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when you lived in Vilna ?

Mrs. Galinska. He was director of the National Health Insur-

Mr. KJERSTEN. How long had you lived in Vilna up to June 1941 ?

Mrs. Galinska. Since May 1935.

Mr. Kersten. Did something happen to you in the month of June
1941 ?

Mrs. Galinska. Something happened.

Mr. Kersten. In the early part of that month in this city, did you
notice anything unusual going on ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, all the time unusual tilings have been going
on. People have been arrested, put in prison, and deported to Russia,
since 1939.

Mr. Kersten. Since 1939?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. What happened to you in the month of June ? Were
you arrested ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, I had been arrested.

Mr. Kersten. On what day ?

Mrs. Galinska. On the l7th of June.

Mr. Kersten. Now, just a few days before June 17, 1941, did you
notice things in your neighborhood, in the city ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, They started on the 13th of June, at night,
to arrest people in the suburbs of the city and on the farms.

Mr. Kersten. Will you tell us something of the things that you

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. When I got the news of the mass arrests, I
went out to notify my husband, who left home at 5 o'clock in the
morning. I was sure he didn't know anything about it. I dressed
up and went. 'Wlien I walked there, I saw them take nuns from St.
Catherine's Church, and push them into a covered truck.

Mr. Kersten. You saw this?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, I did.

Mr. Kersten. Where were you at the time ?

Mrs. Galinska. On the corner of the street, just opposite the church.

Mr. Kersten. You were standing in the street?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, bent like that [indicating], because I just
don't know what happened to me. I couldn't straighten up.

Mr. ICersten. You saw some nuns being put into a truck?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. About how many ?

Mrs. Galinska. Twenty or thirty. I wouldn't know, now.

Mr. Kersten. From some particular convent?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. They opened a big door, you know, a gate.

Mr. Kersten. Wliat was the name of that church ?

Mrs. Galinska. St. Catherine's.

Mr. Kersten. Who was putting these nuns into the truck?

Mrs. Galinska. I guess it was the police. Plainclothesmen. They
waved everybody to the other side of the pavement.

Mr. Kersten. Were there soldiers there?


Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. And guns ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, and on the guns, bayonets.

Mr. Kersten. And these were the people putting these nuns into
trucks ; is that right ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Wliat happened after that ?

Mr. Galinska. To me, or to them ?

Mr. Kjersten. Well, that you saw ?

Mrs. Galinska. I went straight to my husband, where he worked —
pretended to work, at least — and told him about that. He told me
to go home, to prepare some food if it is possible, to buy something
and prepare it to go out from our home. He didn't believe that he
could be arrested. He always thought that since they hadn't done
it to then, they didn't know about him.

Mr. Kersten. A number of other people had been picked up in
their homes, had they ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. I saw people on the main street being taken
away in open trucks.

Mr. Kersten. Were there Soviet soldiers?

Mrs. Galinska. Always the soldiers.

Mr. Kersten. In the trucks ?

Mr. Galinska. Yes. You can tell they are soldiers. They are
differently dressed, in navy blue.

Mr. Kersten. And were there people in your block taken out this
way, in the block where you lived ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. Sometimes they took 2 or 3 families together ;
sometimes only 1 family.

Mr. Kersten. What is the next thing that happened ?

Mrs. Galinska. The next thing, I went home. I couldn't buy any-
thing on the way because all the shops had been closed. It was 11 or 12
o'clock in the morning. People were scared and closed their shops. I
came back and people began to come in with all kinds of gossip and
say who was already arrested.

I tried to prepare a small basket. We wanted to go to the country,
to stay with some people who had a farm. My husband came home
and took some of his documents with him, and we tried to leave, but
at the same moment when we wanted to leave our house, a young lady
came in to whose parents we were supposed to have gone, and she said
in the night her parents had been arrested and deported. They didn't
take here because she had a different name, so they let her go. She
walked all the way from a small village to Vilna, so it took her several
hours to come.

Mr. Kersten. What did you do about your husband then?

Mrs. Galinska. We went to some friends only two streets away.
She had a small cottage and a garden, and she decided to keep me for
the time being. I closed my door and we stayed there, from Saturday
about 3 o'clock, until Monday evening. Then people in this house
started to say that the owner of the house would get in trouble because
of us. Monday morning I decided to go home.

