The hard way of my family in January 1945.
The Blunks, a poor family with many children, lived in Danzig, a free city-state surrounded by Polish territory. On August 31st, 1939, behind their house, they experienced the beginning of the Second World War. The oldest son Paul, eager to escape his alcoholic, brutal father, voluntarily joined the Danzig National Guard. After Poland was occupied by Germany, the father was granted his own estate in Poland. Until the war’s end, the family lived first “in Paradise”; then began the terrible deportation and murder of the former Polish landowners as well as the Polish “intelligentsia”. In 1945, the family had to leave their farm in Adamowo. They tried to flee in January 1945 with nine children and two horse-drawn carts from Poland to the West. Hedwig describes her experiences during those times, as told to her daughter.In 2014 Marion traveled to Poland searching the places of her ancestors. My book is available by Amazon and Google-Play: Ebook: 5.90 €, Printbook 9,90 €
My Uncle Paul Plunk, born 1920 in Praust near Gdansk, SS-Totenkopf Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler
Rezensions: A very good insight into the Author's family's journey and lifestyle with many family photo's into their everyday life during War World II. I couldn't put it down.
It was easy reading in the German language, but the content was not. It is about the experiences of a German family during WWII while living in West Prussia and eventually leaving from there. It reveals their own personal struggles and describes the oppression they saw against all Polish people. It is a glimpse of that time in History thru the eyes of a young German girl.
Not much is written by “ethnic” Germans given polish land in WW2. I wish more people were as honest as this woman is sharing their experiences of wartime Poland and Germany.Thank you so much for sharing your family history. Your mother was a brave and honest Woman.
Some people in our polish museum have already read your book and they said that you truly described those days that were disgrace for all mankind and civilization. Thank you Dear Madam that you decided to write truly about tragic episodes of your family and especially Polish people during World War II. Thanking you once more for telling the truth we will recommend your book to another people because it is worth of it. We wish you good health and all the best!
My mother 1941 in Wildno in Poland visiting another German family.
My father as a soldier in Jugoslavia, April 1941.
To the admonishing memory of the external command Wedel of
the Nazi concentration camp Neuengamme Sep. through Nov. 1944.
List of deaths of the Wedel branch of the Neuengamme
concentration camp 1944/1945.
During the Second World War, Kronskamp and today's Coringstraßea
It was bounded to the north by the Rissener Straße, to the
south a camp for forced laborers followed.
An outpost of the POW camp served as the external command of the Nazi
concentration camp Neuengamme.
The Wedel concentration camp was in existence between
September and November 1944, and two inmate dolls were used one after the
1) 500 Jewish women from Czechoslovakia and Hungary
2) 500 men mainly from Holland, Poland and the Soviet Union
Under difficult conditions, the inmates carry out clearing
and shearing work. From this time 29 deaths are named,
others cannot be excluded.
This memorial stands at the former boundary of the external
command, a grave and memorial for the concentration camp victims is located in
the Wedel cemetery on the Egenbüttelweg.
Wedel, Holstein, November 1986
Remains of the shooting ranges on the shores of the lake in Norderstedt city park are reminiscent of a dark chapter in German history. From 1936 to 1945 they were part of a training ground for the SS soldiers of the Heidberg barracks "Germania".
In Germany, many cities have street names from the home areas of the Germans, who were expelled from the East from 1944 to 1948.
Here are some examples:
Breslauer Straße (Wroclaw Street), Danziger Straße (Gdansk Street), Marienburger Street, Stettiner Staße (Szczecin Street) ... I found these road signs in northern Germany in the town of Pinneberg.
The displaced people from the "cold homeland" were often undesirable during this difficult economic time, told my mother, born in Gdansk in 1927. City officials went from apartment to apartment to see if there were any rooms available. It took years for the millions of refugees to be properly housed, mostly in newly built settlements on the outskirts of the city. "Don't play with the settlement children!" the locals told their children.
