Emanuel Ringelblum’s Diary

In prison in Gęsia Street there are more than 1,300 prisoners, including more than 500 children.

Wide 16 maj 1

In prison in Gęsia Street there are more than 1,300 prisoners, including more than 500 children, some are at the disposal of Sondergericht [the Special Court] some of Auerswald. Sondergericht have already pronounced more than 200 death sentences, which have not been carried out yet. However, the posts, which the condemned are tied to, still stand on the execution site, where the daily walks of the prisoners take place. There is this indescribable lack of space, the capacity of the prison is 300 — 500 people, and now there are four times more. The cells are extremely stuffy. The intelligentsia is kept in better condition. The mortality rate in the prison is very high. [...]

The foreign delegation which visited the prison, did not understand how you could shoot people for passing to the Aryan side. „It is impossible,” they stated,”these people must have committed some crimes on the other side.” [...] Most of the prisoners are, apart from the smugglers, child beggars who have passed to the other side. They are the main offenders.


Emanuel Ringelblum, 16th May 1942, Warsaw

E. Ringelblum, “The chronicle of the Warsaw Ghetto”, Warsaw, 1988; diary from JHI collection, Ringelblum Archive; translated from Yiddish by A. Rutkowski

This website uses cookies to collect statistical data. If you do not accept it, please disable cookies in your web browser. I understand