Danzig-Wonneberg / Gdansk-Ujescisko

This is a private page of nostalgia, which has nothing to do with mathematics. 

Contents of this page
Surroundings of Wonneberg / Ujescisko
Inhabitants of Wonneberg
Leaving Wonneberg
End of war
The bad times after 1945
Wonneberg /Ujescisko today
Old Pictures of Wonneberg
Old Photos of places in the surrounding
Old Stories
New Pictures
Danzig-Wonneberg/Gdansk-Ujescisko on the Internet
To the Main Page "Mathematische Basteleien"

...... I spent my first eight years from 1937 to 1945 at a small village south of Danzig with the name Wonneberg, now Ujescisko. 

My parents grew up at Wittenburg, Kreis Briesen. In 1930 my father came to Wonneberg as a young teacher and organist and started a family. 

We left Wonneberg in January 1945. 

I returned to Wonneberg as a tourist in 1970 and 2006. 

In September 2008 I got connections to two inhabitants of Ujescisko, Tomasz Zukowski and Jacek Kalinowski, with help of the site  http://www.ujescisko.com. They were interested in the history before 1945. So I looked back and made this page. 
In the meantime (May 2012) the site is closed. I would like to run this web page, which originally should be a supplement of the Polish site,  further for several reasons.

Surroundings of Wonneberg / Ujescisko   top
...... ... Surrounding villages in German and Polish. 

Maps top
Map of 1784
Wonneberg is a very old village. 

It is already drawn on a map of 1784. 

You can even go back to the 14th century: 
You can read on the page Preußische Regesten (Regesten=collection of documents) about 1341:
PrUB 3.423 — [1338-1341]
"Der Komtur von Danzig Winrich von Kniprode verleiht dem Konrad Münzmeister als Schulzen das Dorf Wonneberg (Kreis Danziger Höhe) mit 38 Hufen zu kulmischem Recht."
Quelle: http://www.prussia.uni-erlangen.de/1341.html#1341

This is a hint that Wonneberg is a foundation of the Deutschritterorden.

Old Map 
... Wonneberg 1918 

Map of the time after Wold War II 
...... Wonneberg in 1945    (Russian map).......................................

Wonneberg heute mit Google Maps

...... This is special: Wonneberg was an Angerdorf. 

A main and a side street formed an island, the Anger (yellow). 
There were three of the official buildings of the village, the shop/pub (14), the school (15) and the smithy (16). 
Then there were a small and a big pond, a meadow and the pump house (17). 
Most of the people took their drinking water from there. This was the place to meet and to talk to each other. 
There were five farms (5000 ha altogether) on the right-hand side, the workers lived on the left-hand side. Most of them worked on the farms.
The church (13) was outside the Anger on the main crossing of the village. 
Usually the church was also situated on the island of an Angerdorf.

Inhabitants of Wonneberg     top
We, my two elder brothers and I, tried to make a list of all inhabitants of Wonneberg and to find their new homes after the war.
...... A big help was the "Heimatortskartei für Danzig-Westpreußen (1936-1963)" (=register). 
Obviously nearly all inhabitants got in touch with this place in Lübeck and sent them their address before and after 1945 in handwriting. 
The Heimatortskartei is located at the "Lastenausgleichsarchiv des Bundesarchivs" in Bayreuth now. I made contact with them. You can only look at it there.
You can also find the Heimatortskartei in the Mormone's library. It is good luck that James Smith of the Lademann family from Wonneberg could provide the microfilm with the datas and send them to me in the form of 76 pictures. The numbers with two digits in the following list is the number of a picture. The families with xx are missing in the collection, but we knew them. 
There are also family names from Neu-Wonneberg, which we don't know with the exception 75 Herrmann. Then there is a card of the innkeeper of Hölle, 14 Puttkammer, and the one of my first teacher 02 Miss Tschiersky, who taught in Hölle, but lived in Danzig. 

This web page has been online now (07/2013) for 5 years. Members of several families found this web page and enlarged it or corrected errors.

