When one’s grandmother writes about a horrific experience that lasted 16 years, 20 years after it happened, all from memory with no notes, one has to wonder if there are errors. I am totally confident that Babusia wrote honestly and without exaggeration, but have no proof of how accurate it is – until today. A very helpful guy, a member of the Kresy-Siberia Discussion Group found a testimony in the Hoover Archives describing the same deportation journey from Rawa Ruska.
Teresa Underka wrote, “On the night of the 12 to the 13th of April the NKVD came with guns. The family packed and were taken to the station. They were put on wagons. Everyone thought it was going to be the end of them. It was dark, airless and tight; so tight that it was impossible to move. They sat locked up at the station all day. The train left in the evening and got to Lwow the next morning. Here they were told to transfer to other wagons. There were 82 people in the wagon. It took 2 weeks to get to Alga in Aktyubinsk Oblast.”
Urszula Muskus wrote, “It was 10 past midnight … it was 13 Apr 1940 … packed by 4am … lorry to the station …wagon doors slammed shut … 50 in wagon … set off after nightfall … arrived outside Lwow 11am next day … moved to larger wagon on wide tracks … 85 crammed into the wagon … 13 days after we had set out our train arrived at Alga.”
Office file of the Social Welfare Department, 1941-1944, Polish Embassy in USSR http://szukajwarchiwach.pl/800/35/0/-/49/skan/full/NBdRDC_P2IViPcGcxc0xrg This document is hand written in Polish.