Mr. Kersten. You went alone, did you ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. I wanted to go alone because I already knew
that I wanted to get some information on what happened. Again, at
the same moment when I went out, the housekeeper of the people who


shared together the apartment said, "Don't go, because alread}^ they
came to arrest your husband," so I have to go back.

Now we didn't know what to do. If my husband didn't come to
work in the morning, they would call it sabotage, so something had
to be done about it.

Those people had been terribly scared that something could happen
to them. We decided to go to some other people. All day long we
stayed at some other people's home, on the same street, and again
someone came in and said they arrested my housekeeper. We put all
those people into a terrible condition, so I make up my mind to go
home and, as I said, I didn't think they would arrest me because I
knew he had the order in my husband's name. So Tuesday, I went

Mr. Kersten. Alone?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. What happened ?

Mrs. Galinska. As soon as I came home, the administrator of the
house who was in charge of some of the buildings on that street, he
let them know. He was observing everything that was going on.

So 7 people came in, 2 or 3 officers and plainclothesmen. It was
about 2 o'clock in the afternoon, and they left the next day at 10
o'clock after their visit with me.

Mr. Kersten. They took you at 10 o'clock the next day ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. I^rsten. How did they take you ? I mean was it in an auto-
mobile ?

Mrs. Galinska. No ; an open truck. They told me if I tell where
my husband is, they wouldn't take me, that they had no order to arrest
me. They arrested me without an order. All the time in Russia I had
been on his name.

Mr. Kersten. Where did they take you to on this truck ?

Mrs. Galinska. To Nowa Wilejka. It is about 12 kilometers from

Mr. Kersten. Wliat was done with you in that little town?

Mrs. Galinska. I was put into a cattle truck.

Mr. Kersten. Do you mean a railway truck ?

Mrs. Galinska. A railway truck.

Mr. Kersten. A cattle car?

Mrs. Galinska. A cattle car.

Mr. Kersten. Were there other cattle cars attached to that ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. How long did that train remain at that place before
it pulled out ?

Mrs. Galinska. At 10 o'clock I went in and left Saturday at 7
o'clock in the evening.

Mr. Kersten. In other words, about a day and a half ?

Mrs. Galinska. Almost 2 days.

Mr. Kersten. When the train pulled out, how many people were in
this cattle car that you were in ?

Mrs. Galinska. Fort5'-three.

Mr. Kersten. How were they, so far as adults and children are
concerned ?

Mrs. Galinska. There were 15 children from 1 month to 2 years.

Mr. Kersten. And the rest ?


Mrs. Galinska. Men and women, some separated from their hus-

Mr. Kersten. Did you notice anything about some women or wives
being separated from their husbands, there, at the train ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes; they had been. They were Lithuanian

Mr. Kersten. What happened to them ?

Mrs. Galinska. One was brought in with two boys. One was the
victime of polio and she begged them to stay a half -hour longer be-
cause something was coming for the boy, but they didn't agree to that.
She was very hysterical. She cried because she was sure that her hus-
band was taken to be shot.

Mr. Kersten. Were there other wives there ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, there was another Lithuanian woman. Just
before they left, she was taken away from her husband, and there was
a woman with a month-old baby boy, separated from her husband.

Mr. Kersten. Do you say you remember the names ?

Mrs. Galinsi^. I just wrote them down. I just remembered.

Mr. Kersten. The names of whom?

Mrs. Galinska. Thirty-nine persons. I can't recall the rest.

Mr. Kersten. Were there some Lithuanians and some Polish
people ?

Mrs. Galinska. Polish, Lithuanian, White Russians, and Jewish

Mr. Kersten. Some Jewish people?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. All being packed into this boxcar in a little place
near Vilna ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. They did it during the first and the second
day. All the time they opened the door and they pushed in some

Mr. Kersten. When the train pulled out, do you have any idea
about how many boxcars were in this train ?

Mrs. Galinska. No. Later on when the train came around some-
one counted 78 cars, but I don't know if it was so.

Mr. Kersten. Someone said they counted 78 cars?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Cattle cars?

Mrs. Galinska. Cattle cars.

Mr. Kersten. And yours was filled with 48 people?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. So far as you know, the others were filled with people
too; were they not?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; because I know about some people who have
been together, 56 persons in 1 car.