We succeeded in finding the names of about 42 families, who lived in Wonneberg before 1945.
xx Archut
59 Beyer
xx Cozch
64 Dombrowski
65 Domrös
66 von Dühren, Artur (Wirt)
67 von Dühren, Felix (Bauer) 
xx Flissikowski
xx Grabowski
70/71 Grocholl
71 Groddeck
72 Hahn
12 Prang
xx Richert
37 Hansekowski
74 Heering 
47/48 Hinz
49 Hoffmann
49/50  Hübner
56 Köller 
29 Konrad 
xx Krause
xx Krönke
31 Krüger 
33 Lademann
34 Lehre
35 Liesandt
36/38/39 Lischnewski 
40 Mahlau 
43 Mirau – Sielaff
xx Pawlowski
xx Rosalewski 
xx Rosengarten
16/18/19/20 Rösner
xx Siek
xx Spell
22 Splanemann
23 Splitt
xx Stolp
01/28 Taube
03/04 Wittstock 
06 Ziebarth
06 Ziehm.

...... My father's card was also among them. You can possibly read it. The quality is often bad, because words written with ink were copied.
The card gives informations about: 
Day  and place of birth, religion, family status
Last residence before 1945 
Addresses after 1945
Sometimes there is another card with the wife's and children's names.

Houses before 1945
The attempt follows to assign the families to the houses.
...... 01 Wittstock
02 Hahn
03 Farmer Hering, Mrs. Schwarz
04 Farmer Groddeck, Lehre
05 School 1st to 4th year (Ms. Schäfer).
06 Farmer Taube
07 Farmer Arthur von Dühren
08 Farmer Prang
09 Sielaff, Mirau 
10 Splitt
11 Worker's' houses:
Konrad, Domrös, Pawlowski, Dombrowski, Rosalewski, Rosengarten, Ziehm(?).
12 Mrs. Rösner 
13 Parish priest house Hoffmann, Church
14 Shop and pub von Dühren
15 School 5-7 Köller
16 Smithy Archut, Liesandt
17 Pump house 
18 Workers' houses - Splanemann, Mahlau, Hansekowski / Grocholl, Flissikowski, ... 
19 Mahlau
20 House owned by the village - Sieg, Lademann and the policeman Krüger.
21/22 Cozch, Lischnewski, Hübner, Ziebarth, Krönke, Richert
There is a gap between 2 and 3. This was the ground (1ha), which belonged to the teacher. 

Leaving Wonneberg top
We and only some families left Wonneberg before conquered by the Russian army. 
Attempt of Using the Train 
We wanted to go westward by train. 

This is the ticket written in 1945, 27 Jan.

But the train returned to Danzig after some hours for reasons whatever.

Over the Baltic Sea
...... Only the seeway was open. We found the ship Emsstrom, which stayed in the harbour of Neufahrwasser until a convoy had assembled.

I found this statement about it on the internet:
"Am 1.Februar 1945 verließen die großen Passagierdampfer Hansa (21.133 BRT), Hamburg (21.691 BRT), Cap Arkona (27.571 BRT) und weitere Schiffe die Danziger Bucht und erreichten die westliche Ostsee."

The passenger liner Wilhelm Gustloff, where we got no place, left Gotenhafen on its own with about 10.000 people on board already in January 30, 1945 and sank on the same day.

Most inhabitants stayed in Wonneberg and had to live under Russian and then Polish administration. 
These were hard times. Many of them left Wonneberg still in 1945. All Germans were banished in 1947/48 except they became Polish. Only two families stayed upon my investigations.

End of War    top
Wonneberg was occupied by the Russian army on March 25, 1945. (Source: http://www.389id.de/Kampfhandlungen/Kurland.htm)
The inhabitants had to leave before the fights and were allowed to return after 10 days. Then several houses were destroyed or occupied by Polish families.

The date is confirmed by Dmitri Turenkov, the grandson of the commander of the Russian 59th tank brigade.
He discovered this web page and wrote inter alia: "I am a grandson to the commander of 59th guards tank brigade... 
Wonneberg was taken on March 25th, at 19.30, by the 3rd battalion of 59th guards tbr. Feel free to mention my grandfather's name on your growing  page: guards colonel Afanasy Turenkov, the commander of 59th guards tank brigade of the 8th guards tank corps. Decorated with 7 orders, wounded 4 times."

After the  Potsdam Agreement
This newspaper cutting was interesting for the Germans and worked the beat in that time.

Thus Germany was reduced and thus the German Reich was splitted. 

1.5 million people were brought to the western Baltic Sea on this way up to April 1945, 3000 people died.