“February 1940: Hans had missed the blitzkrieg against Poland. He hoped to finally be drafted into the Wehrmacht so he would still have the opportunity to fight for his fatherland. He wanted to a be part of this war adventure.
Soon he was in the barracks and deployed to France.
When he and his company are transferred from peaceful France to Ukraine in 1941, his life as a soldier changes. His view of war began to shift in the East and had nothing to do with his previous ideas.”
Wilhelm hasn’t even had time to finish his training as a metalworker when he is conscripted into the Reich Labour Service and drafted into the Wehrmacht in April 1942. He and his comrades endure dull military service and tough drills. Yet it is not tank battles and military attacks that form the focus of this narrative, but the everyday life of a simple soldier and his relationship with the civilian population. In October 1944, Wilhelm’s troop is housed in private quarters near Rastenburg in East Prussia. In December 1944, Wilhelm and his comrades fight on the German-Luxembourg border in the Wehrmacht’s very last battle, in Echternach, against the Americans. My ebook is available:4.13 €, Print book 13.81 € and kindleunlimited 0 €.
Less discussion of East Prussia than I anticipated - but a very good story
Wilhelm on the way to Rastenburg
Wilhelm in Russia - military service
Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-H27992 / Sönnke, Hans / CC-BY-SA 3.
The Wilhelm-Gustloff was a passenger vessel belonging to the national socialist organization Kraft durch Freude (KdF = strength through Joy). It's sinking by a Russian submarine S-13 off the coast of Pomerania in the Baltic Sea on 30th January 1945 is perhaps the single greatest maritime disaster, with the loss of more than 9,000 lives. The National Socialist regime, in particular, Gauleiter Erich Koch, had rejected an early evacuation of East Prussia. After the breakthrough of the Red Army on the Eastern Front at the start of 1945 many residents of the province found themselves cut off. From the rest of the Reich. On 21st January 1945 Admiral Doenitz ordered operation Hannibal, in which wounded soldiers were to be transported west to German territory using all available ships. Meanwhile, the transport of civilians had been allowed, and 2.5 million people were able to escape across the Baltic Sea.The Wilhelm-Gustloff was also supposed to participate in the evacuation. On 30th January 1945, at around 1310 hours, it left Gotenhafen with an estimated 10,000 people on board. After the official count about another 2,500 other passengers managed to scramble on board. In total only 10,300 people should have been on the Wilhelm-Gustloff: some 8,800 civilians, including a large number of children, and about 1,500 members of the Wehrmacht, including 162 wounded, some 340 naval auxiliaries and 918 marines of the 2nd Submarine Training Division, who were to join the war effort again from Kiel. The Wilhelm- Gustloff had only a small escort, by first two and then just a single ship. Lieutenant Commander Wilhelm Zahn suggested darkening the ship’s lights to navigate through the shallow coastal waters which submarines could not reach. However, he was unable to convince Captain Friedrich Petersen, who decided, based on the ship’s position, to take a route through deep water north along the Stolpe Bank. An alleged radio message from the Navy prompted him to set the position lights to reduce the risk of collision with an oncoming minesweeper squadron. Therefore, the ship was visible even in the dark. In fact, there were no minesweepers on a collision course with the Wilhelm-Gustloff. The actual radio message or its sender could never be clarified. At Stolpmünde the Wilhelm-Gustloff was sighted around 2100 hours by the Soviet S-13 submarine. At 2116 hours, the submarine's commander, Alexander Ivanovich Marinesko, ordered four torpedoes to be launched from a distance of about 700 meters. One torpedo jammed, but three hit the Wilhelm-Gustloff on the bow under the E-deck and in the engine room. After a little over an hour, around 2215 hours, the ship sank about 23 nautical miles off the Pomeranian coast.Rescue attemptsShips rushing to the rescue managed to save only 1,252 people, including all four captains and the marine artist, Adolf Bock, whose reports and pictures were later published in “Stern” and other magazines. With the loss of 9,000 people, the sinking of the Wilhelm-Gustloff is, as of 2014, still the largest shipping disaster involving a single ship.What makes the