Mr. Kersten. How many days did you travel in this cattle car?

Mrs. Galinska. Seventeen.

Mr. Kersten. And what about food and water?

Mrs. Galinska. That was very bad. For the first 48 hours they
didn't stop at all. Then after 48 hours, they would stop at night, and
took out 2 people from the car, and they came back after perhaps
3 or 4 hours, because they always stopped the train on the outskirts.
Never at the town or railroad station. Far away. They brought in
two boxes of food.


Mr. Kersten. Anything would taste good after several days with-
out food.

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. They were given salt herrings, for one thing.

Mr, Kersten. And were they given enough water ?

Mrs. Galinska. Not enough water.

Mr. Kersten. How about the condition of these people who traveled
in the boxcars for 17 days?

Mrs. Galinska. It is beyond imagination. It was just horrible.

Mr. Kersten. How about the condition of the people in your car?

Mrs. Galinska. I don't know if I have to mention the man's name,
he was the Lithuanian burgomaster of Vilna, before they took over.

Mr. Kersten. Do you recall his name ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, of course, I do.

Mr. Kersten. Can you give us his name ?

Mrs. Galinska, I hope it can't do any harm to him, now.

Mr. Kersten. Don't mention his name if it will do any harm, now.

Mrs. Galinska. I think he is not alive any more, because I left him
there. He was the leader of the Lithuanian people in Vilna. He was
taken sick at Karachis with his wife, his daughter, and his grand-

Mr. Kersten. How about the 15 children on the car ?

Mrs. Galinska. Fifteen children, yes. One of them 1 month old

In my car no one died and no children — of course, there had been
sick people all the time. Some couldn't move at all.

Mr. Kersten. But in some of the other cars on the same train, did
any people die ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; some people died.

Mr. Kersten. En route?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Where did the train finally put you or where did you
get off the train ?

Mrs. Galinska, Barnaul.

Mr. Kersten. Was it in Siberia?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Do you know about how many miles that is from
the east of Moscow ; was it pretty deep into Siberia ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; it is.

Mr. Kersten. Where were you taken to ?

Mrs. Galinska. I had been taken to Barnaul with all those people
in the Lithuanian barracks. They were unfinished barracks. The
floors were only boards put on, not even nailed. We had to balance
ourselves when we walked. That was on a Saturday, and Tuesday
morning they started to take us on.

Mr. Kersten. Where were you taken to ?

Mrs. Galinska. To the wooden barrack. Some people were up and
some down.

Mr. Kersten. How many people in one barrack?

Mrs. Galinska. I was in one with 26.

Mr. Kersten. Were there a number of these people with whom you
traveled and with whom you lived who had been separated from other
members of their families?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes, yes, yes.


Mr. Kersten. That is, by "other members," I mean either husbands
or wives or children.

Mrs. Gaijnska. Only husbands and wives. Children had been to-
gether with mothers. I don't know of anyone being separated from

Mr. Kersten". Did you then have some kind of work to do after you
got to these barracks ?

Mrs. Galixska. Yes.

Mr. Kersi-en. What kind ?

Mrs. Galinska. From 6 o'clock in the morning until 6 in the eve-
ning. Hard work.

Mr. Kersten. What kind of work?

Mrs. Gaijxska. I have been a bricklayer. I dug in the streets.

]Mr. Kersten. A bricklayer ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Wliat did you build?

Mrs. Galinska. Big stalls.

Mr. Kersten. For what ?

Mrs. Galinska. For the barracks. They go through the whole

Mr. Kersten. Did you carry bricks ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; I did.

Mr. Kersten. Did you dig ditches?

Mrs, Galinska. Yes; I did.

Mr. Kersten. Did you work on building construction otherwise?

Mrs. Galinska, Yes. I was a mason for some time.

Mr. Kersten. Did you have to carry things up ladders and so on ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; I have. I have to do what you have to do to
build. I have to carry sand and lime and water. Everything in Russia
is not organized and everything was in different places, I would
have to bring one thing together and then make a mixture of this.

Mr, Kersten. Now, the first week after you got to this barracks in
Siberia, was there anybody that you know of who died there?

Mre. Galinska, Yes; children died, I think seven Lithuanian chil-
dren died. Small children,

Mr, Kersten, In one barracks ?

Mrs. Galinska. In all the barracks. I don't know what was going
on in the other barracks.

