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Gatooma

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  • Halina Szulakowska
    Hiya! I recently got into conversation with my mother and uncle about their one year stint in the Polish camp of Gatooma (now called Kadoma, Latitude 18° 20
    Message 1 of 3 , May 2, 2003
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      Hiya!
       
      I recently got into conversation with my mother and uncle about their one year stint in the Polish camp of Gatooma (now called Kadoma, Latitude 18° 20' S, Longitude 29° 57' E, Zimbabwe). My mother even drew a plan of the camp from memory. It seems that they arrived there sometime in 1947, after a long stay at Marandellas. I know the place was originally built as a POW camp for Italian soldiers, but does anyone know when the first Polish refugees starting arriving? Or even when the last refugees left?
       
      My mother's family must have left in about March of 1948, because they were taken to Durban, and then boarded the R.M.M.V. Carnarvon Castle (Union-Castle Line) that brought the family to Southampton on 3rd May 1948 (which is a little coincidental with our group having mentioned the Konstytucja 3-go maja). WOW! I hadn't thought about it before... tomorrow... my mother will have been living in the UK for 55 years!
       
      My sister said to me recently that it's about time we had a book on 'Polacy w Afryce'. We've had the series on Iran, and the recent publication on 'Polacy w Indiach' (which is a very good read) and so one on Africa should be due... or is there one and I don't know about it?
       
      Any info/help would be muchly appreciated! Thanks.
       
      Best wishes,
       
      Halina :o)
       
      P.S. Any chance that someone out there may even have a photograph of the camp?
       
       
    • Helena Danielczuk
      Hear hear Yes I think as many different experiences as is humanly possible should be discussed publicised etc etc. My mother in law maiden name Sterna were in
      Message 2 of 3 , May 2, 2003
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        Hear hear Yes I think as many different experiences as is humanly possible
        should be discussed publicised etc etc. My mother in law maiden name Sterna
        were in Koyo and she has some wonderful , sad , uplifting memories we
        should make them available to the world to show the extent of the strenghth
        of human spirit in all its manifestations.



        Bye 4 now Hela.





        >From: "Halina Szulakowska" <halina_szulakowska@...>
        >Reply-To: Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com
        >To: <Kresy-Siberia@yahoogroups.com>
        >Subject: [Kresy-Siberia] Gatooma
        >Date: Fri, 2 May 2003 08:56:29 +0100
        >
        >Hiya!
        >
        >I recently got into conversation with my mother and uncle about their one
        >year stint in the Polish camp of Gatooma (now called Kadoma, Latitude 18�
        >20' S, Longitude 29� 57' E, Zimbabwe). My mother even drew a plan of the
        >camp from memory. It seems that they arrived there sometime in 1947, after
        >a long stay at Marandellas. I know the place was originally built as a POW
        >camp for Italian soldiers, but does anyone know when the first Polish
        >refugees starting arriving? Or even when the last refugees left?
        >
        >My mother's family must have left in about March of 1948, because they were
        >taken to Durban, and then boarded the R.M.M.V. Carnarvon Castle
        >(Union-Castle Line) that brought the family to Southampton on 3rd May 1948
        >(which is a little coincidental with our group having mentioned the
        >Konstytucja 3-go maja). WOW! I hadn't thought about it before...
        >tomorrow... my mother will have been living in the UK for 55 years!
        >
        >My sister said to me recently that it's about time we had a book on 'Polacy
        >w Afryce'. We've had the series on Iran, and the recent publication on
        >'Polacy w Indiach' (which is a very good read) and so one on Africa should
        >be due... or is there one and I don't know about it?
        >
        >Any info/help would be muchly appreciated! Thanks.
        >
        >Best wishes,
        >
        >Halina :o)
        >
        >P.S. Any chance that someone out there may even have a photograph of the
        >camp?
        >


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      • Stefan Wisniowski
        Helena This may be of interest. The following info is in the Langfitt website at http://www.immi.gov.au/research/publications/langfitt/langfitt26.htm :
        Message 3 of 3 , May 4, 2003
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          Helena
          This may be of interest. The following info is in the Langfitt website at
          http://www.immi.gov.au/research/publications/langfitt/langfitt26.htm :

          "Krystyna Jarzebowska and her sister Halina Juszczyk arrived in Africa in
          February 1943 and spent seven years there. During this period they moved
          four times.... In January 1947, as many of the African settlements were
          being liquidated, Halina, Krystyna and their mother were moved to Gatooma
          Camp in Southern Rhodesia, where they joined Poles from many of the other
          Rhodesian camps. Their schooling continued for another year until the
          schools had to close as teachers and pupils left for England and other
          destinations. Once again, a commission from communist Poland arrived to
          'encourage' them to return to Poland, which most refused. Branded as
          traitors and stripped of their Polish citizenship, these 'remnants' were
          moved to Tengeru early in 1948."

          And at
          http://www.immi.gov.au/research/publications/langfitt/pdf/appen2&3.pdf :

          "Gatooma had been used as a camp for Italian prisoners of war during the
          war and was only used briefly as a holding camp for Poles as UNRRA and the
          IRO tried to encourage them to return to Poland."

          Stefan Wisniowski

          > From: "Helena Danielczuk" <helena52@...>
          >
          > I recently got into conversation with my mother and uncle about their one
          > year stint in the Polish camp of Gatooma (now called Kadoma, Latitude 18°
          > 20' S, Longitude 29° 57' E, Zimbabwe). My mother even drew a plan of the
          > camp from memory. It seems that they arrived there sometime in 1947, after
          > a long stay at Marandellas. I know the place was originally built as a POW
          > camp for Italian soldiers, but does anyone know when the first Polish
          > refugees starting arriving? Or even when the last refugees left?
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