Welcome Frania, it is great to see yet another Aussie in the group. I know
what it is like to be on the internet after midnight!
If you visit http://www.AForgottenOdyssey.com
you will find lots of
interesting information and links.
Thanks for your background information. There may be a couple of
inconsistencies in the details, though, and you might want to check them
First, Stalin was not yet in control in Wolyn, a Polish province, in 1936.
The USSR occupied Wolyn and all of eastern Poland on 17 September 1939. Is
it possible that the deportation was after 1939? Otherwise, I understand
that there were deportations of Poles from eastern Ukraine in the 1930s. A
confirmed geographical location for "Orlince Antoniny" might clear this up.
Second, the general whose army ended up fighting the Germans at Monte Casino
in Italy was Wladyslaw ANDERS. Anders Army was formed in late 1941 by
Polish citizens deported to the USSR (both POWs and civilians) who were
released from bondage under an "Amnesty" agreed when Germany attacked its
Soviet allies. This army was under the command of the Polish Government in
Exile in London, and was evacuated to Iran in 1942 to be reformed as the
Polish 2nd Corpus under the British 8th Army (the Polish 1st Corpus was
formed earlier in England from the Polish armies reformed in France in 1939
and evacuated from there when France fell to Hitler).
Those amnestied Polish citizens in the USSR who did not make it to Anders
Army were later signed up for a Polish Division (called the "Kosciuszko
Division") under General BERLING under the command of the Soviet Red Army.
It fought the Germans on the eastern front, ie. in Russia and then through
Poland to Germany.
A possible chain of events may therefore have been that your father was
deported to Kazakhstan (possibly in June 1940), and after the amnesty ended
up in the Kosciuszko Division, from which he was taken as prisoner in battle
with the Germans in the USSR. It would be possible to check military
records (certainly in England for Anders Army and likely in Warsaw for the
"Berling" Kosciuszko Division).
By the way, you may be interested in the story of a Polish veteran Karol
Wierzbicki (perhaps a cousin?) from eastern Poland, at
m (written in Polish, though).
> From: "Fran Biber" <biber@...>
> Date: Mon, 31 Dec 2001 01:23:29 +1100
> To: "Stefan Wisniowski" <swisniowski@...>
> Subject: Re: biber50au <biber@...> wants to join Kresy-Siberia
> Dear Stefan,
> My name is Frania Biber (Wierzbicki) and I live near Warrnambool on south
> west coast in Victoria. My parents arrived in Australia in Dec 1950 from
> Germany after the war and I was born here.
> My father Franciszek and his family were deported by Stalin in 1936 to
> Jettaj near Karaganda in Kazachstan from Orlince Antoniny in Wolyn. I have
> remembered and had jotted down some snippets of information he told us over
> 30 years ago. I have so many questions now I wish I could ask him but it is
> too late! He joined the second polish army formed by General Berling? which
> ended up fighting at Monte Cassino. However, my father was captured by the
> Germans in a battle whilst still in USSR and transported to Germany as a
> prisoner of war. His two brothers were also injured/captured but ended up
> back in Kazachstan where they had wives and children.
> As a teenager in Australia, I had never heard of these places/events and now
> am trying to put the bits together. I think I got to Kresy-Siberia from
> Poland GenWeb by following links. I actually started with an old email from
> a mailing group-I thought I would clean up my Inbox and it is now four hours
> Hope this is enough information that will qualify me to join your group.