Warsaw, 15 September 1949. A member of the Main Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes in Poland, Norbert Szuman (MA), interviewed 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 an Grudzień
Date and place of birth 22 December 1904 in Łaskarzew, Garwolin county
Names of parents Onufry and Weronika, née Załęczna
Occupation of the father forester
State affiliation and nationality Polish
Religious affiliation Roman Catholic
Education four grades at an elementary school
Occupation building yard worker
Place of residence Warsaw, Grójecka Street 204, flat 1
Criminal record none

When the Warsaw Uprising broke out, I was in town, at Unii Lubelskiej Square. As the shooting began, I sought shelter in the gate of the house at Bagatela Street 11. Two dead Germans were lying in this gate and in the courtyard. The house was taken up by the insurgents, but they soon retreated. Shortly afterwards six SS-men entered the house in which I had taken shelter, and they led all the residents to the courtyard. The men, including me, were placed by the wall. Fearing execution, I jumped to the basement together with some man from Bydgoszcz whom I did not know. We got through the basements to the adjacent house, no. 13. On the evening of the same day, 1 August 1944, the house at Bagatela Street 11 was set on fire, but first the residents had been led out by the Germans.

On the night of 1/2 August, some resident from the house at Bagatela Street 11 got to the house at Bagatela Street 13 and told us that all residents who had been taken from Bagatela Street 11 had been executed in the Jordan garden at the corner of Bagatela Street and Aleje Ujazdowskie. Indeed, on the morning of 2 August I saw from the flat on the fourth floor at Bagatela Street 13 that German soldiers were executing civilians. A large pyre was burning in the middle of the Jordan garden, and as I saw, the bodies of the executed people were being incinerated on it. A house perpendicular to Aleje Ujazdowskie was lined with some thirty fully-dressed men and four German soldiers were executing them with a shot to the back of the head. The wall of the house against which they were executed was splattered with blood. Immediately after the execution, the bodies of the men were thrown onto the burning pyre. A group of men in prison clothes was occupied with the burning. The entire execution site was surrounded by armed Germans. When one group was executed and thrown into the fire, another group of convicts was brought from the direction of aleja Szucha. There was about half an hour to one hour break between executions, and the groups numbered between thirty and about a hundred people. During the first days, I saw that women were also executed, though in separate groups, but I did not notice any executions of little children, although sometimes I saw executions of, judging by appearance, teenage boys.

I watched the executions day after day. On the third day, I think, I noticed that the convicts had to undress before the execution. After the execution I saw the Germans search the clothes of the victims and take the things they had found away with them. I have an impression that at first the clothes of the executed people were also burnt.

As I have already mentioned, the executions took place every single day. Until Saturday, the executions lasted from morning to evening (by Saturday, I mean 5 August).

On Saturday 5 August at about15:00, German soldiers and "Ukrainians" entered our house and the adjacent one, ie. Bagatela Street 13 and 15. The residents were called on to leave the houses under threat of execution. All people except for me, Henryk Baranowski, Stefan Stelmański, caretaker of the house and one more man whom I did not know were led out, and the five of us hid in the basements. Both houses were set on fire on the same day. We stayed in the basements for two or three days. In the meantime, the caretaker and his friend hid separately or left. Anyway, just the three of us remained: Baranowski, Stelmański and I. After two or three days of hiding out in the basement, taking advantage of the fact that the house was no longer on fire, we moved to the attic of the house at Bagatela Street 13. I remained there until 14 January 1945, while Baranowski and Stelamański stayed until 17 January, the day when Warsaw was liberated.

I think that we first inhabited the attic on about 8 August. On the same day we resumed observation of the execution site, i.e. the Jordan garden. We noticed that the Germans were no longer burning bodies of the victims on the premises of the garden, but in a burnt-out wing of a house at Aleje Ujazdowskie. The convicts were standing in lines against this house; they had to undress, approach the wall in line and lie down. The Germans executed them one by one. When one line was executed, another approached the wall – and the process was repeated until the entire group was murdered. Then the prisoners threw the corpses of the executed people into a furnace inside the burnt down building.

I noticed, however, that at the time – that is approximately since 8 August – the executions were no longer mass executions to the extent which I had observed in the first days, that is up until 5 August. Then, one group was executed after another – one might say that a dozen or so groups like that had been executed on a daily basis. But now, after 8 August, one or two groups comprising some several dozen people were executed per day, sometimes even after one or two days without any executions. Only men were executed. I also noticed that their clothes were no longer burnt. I did not observe what was done with them as my field of vision was partially obscured by the houses on the even-numbered side of Bagatela Street.

Approximately in the middle of September, I cannot give an exact date, the executions became more frequent again. They lasted for some two or three days. Again it was men who were executed, and as always they had to undress before the execution. Then the number of executions decreased again, and about the turn of September and October they came to a stop. Afterwards it was more peaceful. Still, however, we could observe the action of setting whole housing estates on fire, we saw and heard houses being blown up. The Germans did not come to our house as a rule. Only once – I remember that it was on 1 November (we had a calendar so I am able to provide the date) – they arrived at our house with two carts and for a few days they were taking away various things. We felt quite safe at the attic – we destroyed all ways of access to the attic or else covered them with rubble, collected foodstuffs from abandoned flats which were to last us until March, and got water from the bathtubs at first and from melting snow in the winter. We even had a stove there, which we stoked at night and used to cook hot meals. Towards the end of November we noticed that the Germans were escorting groups of men from the direction of Rakowiecka Street. Later, as the scene repeated, we realized that these people were used for labor.

I managed to get to one of such groups which, on 14 January 1945, was going to work on Pole Mokotowskie from the side of Belweder. I gave the reason for my move that I had lost my own group. After a day’s work we were escorted to Włochy. I hid in Włochy until 17 January, when – taking advantage of the liberation of Warsaw – I returned to Bagatela Street. Baranowski and Stelmański were just leaving their hiding place, as they had found out about the new situation. We parted ways then and I have never met them again.

As far as I know, both of them were Jews, but they had Kennkarte issued for the names of Baranowski and Stelmański.

Henryk Baranowski, who claimed to be a chemistry engineer, would be about 40 years old today, and Stefan Stelmański, allegedly a physician, was older – he would be over 60 years old now.

Until the Warsaw Uprising, Baranowski had lived in Milanówek with gardener Wiśniewski, in a villa called “Warszawianka.”

In August this year, that is 1949, I was in Milanówek, where I learned that as early as in 1945 Baranowski and Stelmański had left for western Poland, in an unknown direction.

At this point, the report was concluded and read out.