sinking of the Wilhelm-Gustloff of particular interest is the high number of victims. Many factors contributed to this to prevent haphazard attempts to flee the ship and the onset of panic, about 1,000 people were ordered into ship's lounge and held there at gunpoint by officers. As the ship sank, they discovered the windows were made of bulletproof glass which prevented any escape. The fact Wilhelm-Gustloff also had too few lifeboats on board. Many had been taken off the ship in Gotenhafen. They were replaced by smaller rowing boats, which rapidly filled with water. To make matter worse on the night of the sinking, outside temperatures were as low as -20 °C, (-4 F) with the result that many of the remaining boats were frozen in their davits and could not be made sea-worthy. However, the large lifeboats belonging to the ship would never have been enough to save more than 10,000 people, because the ship and its rescue equipment were designed for just 1,900 passengers and crew. From the research by the Gustloff expert, Heinz Schon, it is accepted that the number of survivors was 1,239. While 1,252 people were rescued 13 died soon afterwards as a result of the disaster. But different sources have at different times provided significant deviations in the exact number of deaths (Source: Wikipedia, abridged).
Museum in Danzig, PolenDas Muzeum II Wojny Światowej in Gdańsk wurde nach ca. achtjähriger Planungs- und Bauzeit am 23. März 2017 offiziell eröffnet.
Adresse: Plac Władysława Bartoszewskiego 1, 80-862 Gdańsk, PolenTelefon: +48 58 760 09 60
The Blunks, a poor family with many children lived in Danzig, a German city. On 31st August 1939, behind their house, they experienced the beginning of the Second World War. The eldest son Paul, eager to escape his alcoholic, brutal father, voluntary joined the SS-Danzig Home Guard. After Poland was occupied by Germans, the Blunks had to move to Poland, where they received their own estate. The family lived in paradise until the end of the war, when the terrible deportation and murder of the former Polish landowners and the Polish "intelligenzia" began. In 1945, the family had to leave their farm in Adamowo. They fled in the winter with nine children and two horse-drawn carts from Poland as far as Malente, near Lübeck in northern Germany. From 1946, the family lived in an abandoned Air Force barracks.The narrator, Hedwig, got married. She moved with her husband to Hamburg. Hedwig, born in 1927, describes her experiences before, during and after the war as told to her daughter Marion. In 2014 Marion travelled to Poland trying to find memories of her ancestors.
Wilhelm hasn’t even had time to finish his training as a metalworker when he is conscripted into the Reich Labour Service and drafted into the Wehrmacht in April 1942. He and his comrades endure dull military service and tough drills. Yet it is not tank battles and military attacks that form the focus of this narrative, but the everyday life of a simple soldier and his relationship with the civilianpopulation. In October 1944, Wilhelm’s troop is housed in private quarters in East Prussia. In December 1944, Wilhelm and his comrades fight on the German-Luxembourg border in the Wehrmacht’s very last battle, in Echternach, against the Americans.*
Ein Film vom Regisseur Martin Eckermann aus dem DDR TV-Archiv von 1968.Hauptdarsteller: Manfred Krug und Ursula Karusseit. *
Es wird das Schicksal einer Frau dargestellt, die bedingt durch ihre Herkunft verurteilt war, ein Leben als Magd und Hausangestellte zu führen. Obwohl sie ehrlich und fleißig war, Tag und Nacht hart schuftete, scheiterte sie persönlich. Aus Verzweiflung und in der Hoffnung, ihr Leben doch noch positiv zu verändern, heiratete sie einen Mann, den sie nicht liebte. Das frisch verheiratete Ehepaar nahm 1939 hoffnungsvoll das Angebot der Nationalsozialisten an, einen Hof im besetzten Polen zu übernehmen. Trotz aller Schrecklichkeiten während des 2. Weltkrieges verlor sie nie ihre Achtung vor den Menschen und sich selbst. Die Schauspielerin Ursula Karusseit verkörpert in diesem Film sehr glaubhaft, wie es Millionen Frauen im und nach dem 2. Weltkrieg ergangen sein mochte. Doch es treten auch die Stärke der Frau, zum Beispiel vermittelt durch Hilfe für verwaisten Kinder denen sie Geborgenheit, Liebe und und Achtung gab, in den Vordergrund. Dieser Film ist eine Erinnerung an die damalige Zeit und gleichzeitig eine Mahnung an künftige Generationen, nie die Selbstachtung zu verlieren. Der Film endet mit dem System der DDR und der Bodenreform.
