The exhibition, entitled The Volunteer. Witold Pilecki and his mission in Auschwitz, focuses on Pilecki’s role in “alarming the world about the atrocities of the Third Reich in the Auschwitz concentration camp,” said Hanna Radziejowska, manager of the new office and co-curator of the exhibition.
The Volunteer is scheduled to run until March 2020.
In 1940 Pilecki, an underground operative, accepted a mission to uncover the fate of thousands of people being interred at a new concentration camp.
He allowed himself to be arrested by the Germans and sent to Auschwitz in order to smuggle out intelligence to the Allies.
In his reports, he wrote about the horrors of the camp and German plans to exterminate European Jews.
In 1943, after escaping from the camp, Pilecki reached Warsaw, and a year later fought in the Warsaw Uprising.
After the war, he went to Italy and joined the Second Corps, part of the Polish Armed Forces in the West. He was then sent to communist-ruled Poland as an intelligence agent.
He was captured and executed by Poland’s communist authorities three years after the end of World War II, following a show trial in which he was charged, among other things, with being a spy for “foreign imperialism.”