On this day, in Warsaw, 101 years ago, was born Anna Smoleńska author of the symbol of “Fighting Poland” during World War II.

On February 28th, 1920, in Warsaw, 101 years ago was born Anna Smoleńska a woman to be remembered. Her father, Kazimierz Smoleński, was a professor of chemistry at the Warsaw University, where they used to live in the house of professors at the N°75 of the Koszykowa street. When Poland was invaded by the nazis, she was a student of art history at the University of Warsaw and joined the resistance.

In 1942, she was a liaison at the Propaganda Department of the Current Bureau of Information and Propaganda (“BIP”) of the General Headquarters of the Union of Armed Struggle – the Home Army (“ZWZ-AK”) and member of the Gray Ranks (underground paramilitary Polish Scouting Association). She took part in a contest created by the same bureau to create the symbol of the resistance.

This symbol represents an anchor, Kotwica in Polish representing two letters,  PW meaning Pomścimy Wawer (“We shall avenge Wawer”). This sentence refers to the Wawer massacre (26–27 December 1939) which was one of the biggest massacres carried out on the Polish civilians at the beginning of the world conflict.

She was arrested by the Gestapo on November 3, 1942, and sent to the PAWIAK prison, where she says nothing despite tortures. On November 26th, 1942, she was sent to Auschwitz where she died of typhus. 3 other members of his family also perished in Auschwitz and his father was shot by the Gestapo in the ruins of the ghetto on May 7, 1943.

 Official camp photo. Original in KL Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum

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