1937 and 1945


Germany lost 1/3 of its areal. There were nearly seven millions of refugees. 
This was one price we had to pay because of our Nazi regime, which had brought so much horror and evil to the world.

The bad times after 1945     top
...... We found the new residences of 22 families. 

The residence is marked by a red point. The letters are the first ones of the family names. 

This is sure:
The families spread out all over Germany after war and had to restart at the place, they were sent to.
You can imagine: Refugees were not welcome. 

...... We came to Lippe-Detmold.

This is the Bezugsschein für Lebensmittelkarten  (licence to get food cards), issued in Danzig-Emaus and in Lippe. 

My parent subscribed to three newspapers for refugees against being homesick.

My father ordered a bottle of Machandel and one of Danziger Goldwater by mail order selling several times. We teased him: We couldn't remember that he had bought these specialities of Danzig before 1945.

Anzeige von 1951

Danziger Goldwasser heute

There are a number of books as heritage of my parents. It is interesting that there are two yearbooks 1950 of the old and the new home. I interpret this as a sign that they had accepted their new home. 

I called this chapter "The bad times after 1945". This was the name not only in our family. 
Maybe you understand this name, when I write down what happened in our family from 1945 to the first 1950s and then no more.

> Cooking sugar beets, pressing out the juice, and cooking it for hours until syrup develops
> Collecting wild raspberries and blackberries for making jelly
> Eating rutabaga soup or bird cherry soup
> Collecting ants in sugar and fishing maggots from the surface of pea and barley soup
> Collecting spikes on the empty fields and exchange them to flour.
> Collecting beechnuts and exchange them to oil
> Eating the young leaves of the weeds ground elder as lattice
> Making of a rabbit hutch, feeding and slaughtering them
> Being content with a slice of bread daily and completing with bitter corn bread
> Taking an empty can to school and taking part in free school meals as a "refuguee child". Thank you, dear Quakers in the USA.
> Growing tobacco for father's consumption
> Roasting barley, grinding, and making coffee (Muckefuck) of it
> Walking in wooden shoes
> Riding a bike with iron spirals instead of rubber tires
> Subscribing the communist newspaper VOLKSECHO and keeping it as toilet paper
   Later we could order the FREIE PRESSE.
> Using a colander made from a steel helmet
> redying the Nazi ensign or parachute silk and making clothes of it
> clearing stumps und using them as firewood

I still today respect my father's earth hoe.

Wonneberg /Ujescisko today 
The German Wonneberg got the Polish name Ujescisko in 1945.
....... I tried to draw a plan of the village in 2006.
We recognized the red houses mostly built in red bricks. 
The church was partly destroyed in 1945 and later taken down. 
There are trees, where the cemetery once was. 
We could not recognize the farms. Many houses were destroyed in 1945 at the end of the war.
The small pond is filled up, the pump house disappeared. Now there are a transformer house and the bus station of Ujescisko.
The school, the smithy and the shop/pub had become apartment houses.
The houses of Wonneberg lay around the Dorfanger. Today the village as a part of Gdansk has grown in all directions. There are also many new settlements on the way to Lostowice (Schönfeld) and Zakoniczyn (Zankenzin). So the traffic was dense in 2006. We could hardly cross the streets. 

In the meantime (2013) Wonneberg had grown more and even belongs to the light-rail system of Danzig. 
Lidl and Netto have opened their supermarkets.

Old Pictures of Wonneberg    top
Two postcards
Fortunately a postcard with the church and a view of the main street is saved.
My mother wrote it to her cousin in Mühlheim/Ruhr in 1942.

...... In December 2019 Gudrun Kirstein from the Rosengarten family sent me a second postcard of Wonneberg.

There is the big pond and the church, the small pond with the school at the far right below on the right, and the pub von Dühren below on the left. 

Sketch of the church surrounding
1 Vicarage
2 Entrance
3 Entrance to the steeple
4 Main entrance to the church
5 Fences surrounded vicarage, church und cemetery
6 View to the church on the postcard 
7 View to the main street on the postcard 

I found this drawing on the internet once

Entrance of the church before 1945 

Gudrun Kirstein also sent me a photo from the inner church.

The cemetery
When I visited Wonneberg in 1970, many ruins of gravestones lay about. I couldn't find a German name. 
Arne Vollmann sent me an email. 

