Warsaw, 27 November 1945. Investigating Judge Alicja Germasz interviewed the person named below as a witness. Having advised the witness of the criminal liability for making false declarations and of the significance of the oath, the judge took an oath from the witness, who then testified as follows:
|Name and surname||Jan Wiśniewski|
|Date of birth||26 April 1902|
|Parents’ names||Paweł and Anna|
|Place of residence||Warsaw, Marszałkowska Street 14, flat 70|
|Occupation||consultant with the Warsaw Reconstruction Bureau|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
On 4 August 1944 – due to the fact that the house at Marszałkowska Street 7, in which I lived, had begun to burn – I moved together with other residents to the neighboring house at Marszałkowska Street 11. We all took shelter in a shed that stood in the courtyard of that house.
At about five, the Germans and “Ukrainians” arrived there and ordered everybody out. They took us to the opposite side of the street and further along to the corner of Litewska Street. There they separated the women from the men. The women were marched in the direction of Zbawiciela Square, while the men were detained at Litewska Street. Both Litewska and Oleandrów streets were lined with gendarmerie and SS men. We were all ordered to lie on the ground, facing the pavement. Those who refused to comply were immediately beaten by the “Ukrainians”. While lying there, we were searched one by one and robbed of watches, rings and other valuables. There were some 80 of us.
Lying on the ground, I saw “Ukrainians” lift up the men they had just searched by the collar and lead them to the other side of the street, to the corner of Marszałkowska and Oleandrów streets, and further into Oleandrów Street. The men were led one by one by a “Ukrainian”, and then a shot could be heard; next, the “Ukrainian” would return to fetch another man. Some five “Ukrainians” were walking to and fro in this manner.
When my turn came, I was also hauled up by the collar, and a “Ukrainian”, still holding on to my collar, led me into Oleandrów Street, to the immediate vicinity of Anc’s Pharmacy. The pharmacy was burning from the Marszałkowska Street side, and was already burnt out from the side of Oleandrów Street. I was placed in front of a basement which was no longer burning (on Oleandrów Street), with my face to the wall. The “Ukrainian”, who stood behind my back, shouted at me, “Jump!” Then I jumped into the basement, and at the same time he fired a shot; the bullet pierced my right arm.
On finding myself in the basement, I saw that I had landed on people who were lying there – there were some ten of them. The majority of them were already dead or in their death throes; I could hear their hoarse groans. I stayed there for some time, watching new people falling down, each after a single shot.
Then I went through the basements in the direction of Marszałkowska Street. On my way, under the windows of a burning basement, I saw piles of burning corpses; there were several dozen of them at least. I myself stayed in a small basement which was no longer on fire, and I saw from the window that the “Ukrainians” were still leading men from Litewska Street to Oleandrów Street and I still heard single shots.
Next I went to the courtyard, where I ran into Władysław Tymiński (27 years old, I don’t know his current address), who at the time had been working in [illegible] at Marszałkowska Street 11/13. The two of us went down to the basements situated on the opposite side of the stairwell from Anc’s Pharmacy, on the side of Oleandrów Street. In that basement we saw a burning pile of corpses. The bodies were arranged on the ground and covered with boards, which in turn were covered with another layer of corpses and so on, and all these layers were on fire. There were both male and female corpses, some 30–40 bodies. Several bodies lay separately on the ground by the pile. All these people wore civilian clothes, none of them wore any military badges. I would like to emphasize that the basement itself wasn’t in flames, only the pile of corpses was burning.
Then, having parted with Tymiński, I returned to Anc’s Pharmacy. There I hid in the toilet, which was already burnt out. I stayed there for two days and two nights. During the day I heard machine gun salvos from the direction of Marszałkowska Street and single shots from the direction of Oleandrów Street. I heard the screaming and groaning of Poles, cursing of the “Ukrainians”, and also the sound of falling bodies. I realized that the executions were still taking place. At one point I heard some man exclaim, “Spare me!” At night I heard the yelling and laughing of drunk “Ukrainians”, coming from the street, and felt a great heat from burning fires. I would like to emphasize that at that time the basement was no longer on fire.
I inferred from the sounds that corpses were still being burned by throwing incendiary materials into the basements, because I would hear the rap of some object against the floor followed by a hiss and increasing waves of heat.
Two days later I went to the sixth floor of the house in which the pharmacy was located; I was hiding there with three people I had just met: Zdzisław Michalik (37 years old), Antoni Dudek (16 years old), and the same Tymiński who I had met before (I don’t know their addresses).
We stayed in the burnt-out flat until 7 November 1944, and I have no idea what was happening downstairs at this time. I heard only the sound of fighting, and sometimes voices of “Ukrainians”. Michalik told me that he had been taken from the Church of the Savior to Anc’s Pharmacy and tasked with throwing corpses into the basement. At one point he noticed that one of the “Ukrainians” was aiming his gun at him, and so he jumped into the basement, where he spent several hours lying under the corpses. He fled from there only when he noticed that the corpses were being set on fire. Antoni Dudek was led from Oleandrów Street to Anc’s Pharmacy, where he was shot by the “Ukrainians” who were carrying out the execution and escaped them jumping into the basement.
The report was read out.
I would like to add that as a result of the wound I sustained, to this day I have limited use of my arm.