Warszawa / Ochota / 69 Filtrowa Street
  • Tenement building at 69 Filtrowa Street, 2015, photo: A. Barański, Pańska Skórka

  • Tenement building at 69 Filtrowa Street, 2015, photo: A. Barański, Pańska Skórka

  • Zofia Celińska in the room where the Kahans had been hiding, photo: family archive, POLIN Museum

  • Zofia Celińska, the building at 69 Filtrowa Street in the background, prewar, photo: family archive, POLIN Museum

  • Friends from the gymnasium, amongst them Zofia Celińska and Zofia Lewin, prewar, photo: family archive, POLIN Museum

  • Zofia Celińska, Warsaw, 2009, photo: J. Rajkowski, POLIN Museum

Zofia Celińska

“I was too young to make decisions. I had to convince my parents, which was no piece of cake”, recalls Zofia Celińska. In 1939, Zofia Lewin, her Jewish friend from the gymnasium, asked for help for herself and her family.

Zofia moved in to Filtrowa Street in 1940. “We shared the room, nobody questioned anything. We enrolled into the Business School. She attended her courses in the morning, I attended mine in the afternoons, since I was also working. My dad, a teacher, lost his job so I had to earn money”.

Half a year later they also took in Mr and Ms Kohan, Zofia Lewin’s uncle and aunt. “Rachela could barely speak Polish. Our servant girl must have told someone, and one day the concierge warned my father that a search of our apartment had been planned. I ran breathless to the school to warn Zofia not to come back home. They stayed one more night with us and then we moved them to our friends’ apartment.

Zofia Lewin was co-editor of Ten jest z ojczyzny mojej. Polacy z pomocą Żydom 1939-1945 (Righteous Among Nations. How Poles Helped the Jews 1939-1945) which was published in 1967.

» read more at www.righteous.pl