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Re: [Kresy-Siberia] Re: welcome Marek Wolski

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  • LAURA WOLSKI
    Czesc Mark!!!! Good to hear from you. I apologise for not getting in touch sooner. I recently flew back home to the UK for my uncle s funeral in London. (I m
    Message 1 of 7 , Apr 2 6:43 PM
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      Czesc Mark!!!!
       
      Good to hear from you. I apologise for not getting in touch sooner. I recently flew back home to the UK for my uncle's funeral in London. (I'm living in Jackson, Michigan now) Although it was a sad occassion it was also great to see family & friends too. With my uncle's death it underlines yet again the fact that those who lived through and survived the War are now getting far and few. Time does not stand still, but we lose every day more of the survivors from what I call the 'Polish Holocaust'
       
      My mother and her family (parents and 4 sisters) were from Kamionka Strumilowa, near Lwow and were deported to Siberia. They got out but grandad died in Uzbekistan. They then went through Teheran, Karachi, across to Mombassa and to Masindi & Koja, Uganda. Finally to the UK. My mother passed away a few years ago and that made me realise the importance of documenting this whole incredible episode in history. I worked for a multimedia company, Goodman Multimedia in the UK. We did documentaries as well as paper articles, books etc.
       
      After I moved to Michigan I was amazed that, despite a huge Polish population, very few Polish Americans "know" the truth of what happened. So I resolved to put this right. I've read books written by survivors and found it difficult to gain an overview of the forces surrounding these momentous events, why they happened, and mostly important, why no one knows of the 2 million who were deported at war beginning - plus a further 2.5 million at war end up till 1953. That makes 4.5 million! This fact puts the Polish holocaust on par with the Jewish one - but few know about it.
       
      Rather than write a book on the subject I'm putting together a multimedia "show" using latest technologies which lead the viewer through these events via a very visual presentation. Having worked in the field of multimedia, it is a fact that the attention span of readers and viewers alike is getting shorter in this day and age! Therefore to attract the attention of the general public, particularly young people, I have taken my desired path. My first showing is in Jackson, Michigan on May 10th together Klaus Hergst who has written a wonderful book about the experiences of a boy who survived Siberia and arrived in the USA via Santa Rosa, entitled "Exiled to Siberia"
       
      So that is my background. IN THE MEANTIME......
       
      I do appreciate your offer of help and will be in touch with a number of questions surrounding the Santa Rosa refugees and orphans.
       
      Bset regards,
       
      Mark (Marek) Wolski 
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: markkus1964
      Sent: Wednesday, February 05, 2003 10:52 AM
      To: Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [Kresy-Siberia] Re: welcome Marek Wolski
       
      Hi Marek,

      My mother and her family were in the movement from Kresy to Santa
      Rosa. I have the camps names that were part of the journey as her
      brother eventually died at Monte Casino, and we have all his mail
      that he sent to the family along their journey.  My mother and her
      sister are the last survivors of their family(Hanowski) One sister
      died in Siberia, one brother at Monte Casino. My grandfather,
      grandmother and 4th aunt died here in Toronto Canada. I sent my
      mother a few years ago to Chicago, to meet up with some survivors
      of "Colonia Santa Rosa". I could share many stories, names and
      photos with the group.

      I'm looking forward to many more writings and I excited about your
      project at hand.  Good luck, and if I can help in any way, let me
      know.

