The Polish Museum in the Swiss town of Rapperswil was established in 1870 upon the initiative of the Polish political emigrants. The main founder of the Museum was Count Władysław Broel-Plater, an insurgent of the November Uprising, who later became a political activist in France and Switzerland. The history of the Museum and its collections gives the Museum a special place among other museums worldwide. Housed in the old Rapperswil Castle which was restored by the Polish expat community, the Museum represents a joint effort of the Polish and Swiss people, an example of the co-existence of two cultures, and a proof that culture may facilitate closer links and understanding between nations. The Polish Museum’s holdings include a collection of old prints, the oldest of them dating back to 1494, a collection of 19th and 20th century painting, a gallery of late 18th century miniatures, collections of prints, militaria, numismatic items, orders and medals, as well as a rich cartographic collection.
The Museum owes the nature and great diversity of its collections to its donors – Swiss nationals and Polish emigrants for whom the attachment to the Polish art and culture was a reference point in their new existence away from homeland. In addition to its art collection, the Museum also houses a library and an archive. The library has a large collection of old prints and Polonica. The archive contains the records of the rich history of diplomatic, scientific and economic relations between Poland and Switzerland. It also stores the records of the social life of Poles abroad.
Visit the Polish Museum in Rapperswil!