Zofia Dąbrowska was taken with her mother and brother Tadeusz on February 10, 1940 from Chrask in Wolyn to poselok Wietrowal to Arkhangelsk Oblast. A few months later Zofia’s older brother – Antoni joined them.
After the Sikorski-Mayski agreement was signed, the brothers got in Anders’ Army, and Zosia with her mother through the Middle East and Africa returned to Poland. The wooden mushroom is the only souvenir taken from home, which survived deportation.
“I still have the prewar mushroom used to mend stockings. Such wooden mushrooms – inside there were needles – a stocking was pulled to mend. They gave it to me for playing (…). When we were getting out of the ship they took everything from us – documents, luggage – only that mushroom to mend stockings. It was the only toy, I always had by my side and I did not give to the luggage. The mushroom travelled twenty two hundreds kilometers with me and returned to Poland.”
(from Zofia Sądel nee Dąbrowska’s memoirs)