Poland during World War II

Hoover’s Polish holdings are particularly rich for the period 1939–45, largely thanks to its archives of the London Polish government in exile. Included are tens of thousands of documents and testimonies of former prisoners and deportees in Soviet Russia. Private collections, which were acquired later, provide an excellent complement to these government records.

Jan Karski Papers, Envelope H, Hoover Institution Archives

Story of a Polish World War II Secret Agent Via YOUTUBE


Poland Ministerstwo Spraw Zagranicznych Records

Polish ministry of foreign affairs

August Zaleski Papers

Polish foreign minister, 1926–32; president, government in exile, 1947–72

Władyslaw Anders Collection

General, Polish army

Poland Ministerstwo Informacji Records

Ministry of information of the Polish government in exile in London during World War II

Poland Ambasada in the Soviet Union Records

Polish embassy in the Soviet Union

Poland Ambasada in the US Records

Polish embassy in the United States

Poland Polskie Siły Zbrojne Miscellaneous Records

Armed Forces of the Polish government in exile (London)

Andrzej Pomian Papers

Polish émigré in the United States; journalist and author; president, Stowarzyszenie Polskich Kombatantów

Jan Karski Papers

Liaison officer and courier of the Polish government in exile to the Polish underground, 1939–43; author, Story of a Secret State, 1944

Wiktor Sukiennicki Papers

Polish American historian and political scientist; research analyst, Radio Free Europe, 1952–59

Stanisław Mikołajczyk Papers

Polish politician; prime minister, government in exile (London), 1943–44; second vice premier and minister of agriculture, 1945–47; president, International Peasant Union, 1948–64

Zygmunt Berling Papers

General, Polish army; deputy commander, Armia Polska w ZSSR, 1944–45

Władysław Gomułka Miscellaneous Papers

Polish communist leader; general secretary, Polska Zjednoczona Partia Robotnicza, 1956–70

Marian Spychalski Papers

Polish minister of defense, 1956–68


See More:

Poland during World War II Archival Collections
Poland during World War II Library Materials

Dwyer, Joseph D., ed. Russia, the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe: A Survey of Holdings at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace. Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 1980.

Filipiak, Miroslaw. Archiwalia Ambasady RP w Moskwie-Kujbyszewie (1941-1943) i Ministerstwa Informacji i Dokumentacji (1939-1945) w zbiorach Instytutu Hoovera Uniwesytetu Stanforda. Warszawa: Naczelna Dyrekcja Archiwow Panstwowych, 2002.

Scerbinskis, Valters. "Dokumenti par Latviju Huvera Instituta Arhiva Kalifornija,Latvijas Arhivi, no. 4, 2005.Scerbinskis, Valters. "Dokumenti par Latviju Huvera Instituta Arhiva Kalifornija," Latvijas Arhivi, no. 4, 2005.

Siekierski, Maciej. "Hoover Institution's Polish Collections: An Overview and a Survey of Selected Materials on Polish-Soviet Relations." Polish Review, 33, no.3 (1988): 325-32.

Siekierski, Maciej with Christopher Lazarski, compilers. Polish Independent Publications, 1976-1990. Guide to the Collection in the Hoover Institution Archives. Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 1999.

Stepniak, Wladyslaw. Archiwalia polskie w zbiorach Instytutu Hoovera Uniwersytetu Stanforda. Warszawa: Naczelna Dyrekcja Archiwow Panstwowych, 1997.

Sworakowski, Witold S. List of Polish Underground Collection (1939-1945) in the Hoover Library. Stanford, 1948. (supplemented and revised by Helena Sworakowska, Stanford, 1961).

Stalin’s OK to execute more than 25,000 Polish officers

Hoover Archives and the Katyn “Smoking Gun”

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Since the Russian Archival Service posted, on direct orders from President Dmitry Medvedev, proof that Joseph Stalin and his Politburo had ordered the Katyn massacre of Polish officers and officials on March 5, 1940, the Russian Archival Service’s website has received a steady stream of curious visitors.

Captain Donald B. Steward (center) and a British officer at Katyn, May 1943.

Hoover oral histories and newly declassified documents revive interest in Katyn Massacre

Monday, September 24, 2012

On March 5, 1940, the Soviet Communist Party Politburo ordered the execution of thousands of Polish military officers, government officials, and prominent civilians who had been arrested and imprisoned after the Nazi-Soviet attack on Poland in September 1939. The mass shootings of some twenty-two thousand people, some of them carried out in the spring of 1940 in the Katyn forest near the Russian city of Smolensk, are remembered as the Katyn Forest Massacre.


Touring Exhibition “Katyn: Politics, Massacre, Morality” Open to the Public at the Hoover Institution through January 29, 2011

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Hoover Institution Library and Archives announce the opening of touring exhibit “Katyn: Politics, Massacre, Morality.” The exhibition, produced by Poland’s Council for the Protection of the Memory of Struggle and Martyrdom, has been on display throughout Europe and the United States for the past six months.

Press Releases
Unit insignia of the Twenty-Second Artillery Supply Company of the Polish II Cor

Wojtek, the Bear of Monte Cassino

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Hoover Institution Archives has acquired the wartime memoirs of Stanislaw Kroczak, an officer with the Twenty-Second Artillery Supply Company of the Polish II Corps. In his memoirs Kroczak recalls his childhood in a village south of the city of Lwow (now Lviv), his fight against invading German and Soviet forces in September 1939, and his subsequent imprisonment and hard labor in the north of Russia. One charming part of the memoir concerns one of the best-known and celebrated animal mascots of the war, Wojtek the bear.



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