The Tomb of the Unknown Solider in Warsaw, Poland is the only surviving piece of what used to be the Saxon Palace. Among many structures the Germans blew up, Saxon Palace was destroyed in retaliation of the Warsaw uprising in effort to COMPLETELY demolish the city. Another structure worth noting in this square is a monument commemorating the victims of the 2010 tragic plane crash in which a large portion of the Polish Government died, including Polish President Lech Kaczynski and more than 90 others. They were on their way to a memorial service to mark the 70th anniversary of the massacre at Katyn Forest (that’s a whole other story) when the plane crashed near the Russian city of Smolensk.
Named for the sculptor who designed them, Karol Tchorek, they memorialize places of mass executions during German occupation. More than 200 are scattered throughout
In an effort to take back their city after 5 years of German occupation, struggling Poles rebelled in what is known as the Warsaw Uprising. Barely armed (it is said 1 in every 10 Poles had a rifle) and with the Germans brutality (going door to door, shooting every inhabitant including elderly, sick, women, and children), it was a losing battle from the start. Remnants can be seen throughout the city, especially in the concrete.
Mausoleum of Struggle & Martyrdom is one of the many places the Gestapo interrogated, tortured, and murdered. It is a free exhibit, just 2 hallways, and by far one of the most enlightening, moving, fascinating, devastating, and underrated (I was the only one there) sites I visited in Warsaw. That evening I remember feeling I was in a dark place…but
Personal belongings were taken upon arrival to a section of the camp referred to as “Canada”. Called “Canada” because people brought valuables (thinking they’d use at their relocation) and the Americas were viewed as prosperous. The Germans took anything of value, burned anything personal. These “Canada Warehouses” were subsequently destroyed by the Germans (along with gas and cremation facilities) to hide evidence of wrongdoing.
Correction, upon arrival they were allowed to keep one item…a belt…because they’d lose weight quickly.
I think guide said initially they’d photograph each inmate, but as cost of film and developing increased, they began using tattoos to save money. Also, as the death toll grew, tattoos were an easier way to identify the bodies.
Each prison uniform had a distinguishable patch so guards could quickly identify the category of prisoner. IE – political prisoners had a red triangle, criminals a green triangle, Jews a yellow star of David, Jehovah witnesses purple triangle, etc.
See bunk pic below, 5-6 people slept on each level.
Praga is known for street art. Artistic renderings among dilapidated buildings are concentrated throughout the streets of Ul. Rowna, Stalowa, Strzelecka, and Srodkowa.
Some legend, some true. Some humorous, some sad. All intriguing. Grudge for Eternity – Salvador & Tiburcia Carril Salvador was a prominent figurehead in Argentinian politics. Met his wife, Tiburcia, 25 years his junior, in Uruguay. Moved to BA where Tiburcia spent lavishly, opening lines of credit in any ‘haute couture’ shop she could. Outraged by…