Wie sah die andere Seite des Krieges aus? Von dieser Seite her werden die Millionen Flüchtlinge, die aus dem Sudetenland, Böhmen und Mähren kamen, selten betrachtet.
Eine grauenhafte Wahrheit, die hier gezeigt wird.
Die exzentrische Millionärin Margarete Kämmerer (Christiane Hörbiger) geht 1990 in Jakarta an Bord eines luxuriösen Kreuzfahrtschiffes. Es ist die letzte Reise der unheilbar Kranken, sie hat Krebs im Endstadium. Ihr Neffe Sigi (Christoph Letkowski) soll nach ihrem Tod die Asche seiner Tante ins Meer streuen - in die lange Welle hinter dem Kiel. Eines Abends weckt in ihr die Stimme eines älteren Herrn am Nachbartisch schmerzhafte Erinnerungen. Die Nachforschungen ihres Neffen bestätigen, dass mit Martin Burian (Mario Adorf) tatsächlich jener Tscheche an Bord ist, der 1945 im Sudetenland viele Deutsche liquidieren ließ - darunter Margaretes erster Mann Sepp Pichler (Michael Steinocher). Um ihren Seelenfrieden zu finden, muss Margarete dessen Mörder richten. Doch Sigi will das Unglück abwenden und weiht Burians Schwiegertochter Sylva (Veronica Ferres) in die Rachepläne seiner Tante ein. Sylva, die von ihrem Mann verlassen wurde und seither Selbstmordgedanken hegt, stellt ihren Schwiegervater zur Rede. Dabei erfährt sie eine ganz andere Version der damaligen Ereignisse: Pichler war ein strammer Nazi, der Burians Bruder auf dem Gewissen hatte. Bei dem Versuch, zwischen den Todfeinden zu vermitteln, kommen Sigi und Sylva einander näher und verbringen die Nacht miteinander. Am nächsten Morgen sind Margarete und Martin spurlos verschwunden.Schuld und Sühne, Liebe und späte Vergebung: Das sind die Themen dieses ungewöhnlichen Melodrams nach dem gleichnamigen Roman des tschechisch-österreichischen Schriftstellers Pavel Kohout. Die "Traumschiff"-Kulisse täuscht eine Idylle vor: Christiane Hörbiger und Mario Adorf spielen zwei erbitterte Todfeinde, die sich im Zuge der Auflösung der politischen Machtblöcke im Jahr 1990 ihrer quälenden Vergangenheit stellen.
Der junge Sägewerkbesitzer August Habermann lebt, als angesehener Bürger, in einem kleinen Dorf im Norden Mährens. Sein Leben nimmt eine Wendung, als 1938 deutsche Soldaten ins Sudetenland einmarschieren. Der Historienfilm aus dem Jahr 2009 basiert auf der Romanvorlage "Habermanns Mühle" von Josef Urban und wurde mit dem Bayerischen Filmpreis ausgezeichnet. Regie führte Juraj Herz, in den Hauptrollen spielen Mark Waschke, Ben Becker und Hannah Herzsprung.