      All the best!
      Mark Kusiewicz


      --- In Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com, Paul Havers <haverp@c...>
      wrote:
      > Hi Marek
      >
      > is your father's name Zygmunt by any chance
      >
      > Paul
      >
      > At 22:40 01/26/2003 -0500, you wrote:
      > >Hi Marek!
      > >  Welcome to the Group. Do you know where your Mother was in
      Tehran-
      > >which camp? I went through Tehran too Camp # 2.
      > >Greetings
      > >Romuald
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > >----- Original Message -----
      > >From: Stefan Wisniowski <swisniowski@p...>
      > >Date: Sunday, January 26, 2003 10:14 am
      > >Subject: [Kresy-Siberia] welcome Marek Wolski
      > >
      > > > Please welcome Marek Wolski to the group, recently transplanted
      > > > from Britain
      > > > to Michigan!
      > > >
      > > > Marek we look forward to your multimedia contribution to the
      cause
      > > > (I have
      > > > reproduced your guestbook entry on the Miedzynami website as a
      fuller
      > > > introduction to your background for the group).
      > > >
      > > > Stefan Wisniowski
      > > >
      > > > ----------
      > > > Czesc Stefan!!!
      > > >
      > > > It was good to hear from you. I agree it probably is time I
      joined the
      > > > Kresy-Siberia Group. My mother and her family were deported
      from
      > > > E.Polandand survived Siberia, exiting through Teheran and on to
      > > > Masindi, Uganda
      > > > before arriving in England. I recently emigrated from the UK to
      > > > the USA and
      > > > am horrified just how little the Poles here in Michigan, USA
      know
      > > > about the
      > > > facts of what happened. As a journalist with multimedia
      experience
      > > > I am
      > > > researching and putting together a mulitimedia presentation
      > > > regarding the
      > > > deportations. I'm flying to England tomorrow for a week and do
      not
      > > > have much
      > > > time at present -but when I get back I will contact you again
      with
      > > > moredetail.
      > > >
      > > > Boze zdrowie.
      > > >
      > > > Marek Wolski
      > > > MLWOL@m...
      > > >
      > > > > Dear sirs, May I congratulate you on your excellent web
      site. It
      > > > is extremely
      > > > > informative and well presented offering a clear history of
      the
      > > > deportation of
      > > > > Poles to the Soviet Union during World War II. It is a
      holocaust
      > > > which is
      > > > > truly forgotten and needs to be told. To this end I have been
      > > > researching and
      > > > > documenting the entire tragedy - from Soviet invasion
      through to
      > > > exodus and
      > > > > dispersal around the globe. My mother and her family suffered
      > > > unimaginable> horrors themselves before ending up in England.
      > > > >
      > > > > I am a British born journalist and have recently moved to the
      > > > USA and am
      > > > > amazed that no one - even Americans of Polish descent know
      the
      > > > story of what
      > > > > happened, here in Michigan. It may be that the majority of
      > > > exodus civilian
      > > > > Poles and Anders army ended up and remained in the UK after
      the
      > > > War. I lived
      > > > > in such a community who regarded themselves, not as
      immigrants,
      > > > but as
      > > > > betrayed peoples who had no free country to return to. I have
      > > > therefore> resolved to develop this story into a multimedia
      > > > presentation and have been
      > > > > working on it for some months now. Some of the data has been
      > > > relatively easy
      > > > > to find, others less so.
      > > >
      > > > > I have also followed the trail of those leaving Persia to
      India,
      > > > Africa, New
      > > > > Zealand, Palestine etc. Again, it seems many of those
      countries were
      > > > > accomodating and sympathetic to the plight of the refugees.
      With
      > > > one noticable
      > > > > exception!!! - The USA. According to your website: about 1500
      > > > arrived in two
      > > > > journeys aboard the USS Hermitage from Iran to San Pedro
      naval
      > > > dock near Los
      > > > > Angeles June & Sept 1943 respectively. They were split and
      > > > detained (women &
      > > > > children including about 600 orphans at Griffith Park
      Detention
      > > > Centre) and
      > > > > men (Tuna Canyon). These places were used as prisoner of war
      and
      > > > detention> camps for Japanese. When the local Polish population
      > > > found out they rallied to
      > > > > citizens of an ally country, who had survived the horrors of
      Soviet
      > > > > concentration camps, and who were to find themselves in POW
      > > > camps in detention
      > > > > and not treated as refugees. The Polish priest from LA,
      Father
      > > > Waclaw> Zajaczkowski, even recruited families willing to take
      in a
      > > > hundred orphans.
      > > > > But that was not in the US Governments plans, and a few days
      > > > later all of the
      > > > > refugees were deported to Mexico - to Colonia Santa Rosa.
      The Polish
      > > > > government in exile in London arranged funding to finance a
      > > > refugee camp
      > > > > there. I have tried to find photos of these camps and any
      more
      > > > information.> Indeed, I have had one reply to my investigations
      > > > from Tom Breckner of Los
      > > > > Angeles City government which oversees parks & historical
      sites
      > > > in the city,
      > > > > as follows : "Thank you for your interest in Griffith Park
      > > > history and the
      > > > > involvement of the Federal government in the Park during our
      > > > nation's recovery
      > > > > from the Great Depression with the Civilan Conservation Corps
      > > > and the Works
      > > > > Progress Administration projects, and during the Second World
      > > > War. The USC
      > > > > website you referenced in your email is misleading. We
      > > > repeatedly have made
      > > > > attempts to correct this information, but the best the
      manager
      > > > of this website
      > > > > could offer was a footnote correction. Unfortunately by not
