Franciszek Koryciński

chemical engineer

Franciszek Koryciński was born on August 28, 1899 in the Małomotka estate. His parents were landowners Adam and Jadwiga, née Rutkowska. Even before the outbreak of World War I, after the sale of the property, his parents and three children moved to Płock. There he attended primary school and the Male Gymnasium of the “Szkoła Wyższa” Society. During his studies, he was a member of the “Sokół” Gymnastic Society. He also belonged to the Polish Military Organization. Upon regaining independence, on November 11, 1918, Franciszek Koryciński joined the forming Polish Army as a volunteer. After receiving the leave, in June 1919 he passed the secondary school-leaving examination. In December of the same year, he graduated from the First NCO School of Artillery in Warsaw. On leave of absence in November 1920, he enrolled at the Warsaw University of Technology, and […] on March 23, 1928, he completed his academic studies at the Faculty of Chemistry at the Warsaw University of Technology, completed his diploma thesis and passed the final diploma examination […] obtaining the title of Chemical Engineer.

In the same year he married Maria Henryka, née Ossowska. In 1931 his eldest daughter Wanda was born, three years later, in 1934, Anna, and in 1937, his only son, Zbigniew.

Franciszek Koryciński was initially employed as the deputy head of the Bullet Elaboration Department of the Ammunition Factory in Skarżysko. However, at the beginning of 1928, he started working as a chemical engineer in the “Lignoza” Joint Stock Company which produced explosives. He lived with his wife and mother in Krywałd, where one of the company’s production plants was located. In the interwar period, he was active in the Polish Western Union, and participated in courses organized by the League of Air and Gas Defense.

On the eve of the outbreak of World War II, he decided to secure his relatives by sending his mother to Warsaw, and his wife and children to her family estate in Wronowa. […] We had a car before the war. My father had already been called up for the army, he already knew there would be a war, he had already expected. […] he packed us, that is mother and three children, and took us to Wronowa. He himself, as an officer, took part in the September Campaign. I do not know how he managed to avoid being taken prisoner, in any case he came to Krywałd to see what had become his home and the wolf dog. His neighbors warned him, saying “Mr. Engineer, get away, because here the Germans have followed you three times, they’ve already checked the house three times, run away.” And my father, gullible, says after all: I have done nothing wrong to anyone. However, just in case, he did not spend the night at home, only on the floor of the shed. The Germans soon arrived and searched the house. There was no one in it, so they went to the shed and one of them started climbing up the stairs. Then the second of them said “there is no point in going in there, because if someone were hiding there, he would have pulled the ladder up”. The Germans left, and my father quickly packed and came to us in Wronowa – recalled his daughter Anna.

In January 1940, Franciszek Koryciński was arrested by the Germans. After some time, the mother received a letter written on a scrap of paper, in which the wedding ring was wrapped. My father threw the letter from a wagon at some station on the train they were taking him on. He wrote that they were taking him away and asked his mother to raise the children and not let them forget about him. So he had already guessed what would happen to him. Franciszek Koryciński was imprisoned on April 19, 1940 in the German concentration camp in Dachau, where he was given the camp number 4617. The reason for his imprisonment was the imposition of the so-called protective detention (German schutzhaft). Shortly thereafter, on May 25 of the same year, he was sent to prisoner number 437 in the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp. I remember that a postcard came from my father then and we found out that he was in the camp. On September 9, 1940 at 3.20 p.m. Franciszek Koryciński died. The cause of death was “severe colitis” (German: Todesursache: schwerer Dickdarkmkatarrh).

The property in Wronowa was confiscated and handed over to a German administrator. Franciszek Koryciński’s wife and her children fled in December 1940 to her mother in Warsaw. After the fall of the Warsaw Uprising, we were led on foot from Aleja Szucha to Pruszków. As my grandmother had no strength left and delayed the march, the Germans took her to a roadside ditch in front of our eyes and shot her there.