Dawid Sierakowiak was born to a Jewish family in Łódź, Poland. He began his diary when he was 14, before the German invasion of Poland in World War II, and continued it until April 1943. He and his family were confined to the Łódź Ghetto, where Dawid meticulously recorded the deportation of his mother, the death of his father, and the starvation and suffering of all. He died of tuberculosis and starvation in the ghetto on August 8, 1943, two weeks after his 19th birthday. His younger sister Nadzia, the last survivor of the family, was deported to Auschwitz in 1944 and presumably put to death there. Five notebooks of his diary survived and were found after the war by Waclaw Szkudlarek, the former occupant of the apartment. The first two of the notebooks were published in 1960 in a volume edited by Lucjan Dobroszycki, a Holocaust survivor and scholar. The remaining three notebooks were purchased in 1967 by Konrad Turowski, a journalist.