Hi Ken -
Yes, Poles were normally always in the minority in Kresy with
sometimes, depending on the area, Poles being represented by almost
half of the population. You will see this from the census or maps
showing population distribution. Some census figures are in my
article which were taken from Paul's site. Austro-Hungarian Empire
was the best (ha, ha) of the three partitioning powers, and every map
I've seen was in Polish too, but evidently there are some in German
or Polish and German by Austrian mapmakers. There were also German
(or Germanic) settlers, but where they lived, I don't know, and their
numbers were probably small.
Since Kresy was in Poland after 1918, I don't understand your school
report either--requesting that the kids be taught in Polish, but then
again--the Kresy portion of the map of Poland was in constant flux
for a while until the Polish-Russian war ended. Maybe it took a
little while for decisions or bearings to be made in certain areas?
The Soviets had everything planned to a T. You are right. Sickening.
--- In Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com
, "ken_fedzin" <ken.fedzin@n...>
> Hi All,
> The postings/discussion on the above subject certainly makes
> interesting reading of what was certainly a complex situation. My
> knowledge of the politics behind the deportations is extremely
> limited, but I'd like to add a few lay-mans observations around the
> subject if I may, based solely on what I've learned from research
> into my father's family and from this website. Some of these points
> have indeed been touched upon during the discussions.
> As mentioned, not all deportees were 'settlers' and/or ex-
> and their families, and there was undoubtedly a substantial number
> of Poles who had lived in the region for many years. My father and
> his siblings were born in Dawidkowce, south east of Czortkow
> (Cortkiv), from 1905 - 1922. You couldn't get much further east
> without being in Russia. My grandfather had a small farm there. My
> g.g.father came to the village from Siberia (before 1900) after
> being exiled from Warsaw during the 1863 Uprising.
> Maps from Austro Hungarian and Galicia times up until 1939 do
> give village names in Polish and Ukraine names appeared post WW11,
> which gives the impression of Polish domination in the region. But
> have a copy of a document from the village primary school census
> 1925-1933 (from Lviv archives), which is a list of pupils whose
> fathers requested that they be taught in the Polish language?? So
> what was going on then? Poles in the minority? Already Soviet
> influence/domination in the area? Maybe the earlier maps,
> from 'Polish times' were published prior to a gradual change in
> fortunes for Poles in the area?
> I was in the village in August last year and was lucky enough to
> find a Ukrainian man, Mr Bojczuk, who was a good friend of my
> father. He told me that Polish and Ukrainian children all went to
> the same school together and there were no problems between them.
> there was obviously an ethnic mix.
> I also have a document, via the 'Memorial' in Moscow, which states
> that the NKVD file on dad's family was commenced by the NKVD Dept.
> in Czortkow on 29 Dec.1939. Such files must have been made on
> many/all Polish families. Preparations for deportation were being
> According to Mr Bojczuk (who witnessed the events), when dad's
> family of 'peasant' farmers were deported in the first phase, on 10
> Feb 1940, a Ukraine family (who were being resettled from further
> east) were immediately put into the farm and it became part of
> the 'Collective Farm'.
> It appears to me that Moscow obviously had designs on the region
> some considerable period of time. Poles, of any background,
> populating cities,towns or villages, would naturally oppose any
> communist influence/threat or collectivisation and so therefore had
> to be removed. The Ethnic Cleansing of as many Poles as possible,
> as short a time as possible, had to be carried out in order for
> the 'Collectivisation' of agriculture and 'Communisation' of the
> region to succeed. Once this had been achieved, annexing the region
> would be relatively straightforward, and so it proved.
> The action and subsequent results of the deportations are obviously
> very complex, but it seems that it didn't really matter who they
> were, what they were or where they lived. They all had to go. Most
> of the camps in Siberia had long been established anyway and the
> majority of their earlier 'guests' had perished, so the
> accommodation was ready and waiting. The war simply gave them the
> excuse to carry out the plan.
> A means to an end.
> Too simplistic?
> Ken Fedzin
> Dewsbury, England.