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Oral history interview with Konrad Bogacki

Oral History | Accession Number: 1995.A.1285.36 | RG Number: RG-50.149.0036

Konrad Bogacki, born July 28, 1908 near Poznan, Poland, describes his family and educational background; civilian life during World War I; the death of his father during WWI; attending the cadet school, Rawicz, beginning in 1924; his reasons for joining the army; the class background of the pupils; his training and the disciplining; his course at officer school in Warsaw, Poland; being in the 14th Infantry Division; the importance of horses in the Polish Army and the use of foreign equipment; the arrival of Polish signals equipment; the system of conscription and the foreign officers in Polish Army; seeing that war with Germany was inevitable; his attitude towards the Nazi regime; the attitude of officers towards the possibility of an alliance with Russia; the French and British response after the German invasion of Poland; his memories of the German invasion and preparing for it in August 1939; the encirclement of Infantry Division 14 at Lublin, Poland; evading capture; his opinion of the German Army; the condition of Warsaw and it's population in October 1939; German activities in Poland; deciding to remain in Poland and search for resistance groups; organizing signals equipment; his attempts to forge a radio link with the Polish Consulate in Budapest, Hungary in March 1940; security precautions when sending radio messages; other radio links; establishing contact with London in September 1940; his reaction to the fall of France in 1940; German surveillance of Polish men of military age; overcoming technical problems of reception and transmission; the reaction of the Polish underground to the German invasion of Russia in 1941; security measures within his resistance unit and the size of the unit up to 1943; transferring signals between different parts of Poland via London; being aware of the existence of the Warsaw Ghetto; evading capture at a German checkpoint; his first arrest and release in October 1943; his second arrest December 8, 1943; his feelings of relief after being captured; being interrogated by the Gestapo; his lucky escape from execution; being sent to Gross-Rosen concentration camp in April 1944; working for electronic section in camp; the treatment of inmates by the camp staff; conditions in camp; the execution of inmates who tried to escape; the evacuation of the camp in February 1945; the train journey and the conditions on board; the psychological effects of life in concentration camps; working with a mining unit at Hersbruck and repairing railway tracks through Nuremberg, Germany; marching to Dachau concentration camp and the execution of inmates there; being liberated by Americans; the comparison between Dachau and Gross-Rosen; the treatment of Poles by French authorities; more details on being with the Polish resistance from 1940 to 1943, including the use of hand and bicycle generators, securing equipment from a Warsaw electrical factory, the near discovery of radio equipment by Germans, the difficulties for resistance workers dropped by the RAF, forging a radio link with Russia circa 1942, and providing assistance to the People's Party; and the German policy towards Polish elite.

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.
Konrad Bogacki
interview:  1985 May 02
5 sound cassettes (90 min.).
Record last modified: 2023-06-02 07:45:39
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