      > > > correcting the
      > > > > body of the text, this erroneous history is continued. The
      > > > Griffith Park
      > > > > enclosure was never a Japanese Interment or Detention Camp
      nor
      > > > was it used as
      > > > > a transition center for the processing of Japanese-Americans
      > > > before being
      > > > > relocated to Internment Camps during the Second World War.
      The
      > > > camp in
      > > > > Griffith Park was constructed as a Civilian Conversation
      Corps
      > > > camp that had
      > > > > facilities large enough to house approximately 500-700
      corpsmen,
      > > > on a site
      > > > > that was once the Griffith Park Boys' Camp. The CCC was very
      > > > active throughout
      > > > > Griffith Park during the 1930s, and the federal government
      > > > continued use of
      > > > > this parkland for variety of uses from the 1930s until 1947,
      > > > under permit by
      > > > > the City of Los Angeles. During the 1940s, this site was
      used as
      > > > a Photo
      > > > > Experimentation Laboratory, a military film location, a
      Camoflague
      > > > > Experimental Laboratory and Yard, a Prisoner of War
      Enclosure,
      > > > and a Hydraulic
      > > > > Model Yard to studied the flow of the Los Angeles River Flood
      > > > Control Channel,
      > > > > to name some of the uses. The site was only used on isolated
      > > > instances as a
      > > > > Prisoner of War Enclosure, processing only six German, seven
      > > > Japanese, and two
      > > > > Italian prisoners of war, and because of its limited use, the
      > > > prisoner of war
      > > > > processing activity was ordered abandoned on July 24, 1943.
      > > > Regarding the June
      > > > > 25-27, 1943, detainment in Griffith Park of Polish refugees
      en
      > > > route to Leon,
      > > > > Quanajuato, Mexico, see National Archives reference
      numbers: --
      > > > RG85 Records
      > > > > of Naturization and Immigration 85 17W3-64-07-04 Box 2662 --
      RG
      > > > 389 Records of
      > > > > the Office of the Provost Marshal General, Entry 461- Box
      2480
      > > > B. Griffith
      > > > > Park, California. These records are a limited number of
      documents
      > > > > (correspondence and notes of telephone conversations)
      discussing the
      > > > > preparations and arrangements for the Immigration and
      > > > Naturization Service
      > > > > agency (a branch of the Justice Department) to use Army
      > > > facilities to house
      > > > > and feed approximately 708 Polish refugees for two days,
      before
      > > > continuing> their travels to Mexico. The camp in Griffith Park,
      > > > which had the bed capacity
      > > > > to house 700 people, was not being used at the time, and was
      > > > probably the most
      > > > > likely choice to accommodate this large a number of people
      > > > within Los Angeles
      > > > > for the least cost. The camps in Griffith Park and La Tuna
      > > > Canyon were also
      > > > > near Los Angeles Union Passenger Terminal and railroad
      > > > connection to El Paso,
      > > > > Texas, where transfers were made to Mexico. After a quick
      search
      > > > using the
      > > > > Internet search engine www.google.com, I was able to find
      > > > numerous sites
      > > > > regarding the histoic movements of Polish refugees to Mexico,
      > > > including> personal accounts, books and Masters Degree Thesis
      on
      > > > this topic. I believe
      > > > > these sites might be able to help you with additional
      > > > information for your
      > > > > research and may be able to provide referrals that could
      > > > possibly be able to
      > > > > help you with answering your questions. I wish you the very
      best
      > > > with your
      > > > > research." Mr.Breckner's response strongly implies that
      Griffith
      > > > Park was not
      > > > > used for internment. And here lies my dilemma - was it or
      was it
      > > > not? Were the
      > > > > Poles merely just passing through on the way to Mexico, or
      did
      > > > the Polish
      > > > > community in LA try to take in the orphans but were refused
      by
      > > > the US
      > > > > government? Are there any survivors or a Colonia Santa Rosa
      > > > association that I
      > > > > may contact?? My main question is - I am trying to find some
      > > > answers to the US
      > > > > government's policy behind this. Why the US failed to offer
      any
      > > > accomodation> to Polish refugees during the war, were the few
      who
      > > > did arrive on US soil
      > > > > treated as prisoners and not as refugee survivors from a
      largely
      > > > forgotten> holocaust. I have searched for information on both
      > > > Griffith Park and Tuna
      > > > > Canyon camps - but have drawn blanks. They are mentioned in -
      > > > > http://www.usc.edu/is which state
      > > > > that recent release of records at the National Archives and
      > > > Records Center in
      > > > > Laguna Niguel may reveal more facts on this issue, but I
      cannot
      > > > home in on
      > > > > where I may find this Records Center. I do apologise for
      asking
      > > > so many
      > > > > questions but am unfortunately drawing quite a blank
      regarding
      > > > the role of the
      > > > > US in this matter and what happened - and why. I would be
      very
      > > > grateful for
      > > > > any help or archives your organization may hold regarding
      > > > Griffith Park and
      > > > > other places that the Polish refugees were kept
      or "interred" in
      > > > - or to point
      > > > > me in the right direction for any further information or
      > > > archives. Thank you
      > > > > for your precious time in reading this email. Czesc i Chwala!
      > > > Pozdrowienia> Swiateczne i Nowo Roczne - daj Bozia zdrowie i
      > > > pomyslnosc, dla was wszystkich
      > > > > Szczesc Boze. MAREK WOLSKI
      > > > > Marek Wolski <mlwol@m...>
      > > > > Jackson, USA - Thursday, January 09, 2003 at 00:06:48 (EST)
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > >
      > >
      >
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