Museum collections extend thanks to another donation

Memorabilia related to Second Lieutenant Jerzy Krünes, an officer in the 144th Infantry Regiment and a prisoner of oflags at Arnswalde, Dössel and other camps, were donated to the Museum by Andrzej Mania on 11 August. The Second Lieutenant was the donor's uncle, so these objects have sentimental value to the family.

The donated artefacts include: photographs of Jerzy Krünes taken during his schooling and military service, one of which shows him in the historical uniform of the Army of Congress Poland; a group photograph of prisoners-of-war from Oflag XI A Osterode dated 1940; copies of prisoner-of-war letter sheets sent to his family; and an identity card of Jerzy Krünes as a student of the Faculty of Law at Jan Kazimierz University in Lviv.

This is a precious gift, but these objects alone would be mute without an accompanying story. Andrzej Mania and his family had already been doing their own research into reconstructing their uncle's fate for some time. Even then, Mania was already considering a potential donation. Unfortunately, we now know with absolute certainty that Second Lieutenant Jerzy Krünes (POW No.: 1164), died a tragic death as the result of a crime committed against the Polish prisoners-of-war who participated in a group escape from Oflag VI B Dössel. This presumably happened at Buchenwald concentration camp, where the first captured escapees were transported. The family gained knowledge of this only after the end of the war, thanks to a personal account given in the 1950s by a fellow captive from Dössel – Second Lieutenant Władysław Tychanowicz.

Thank you very much for your gift!

Photo by E. Góra/CMJW.


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