"Yesterday I got the photo of the gravestone of the last resting place of my great-great-granduncle Friedrich Puttkammer and his wife Alwine from Christinenhof. The Polish genealogist told me that the former cemetery will be cleaned by "good spirits". 


October 2019

October 2019

... Former school (15) in 1930

...... Former school (15) in 1939

The von Dühren family
Kirsten Mrosseck found this page on the internet, because she knew that her grandmother was brought up in Wonneberg as the daughter of the smith Paul von Dühren.  She found a photo from 1918 (!) of her family in front of the smithy (Number 16 in my drawing).

... Farm Felix von Dühren before 1945

Rainer Köller sent me this photo.

The Heering family
Karin White, née Heering, discovered this web page in November 2009. She is Franz und Dora Heering's daughter, who owned a farm and a sandpit northwest of Wonneberg. The sandpit was replaced by a large cemetery.
The buildings of the farm were destroyed during the fights around Danzig in spring 1945.
When I visited the village in 1970, I only found the former administrator's house. The beech tree on the left belonged to the former garden. 

...... You can see the position of the farm buildings with the help of the old map from 1918.

1 dwelling, 2  cow shed and pigsty, 3 barn, 4 horse stable, 5 room for carriages and smithy, 6 administrator's house.

Karin sent me some photos.


Franz Heering, Frau Schwarz, and Dora Heering on their carriage

Franz Heering in front of the stable in 1932 

Maybe the following two photos were taken in the village in former times.

This is a photo taken from the first floor of the dwelling. You see the school with the two chimneys in the centre.
The spire of the church is just right beside the fir tree on the right. 

The scattering of trees and the fountain on the left are unknown.

We have a better feeling in the interpretation of the following photo.

This is a view to the farm Prang with a chimney and to two willow trees, which stood along the big pond. 

Felix von Dühren's farm is on the very left. 


The Mirau family
I contacted the grandchildren of the Mirau family (9). There are still two old photos in their family. 
It is unkown, how old they are and who are the persons on the first photo.

The house of the von Dühren family (14) in the background, the shop on the left, the pub on the right.

House of the Mirau family

The Groddeck family
Stefan Busse, Mrs. Groddeck's nephew, contacted me in June 2015. He provided the following photos.

Dwelling house and entrance to the yard

Dwelling house - view from the yard

Newer photos
This is history, too. You can still see the pump. 
...... View from the pump house over the small pond to the former school (15) in 1965.

Georg Hahn took it in 1965.

... This is the same place in 2006.

Old Photos of places in the surrounding    top
...... ... Surrounding villages in German and Polish. 


Estate Zankenzin, photo by  Barbara Lewko, 1993

Estate Zankenzin, photo by Barbara Lewko, 1999


Estate Schönfeld, provided by Bartosz B.

Emaus und Hölle

School Emaus

Ruin of the school Hölle

provided by Bartosz B.

Old Stories   top
Bruno von Stolzenberg
...... A monument was erected in remembrance of the former cemetery in November 2008. 
Inscription: ... Former protestant cemetery at Wonnenberg ...
This is a great gesture of the present inhabitants of Wonneberg/Ujescisko.

This brings back memories:
As a seven year old boy I watched the funerals from the street many times before 1945. Schucker-Brunchen (alias Bruno von Stolzenberg) stood in the focus. I could watch him from a safe distance. We feared him in the streets. The older children teased him, so he chased all children and waved his walking stick.

It was said that Schucker-Brunchen was a former priest. He was a bit confused. He visited *all* funerals in and around Danzig/Gdansk and gave condolences. He lived from the small money he received then.

Schucker-Brunchen became as Schugger Leo a character of the world literature. He played an important underpart in the novel Blechtrommel (The Tin Drum) by Günter Grass. 
Grass: Near the end of World War II the number of funerals had increased so much that even Schugger Leo lost the overview. 

The big pond
If you look for Wonneberg/ Ujescisko on a map, you orientate by the big pond. It is a characteristic of the village. -
Discussions in our family about old times often deal with the pond. "My family" means my two elder brothers, who were 15 and 16 years old, when we left Wonneberg. They helped me to tell the following stories. 

The big pond had no inflow and no outflow and was filled by the surface water (rain). It was only about 80 cm deep. It was deeper in front of the street between the farmers Arthur von Dühren and Prang, so that the horses could dip in for washing. - The pond was the cattle watering tank. The horses were driven to the North West corner every day in the morning, so that they could drink water.  They already were harnessed as teams to two or four. In the evenings also the cows came to the ponds for drinking. 

