On 27 August in Oświęcim, a member of the Kraków District Commission for the Investigation of German Crimes, Municipal Judge Dr. Henryk Gawacki, upon written request of the first prosecutor of the Supreme National Tribunal, this dated 25 April 1947 (file no. NTN 719/47), in accordance with the provisions of and procedure provided for under the Decree of 10 November 1945 (Journal of Laws of the Republic of Poland No. 51, item 293) in connection with Art. 254, 107, 115 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, interviewed the prisoner of the Auschwitz concentration camp specified below as a witness, who testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Franciszek Tadeusz Myszkowski|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
|Citizenship and nationality||Polish|
|Place of residence||The Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum in Oświęcim|
As prisoner number 593 I was detained at Auschwitz I camp from 14 June 1940 to a day I no longer remember in October 1944, when I was transported with other prisoners to the camp in Barth, a subcamp subordinate to the concentration camp in Ravensbrück.
I was transported to Auschwitz with the first transport of Polish prisoners from Tarnów. First I went through a five or six-week quarantine, then I worked digging drainage ditches. At the end of 1940, I was assigned to the sewing room (Schneiderei). About six weeks after that, I was assigned to the carpenter’s shop on Lagerführer [camp leader] Fritsch’s orders.
A studio for sculptors and painters was established there and I worked in that place until the end of 1943. From that moment until the end of my stay at the Auschwitz camp, I worked at the photographer’s office (Erkennungsdienst) that belonged to the Political Department (Politische Abteilung). In this last place of work I was supervised by Hauptscharführer Bernard Walter and Unterscharführer Ernst Hofmann.
During quarantine I met SS-Oberscharführer Plagge who conducted “physical exercises” and “sport”, and also taught prisoners to sing German songs. Plagge always walked around with a stick in his hand, but I never saw him hit a prisoner. Two German kapos from the infamous 30 German inmates detained at Auschwitz were the ones who beat us during “sport”, “physical exercises” and “singing lessons”. They beat prisoners all over the body with sticks, for the slightest offences such as failing to do Plagge’s “exercises” properly or singing too quietly. Prisoners nicknamed Plagge “Fajeczka” [Little Pipe] because he always smoked a pipe.
Max Grabner, the head of the Political Department, often came to the photographer’s office (Erkennungsdienst) when I worked there. I never saw him beat or mistreat anybody. A political prisoner who worked in this office was shot on account of his communist beliefs. Following this incident, Grabner ordered all prisoners who worked in the photographer’s office to report suspicious behavior of the prisoners and inform him about everything that happened in the camp.
The report was read out. At this the hearing and the following report were concluded.