Mirosław Ilnicki

* 1931

  • "There were still eight German families in Huta--those farmers who lived here--and there were four of them in Wizany. As I told you, people were prejudiced against the German culture, against its remains, against architecture, against everything. And, against those people, too. Even though they were living people, that they should be treated like humans, there was such prejudice against them. Germans were treated badly by many people. There were people who treated them decently, almost like equals. There were such people. But, there were also those who treated Germans very badly with a great deal of hostility. So, the Germans had to leave this place--it was no other way. It was impossible for them to stay here any longer. They were simply in danger. They left in 1946. They all left this place in 1946, and their places were taken by the Poles right away. There was even a case where a Pole threw a German out and seized everything, including pots cooking on the stove. He took it all and threw the German out. This case happened here next door. Everyone has one’s own conscience, and everyone is absolved by one’s conscience after some time. But, there were still Germans, and some were kind; there were decent Germans. There was a German living some way from here; he was a veterinary surgeon. A rich farmer--he was very rich. He had all the implements, machines. At that time, he had a large milking parlour in the barn. The milk went through glass pipes up to the container under the ceiling. You could never see such a thing. There are no such things even today; there are already other devices, but there were not many such tie-stall milking cowsheds. That German had one. He was an old guy, seventy years something. His wife was kind of older. He had a son and a daughter who lived with him. I do not know how old that son could have been. Anyway, he was about forty and his daughter was more or less the same age. Why they were with him, I do not know. But, that farmer who came there to his place was treating him very inhumanly. He was getting up in the morning--white gloves, a whip in his hand--and distributed jobs to them, what they were to do. Everyone got one for a start. He would come back home and go to bed, because he often hit the bottle--maybe he drank--and the Germans had to work. Living at his own place, he was humiliated to such an extent. It is so sad."

  • "Soon after the War, the first priest who came here was the priest from Drohobycz. They were Capuchins--a monk priest, a Capuchin. He had to take care of--let me count--two churches in Krzyż, Drawiny, Przeborowo, Brzegi, Lubcz Mały, Huta Szklana, Kuźnica, Żelichowo and Dębogóra--ten Churches. Once in a month, he was in each branch church, but normal masses were said at the parish church in Krzyż. It was like that for about a year. There were no means of transport, so people appointed themselves on their own. I went by horse, bringing the priest from Lubcz or Brzegi to Huta and took him to Kuźnica from here, and somebody else took him there, and then he was taken from the last church to Krzyż. When he left in the morning, often at ten, he came back at six or eight. He had such a tour; he worked very hard, but nevertheless he worked, and the first signs already showed. Later on, as time went on, other priests came, Capuchin monks. They remained here until 1963, but there were more and more of them, and there was normal work carried out in the field by the Capuchin priests. Even though the mass was said in Huta Szklana only once a month--but it was always said once a month, and it was sure that the mass would be said in Huta Szklana--only later on, masses were said more often. New priests were coming, new faithful were coming, too. "

  • "Soon after we arrived, there was such a response: a central order issued saying, that 'all the people build their capital'. Since there were not enough materials, in Gorzów there was an enterprise for clearing of rubble, because, initially, in the early months, Krzyż belonged to Gorzów in administrative terms. There was an order saying that all the people build their capital, so Krzyż, the municipal board was obliged to pull the rubble, the bricks down, clean them and put them together into piles, and the local council was obliged to carry those bricks to the station, to wagons. All the rubble was taken away, all the bricks were taken away from Krzyż to Warsaw. Krzyż remained on the rubble, empty, without a penny. The law was like that at that time, the obligations. That tribute was imposed already from the first days of the rule, because there was so much rubble, so many bricks in Krzyż from those houses, you could hardly say whether these were tall or small houses, because there was rubble, we did not know what rubble, but there was enough material to build new houses from."

  • "In 1949, soon after the measurements, there were recruitments to the Kolkhoz. In late autumn in 1949, a Kolkhoz was established here in Huta Szklana, and they were insistently urging to join the Kolkhoz. If you did not want to go to the Kolkhoz, they took away all the large horse-drawn machines--engines, ploughs, harrows, grain thresher. They took everything away, and formed district machine centres, and you had to pay for those machines when you borrowed them for farming. Later in 1954, they gave these machines back, but they were worn out at that time and were not fit for use. If you did not want to go to the Kolkhoz, you would not get a single machine from the Kolkhoz, and you would not have anything to farm the land with. There was also political persecution. Apart from the fact that there was no admission to any school for the children who were not in the Kolkhoz, there was also persecution in the form of different interrogations, prosecutor’s or military ones. People were leaving those interrogations in different health condition: sometimes crippled in physical terms in addition to moral and psychological harassment. There were restrictions on buying at the shop: if you were not at the Kolkhoz, there were restrictions on buying shoes or clothes. It was impossible. In 1951, the telegraph network was extended to the village. The radio and power pack were standing at the Kolkhoz accountant’s, and there were loudspeakers in the village. There had to be a loudspeaker in every home; every single farmer had to have a loudspeaker, especially those who were not in the Kolkhoz. They had to have loudspeakers at home and listen to all the announcements that were made; everything had to be heard out, so that you could know at the meeting, when you came, what was discussed. And, there was at least one propaganda meeting every week agitating for joining the Kolkhoz. At such a meeting the speaker asked how it was, what was said. If you did not know, you were unofficially summoned for an interrogation at the police station, to the prosecutor’s office."

  • "After the War, teachers came here. I remember, they came here to Huta Szklana, to Kuźnica and to Żelichowo, teachers from the Belarusian-Lithuanian Borderlands. They were very good teachers, you need to tell the truth, but they brought only those booklets with them. No notebooks, none at all. And, the knowledge they could convey verbally. There was nothing to write on, because it was glass wrapping paper and ink made from copy pencil was too thin. There were pens… Can you imagine a pen writing after several repairs? You had to take this ordinary pen, bend it, fix it to be able to write with it, because a bit was enough to make a stain around. And, the glass wrapping paper has this characteristic that if some ink drops on it at one spot the root hairs go like a starfish. This is how the first months after the War looked like. There was no map, no textbook, no notebook, nothing at all. There were German things, yes, that is true, but there were no clean notebooks, no textbooks, not even German ones. I do not know why. Were they destroyed by the Russki or what? There was nothing post-German, not a thing; even though there was a school, there was nothing German in that school."

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    Huta Szklana koło Krzyża , 18.05.2007

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There was a case where a Pole threw a German out and seized everything including the pots cooking on the stove

Ilnicki Mirosław
Ilnicki Mirosław
photo: Archiv - Pamět národa

Mirosław Ilnicki was born in the village of Komorniki (Lvov voivodship, Turka county) on the 15th of June 1931. His parents had their own farm, and his father was a worker for voluntary causes and founder of a farmers’ association. Before the outbreak of World War II, Mirosław completed the first form of a Polish primary school. In June of 1944, his family farm was burned by the Ukrainians. His family then had to move to the town where relatives on his father’s side lived. Soon, however, the extended family was deported by the Germans to a labour camp in Hungary. In May 1945, Mirosław Ilnicki went together with his family to the “Regained Territories” as part of the repatriation program. They settled on a farm in Huta Szklana near Krzyż. Mirosław Ilnicki went to primary school for a year, and then he gave up learning and worked on his parents’ farm, where he eventually started to farm on his own. He did eventually acquire primary education at an evening school and completed extramural secondary agricultural education. Mirosław Ilnicki lives in Huta Szklana.