Mr. Kersten. How many people within your barracks ?

Mrs. Galinska. 205.

Mr. Kersten. And in the first week seven chidren died ?

Mrs. Galinska. A week or 10 days,

Mr, Kersten, Wliat was the death rate following that?

Mrs. Galinska, I really don't know, I think that many more men
died than women, because they just adjusted themselves better than
the men,

Mr. Kersten. How long did you remain in this barracks in Siberia?

Mrs. Galinska. October 26.

Mr. Kersten. That same year ?

Mrs. Galinsbl\. That same year.

Mr. Kersten, What happened then ?

Mrs. Galinska. Then I went together with a party and worked
for the Polish Army.


Mr. Kersten. As I understand, at that time there was an arrange-
ment whereby the Polish people could be released from Siberia ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. You were among those able to get out of that camp ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. We tried to do it on our own, because they
didn't really release us. They called us together, 5,000 people, and
they had a long speech that you should stay for the victory of the
Russian Army and so on, because now we are together. That is all
right, but we still preferred to work with our own authorities.

Mr. Kersten. There were a number of Polish people who didn't
get away, too, were there not?

Mrs. Galinska. Of course.

Mr. Kersten. Was there an incident while you were at this bar-
racks, about burying one of these children in a wooden coffin?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

Mr. Kersten. Tell us about that.

Mrs. Galinska. A small baby died, of a Lithuanian teacher, and
there was a nice man there — he died also — and he started to do things.
He wasn't a carpenter, it was just his hobby, so he did the coffin.^
They noticed that too much wood was missing, because they made
things with it. They saw the coffin when it was carried out, so they
were told to take the child out and give it back. The people started
to shout, so he let it go.

Mr. Kersten. When you made your way out of Russia, did you have
contact with the various Russian people?

Mrs. Galinska. In Russia?

Mr. Kersten. Yes.

Mr. Galinska. Oh, yes. All the time.

Mr. Kersten. And how did they treat you ?

Mrs. Galinska. Fine, fine. They are nice people.

Mr. Kersten. They treated you very well ?

Mrs. Galinska. Very well. They are kindhearted people.

Mr. Kersten. What did some of these Russian people tell you?

Mrs. Galinska. They told me if I ever got out, to tell the truth,
how hard they have it.

Mr. Kersten. Were there some, even of the young in the organiza-
tions, who talked that way ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes.

There was a telegraph girl and others. They got through a tele-
gram for me which allowed me to get out.

Mr. Kersten. Did some of the Russian people give you food and
so on?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes. Sometimes they would share their last piece
of bread with me. Of course, I gave them some things of mine, but
even if I didn't, some of them had been very kind.

Mr. Kersten. They treated you with kindness and charity ?

Mrs. Galinska. Yes ; they did.

Mr. Kersten. In contrast to the treatment ^f the NKVD and the
commandants ?

Mrs. Gattnska. Yes. I was very rundown and upset. I wanted
to do something foolish and a Russian woman told me, "Don't do it;
I am sure yon will get out from here; you will be happy again," and
so on, and I stopped thinking of doing something foolish.


Mr. Kersten. Thank you, Mrs. Galinska.

Before we adjourn, I will state that we contemplate having further
hearings in New York City commencing Thursday of this week at
10 o'clock in the morning in the Federal Courthouse on Foley Square,
room 36 in that building.

At this time, we will adjourn to an executive session, after which we
will adjourn until that time in New York, Foley Square, Thursday of
this week, 10 o'clock in the morning.

(Whereupon, at 3:30 p. m. the committee proceeded in executive



House of Representatives,

Baltic Committee,

Washington^ D. G.
The committee met, pursuant to adjournment, at 11:45 a. m., in
room 110, United States Courthouse, New York, N. Y., Hon. Charles
J. Kersten (chairman of the committee) presiding.

Present: Messrs. Kersten, Bentley, Bonin, Madden, Machrowicz,
and Dodd.
Also present : James J. McTigue, committee counsel.
Mr. Kersten. The hearing will come to order.
This is a continuation of the hearing of the special committee of
the House of Representatives, a continuation of the hearings that were
instituted in Washington on Monday of tliis week.