The youth didn't swim in the pond very often. The ground was muddy and the water became easily dirty. The children learned how to swim in a little pond North of Wonneberg in direction Hölle. You can still see it on the Russian map above.

The children had many more activities:

Obviously the pond was biologically in balance, because there lived fish, especially crucian carps. They caught the fish with a special technique: They opened an empty paillasse with two sticks and then two boys pulled it through the shallow water. Later on, when the fish were fried, nobody wanted to eat them. They were full of bones and the mud gave them a bad taste.

The winters were hard and long. The big pond was frozen all winter. Skating was the favourite sport. 
The carrousel was favoured: The older children drove in a post in the centre of the pond. They fastened one end of a long rope on the post. A skilled ice-skater took the other free end and made wide circles with the tight rope. More ice-skater hold fast to the rope and made circles with smaller radii. If someone had to let loose the rope, he glided over the ice surface with applause by the others.

In January the slaughter from Emaus came to the pond and cut out rectangular floes with an axe. He pulled them out of the pond, shred them to smaller pieces, brought them with his lorry to his cellar and cooled his meat products in warmer seasons. When the floes still lay in the water, running on them was a favourite sport. Somebody jumped from floe to floe and had to hit on the centre, so that the floe could carry for a moment. It was dangerous to come under the ice surface. This happened once with a boy from Neuwonneberg, who was rescued with difficulties. When the slaughter left back a free water surface or during thaw, the children formed bigger floes and used them as floats.

When we visited Wonneberg/Ujescisko in March 2006, we found a children's playground and some benches on the south east corner in front of the former house of Mirau family (photo).

Before 1945 there was a fair with a roundabout and some other amusement attractions every year on this place. 

There was also the fire engine house. 

This was the place, where the slaughter's lorry stood for transporting the ice.

New Pictures top
Jacek Kalinowski sent me the following photos.
He combined old photos with new ones.






Vor 1942 und Februar 2009
Vor 1942 und Februar 2009

This is new to us: Water lilies on the big pond :-). (Photo by Jacek Kalinowski, 2008)

There are many new houses South of old Wonneberg/Ujescisko.

This is the settlement "Sztery pory roku" (Four Seasons) in Zankenzin.
On the left and in the foreground there is a new school.

There is also the new Catholic church St. Padre Pio. The spires are 35m high. 

Danzig-Wonneberg/Gdansk-Ujescisko on the Internet       top


Axel Katins

Bund der Deutschen Minderheit Danzig
Bund der Deutschen Minderheit Danzig / Zwiazek Mniejszosci Niemieckiej Gdansk
Geschichte der Deutschen in Danzig nach 1945

Schucker Brunchen und Blum AntjeEine Erinnerung an Bruno (Schucker Brunchen)

Gdansk (https://www.gdansk.pl/de/)

Heimatortskartei - Liste der Filme bei den Mormonen


Ujescisko-Lostowice, Danzig, Freie Stadt Danzig, Ostgebiete des Deutschen ReichesHeimatvertriebener
Angerdorf, Wilhelm Gustloff (Schiff)Heimatortskartei

Gdansk (official site)

Google Streetview Wonneberg

Ujescisko-Lostowice, Gdansk, Free City of Danzig, Former eastern territories of GermanyHeimatvertriebene,
Family History Library (Mormon Church)

Tak wygladalo Ujescisko przed wojna    (Google Übersetzer: "Dies war der Vorkriegs Ujescisko")

Gdansk (official site)

W?ócz?ga po ziemi che?mi?skiej  (Eine Radtour durch Wonneberg)

Ujescisko-Lostowice, Ujescisko

Videos by Jacek Kalinowski at Youtube 
Gdansk Ujescisko... 20.06.2007
Cmentarz Ujescisko - pokaz slajdów - 13.05.2008
Wonneberg i Ujescisko... - 23. Febr. 2009
Ujesciska Góra / Wonne-Berg - 24. Juli 2009
Z albumów mieszkanców Ujesciska - 25.07.2010
Zima - Ujescisko - 14.01.2010
Nowa trasa tramwajowa / Neue Straßenbahn-Trasse - 11.05.2012

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©  2008, enlarged 2013, Jürgen Köller