreat.