On 10 May 1949 in Warsaw, a member of the Main Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, Norbert Szuman (MA), heard the person named below as an unsworn witness. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Anna Kręczyńska, née Konarska|
|Date and place of birth||6 July 1886, Warsaw|
|Names of parents||Józef and Michalina, née Orzugowska|
|Occupation of the father||craftsman|
|State affiliation and nationality||Polish|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
|Education||six-grade finishing school, sewing school|
|Occupation||old age pensioner|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Żoliborz district, Śmiała Street 10, flat 3|
When the Warsaw Uprising broke out, I was in my flat at Rakowiecka Street 9. My house was situated opposite the barracks and hence it was in German hands from the first day of the uprising. On 4 August 1944 at 10.00 a.m. I saw, from the windows of my flat looking out on Sandomierska and Rakowiecka streets (it was a corner house), that the Germans were throwing people out of the neighboring houses, leading the women with children to the barracks, and the men to the wall at Rakowiecka Street opposite our house. Shortly afterwards, a group of helmeted SS men armed with axes and grenades stormed into our house. A moment later, tailor Dębczak, his wife, child and their neighbor, Mrs. Kwiatkowska – the owner of a grocery in our house – came running to my flat on the second floor. Dębczak told me that the Germans had stormed into their flats on the ground floor and set them on fire. Therefore, I went downstairs to see what was going on. On the first floor, near the door to Mrs. Rosińska’s flat, the bodies of two young people who had been killed by the Germans were lying on the stairs (I don’t know their surnames, I know that one of them was a tenant of Mrs. Rosińska). I returned quickly to my flat, in order to take my husband and a few things, get dressed and go to the shelter. My husband, Zygmunt Kręczyński, a professor of chemistry in the Rotwand and Wawelberg School, director of TKT [Technical Courses Society], was already waiting for me in the hallway. Apart from my husband, there was also engineer Łazarewicz, a resident on aleja Niepodległości, who had not managed to get to his house before the outbreak of the uprising. Both his wife and an office worker from the Security Printing Works, who also lived with us at the time, had already gone to the shelter. Therefore, I went hurriedly to my bedroom in order to get dressed. Dębczak, his family, and Kwiatkowska were all sitting in the bathroom, which had an entrance from the bedroom. Suddenly, I heard a horrible commotion, noise, and shooting. I could not determine where the shots were coming from. I saw that the Germans were already on our floor, in the flat of our neighbors. A moment later they charged into the bedroom. They did not notice me, but I cannot say why. Maybe their attention was distracted by my paintings and furniture, which were indeed very beautiful (my husband was a patron of culture). I took the opportunity to run out to the hallway to see what had happened to my husband. When I came he was already dead. The body of Łazarewicz was lying next to him. I took the suitcase with our belongings and left the flat. In the doorway of the adjacent flat I saw the dead tenant of my neighbor, lawyer Krell. Even earlier I had heard shooting from my bathroom. The Germans had been shooting at the family of Dębczak. Kwiatkowska and Dębczak’s child managed to survive.
I went downstairs to the shelter. The Germans ordered everyone to go out to the street. There was a blind old lady lying in the shelter who did not know what was going on. I saw that one of the soldiers shot her when she said something to him.
When I entered the barracks, our house was already on fire.
From the barracks, in a group of some two thousand people I think (the hall in which we had been gathered was indeed very large), I was marched by the Germans to the Gestapo in aleja Szucha. There, in the courtyard of the Ministry of Education, we had to stand until evening in constant fear of execution. The Germans were aiming their guns at us the whole time. After a few hours they began to check Kennkartes, and then separated the young women from the older ones and kept them in the courtyard. The older women, in turn, returned to the barracks. Among those who had to stay at aleja Szucha were Mrs. Kwiatkowska, with Dębczak’s child, and a daughter of the lawyer Krell. As far as I know, neither woman has returned to this day.
We spent two days and two nights in the barracks, and then we were released. Until 15 August I lived in the annex of the house at Rakowiecka Street 9, since the entire front of the house was burnt out. Together with the caretaker from our house, Władysław Królik, and a few women, we buried the victims of the execution of 4 August in our garden. On that day, nine people had been killed in our house. In the spring of 1945, the Polish Red Cross carried out an exhumation in our garden.
During my entire stay in the annex of the house at Rakowiecka Street 9 we were often attacked by the Germans and “Ukrainians,” who robbed us of all our valuables.
On 15 August 1944, the Germans threw us out from the house and told us to go together with the civilian populace from Rakowiecka Street to the Pruszków transit camp. However, I escaped from the transport and hid at first in Rakowiec for one day, then in Okęcie, and a week later I went by the EKD [Electric Commuter Rail] to Podkowa Leśna.
At this the report was concluded and read out.