August "Exhibit of the Month" - Muzeum Pamięci Sybiru

8 August 2023

August “Exhibit of the Month”

The August “Exhibit of the Month” can already be seen in the Sybir Memorial Museum.

Skip to content

In the Sybir Memorial Museum, you can see more mementos shown as part of the “Exhibit of the Month” series. Presented items belonged to Adolf Saraniecki — a prosecutor and MP in interwar Poland, deported with his family to the USSR in 1940. Two years later, when the opportunity to leave the Soviet Union arose, Adolf Saraniecki consciously decided to stay in the “inhuman land”. He wanted to help those, who did not make it or could not join Anders’ Army. This choice cost him his life. He was sent to other labor camps, and in 1944 he died in one of them due to pellagra, caused by malnutrition.

Among the guests, who visited the Sybir Memorial Museum during the presentation of the exhibits was the granddaughter of Adolf Saraniecki, Anna Parmhagen, who came to Białystok with her family from Sweden. The presentation of the results of the efforts of the employees of the Collections Department of the Sybir Memorial Museum was a touching moment. They managed to develop a photograph of Adolf Saraniecki from a very indistinct glass negative, most likely the last photograph of him before his death.

Mrs. Anna donated the first mementos to our collections already in 2018, 3 years before the opening of the Museum. As she recalled: — The second visit took place in 2022, then I brought mementos of my mother and people she had contact with. Maybe today I’ll start with such a story: I was 4 or 5 years old, there was a chest in Cracow, my aunt opens this chest and says — Ania, look what’s in there. I saw a huge envelope hidden under a layer of materials, which contained everything that I later donated to the Sybir Memorial Museum. I remember that during the years when I was a child, I had this impression that for my family it was some sort of sanctity. The ceremony of opening this chest and taking out all these letters, drawings, photos, it was a very special moment.

Family stories reached Mrs. Anna for many years through the good offices of her grandmother, mother and aunt.

— In 1940, my grandfather, who knew that he might be arrested, prepared himself. When they came for him, he managed to escape. He hid for three days. At that time, the Soviets set a trap in our house and were waiting for my grandfather to arrest him. Finally, my family was transported to the ramp and awaited deportation. Grandpa found out about it and decided to go with them. Grandma was terrified when she saw him in the door of the carriage. However, my grandfather said that he would not leave his family and went with them to Siberia — said Anna Parmhagen.

Mementos of the Saraniecki family can be seen until the end of August in the Sybir Memorial Museum at Węglowa 1 in Białystok.

Shop Visit our shop and check out the Sybir Memorial Museum's latest publications Enter the shop