At the outset we wish to introduce into the record at this point a
letter that yesterday was sent to Mr. Andrei Vishinsky, pursuant to the
testimony that was given in Washington on Monday and Tuesday of
this week, which implicated in a very substantial way Mr. Vishinsky.
The letter invites him to appear before this committee in view of this
testimony in Washington and, Mr. Counsel, I will ask you to read
the letter.

Mr. McTiGUE. The letter is dated December 2, 1953, and reads as
follows :

Congress of the United States,

House of Representatives,
Washington, D. C, December 2, 1953.
His Excellency Andrei Vishinsky,

U. S. 8. R. Representative to the United Nations,
United Nations, New York, N. Y.
Dear Mr. Vishinsky : As you may know the SSd Congress, 1st session, author-
ized the establishment of a Committee to Investigate the Illegal Seizure of the
Baltic States by the U. S. S. R., because the fate of these small nations and of
many more similarly seized is a matter of present grave concern to us and other
free nations.

The committee has begun public hearings, the purpose of which is to hear and
evaluate all testimony by interested parties. In the customary manner the
committee welcomes the appearance of any and all witnesses who can contribute
valid information to this study, or, who, because charges have been made against
them, may wish to appear.

The duly accredited diplomatic representatives of free Latvia, free Lithuania,
and free Estonia have already appeared before the committee making serious
charges against the U. S. S. R.

And further, in the course of these public hearings, the committee has heard
testimony concerning the Latvian Government during the period 1938-41. The
sum total of this testimony, supported by subsantial documentary evidence,
including photographs, points to one Andrei Y. Vishinsky as the key political
commissar assigned by the U. S. S. R. to advance its political objectives in,
Latvia. Further, the charge is made that one Andrei T. Vishinsky was person-



ally present in Riga, Latvia, and from the Soviet Embassy and elsewhere
directed the military and secret-police forces of the U. S. S. R. in such manner
as to dissolve the legal Government of Latvia, and to cause a new election in
which the Latvian people were denied their right of free elections by secret
ballot. It is also charged that one Andrei Y. Vishinsky was responsible for
the death and deportation of thousands of Latvian men, women, and children,
and that he remains today as the outstanding unpunished criminal of our times.
Moreover, it is charged that said Andrei Y. Vishinsky is the same Andrei Y.
Vishinsky now serving as chief of the delegation of the U. S. S. R. to the United

You will agree, I am sure, that these are grave charges.

I am aware of the official position you take regarding the Baltic nations,
having read your December 1952 speech, stating that they willingly joined the
"liappy" association of "people's democracies" of the U. S. S. R. But the
committee is interested in your response to the specific attack against you as
an individual, referring to tlie above charges that you were personally present in
Riga, Latvia, to engineer the enslavement of Latvia and charging you personally
with prime responsibility for the horrors that followed in that tragic country.
It is concerning this specific personal attack against you, therefore, that the
committee is interested in your response.

The American tradition of justice has always held that the accused be given
every opportunity to state his side of the case and to support his case with such
other witnesses and documentary evidence as he deems appropriate. This
inviolable principle applies in the courts of the United States as well as in the
conduct of investigations by committees of the Congress of the United States.
The upholding of this principle, so vital to the preservation of all human freedom,
demands that no exceptions be made to it.

Consequently, the committee extends to you an invitation to appear before
it in order that you may have an opportunity to answer this specific charge.
Since the committee will hold hearings in New York City on December 3. 4, and 5,
room 36, Federal Courthouse, Foley Square, New York City, before undertaking
like hearings throughout the United States, it is hoped that you will find one
of these dates convenient. However, the committee is prepared to hold special
hearings in New York City if you find these suggested dates inconvenient.

Awaiting your reply, I am

Charles J. Kersten, Chairman.

Mr. Kersten. This letter will be made a matter of record. It is so
ordered. It will also be on the record that this letter was mailed

Who is your first witness?

Mr. McTiGUE. The first witness is Mr. Grantskalns.


Mr. Kersten. Will yon raise yonr right hand, please? You do
solemnly swear that yon will tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing
but the truth, so help you God ?

Mr. Grantskalns. I do.

Mr. Kersten. Have a chair, please.

Mr. McTiGUE. Before proceeding with the witness, Mr. Chairman,
I would like to make reference to the fact that as we go along with
this testimony I will introduce certain photographs which have already
been identified by Mr. Jekste in Washington and which are a part of

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