Collection of photographs and postcards of the Polish Museum in Rapperswil - part 3

History of the Polish Museum in Rapperswil 1868-1948

By The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Postcard "Mausoleum with the heart of Kościuszko"The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Mausoleum with the heart of Tadeusz Kościuszko (1897-1927)

Regardless of the rich and often priceless collections of the Museum, both in their material as well as in their historical value, the most important memento and the castle's "Ideological Centre" was the urn containing the heart of General Tadeusz Kościuszko, the Commander of the 1794 Uprising who died in 1817 in Solothurn.

Entrance to T. Kościuszko’s MausoleumThe Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Entrance to the Mausoleum of T. Kościuszko

Postcard "Mausoleum with the heart of Kościuszko"The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Postcard "Mausoleum with the heart of Kościuszko", From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Two years later it was placed in a specially designed by an architect Xavier Müller. The heart of the Commander was placed in fitting surroundings - the interior was decorated with paintings presenting among other things Angels and the Mother of Good from Częstochowa by a Munich painter Stephan Herweg.

Postcard "Mausoleum with the heart of Kościuszko"The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

The bronze urn sculpted by Wincenty Trojanowski came to Rapperswil in 1895.

Mausoleum with the heart of Tadeusz Kościuszko (viev from XIX c.), 1906, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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10A Uroczystości odsłonięcia Hotel Schwanen - Polacy1 (1905)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Rapperswil as a place of exile for Polish emigrants

Keeping such priceless mementos, the castle soon became a destination of expeditions of the countryman and countrywoman spread throughout the world. In some years the number of visitors was close to twenty thousand. The Museum had not just made collections available to visit but was from the very beginning a meeting place for patriots, a place to celebrate anniversaries of uprisings or a place to celebrate the anniversary of the May 3rd Constitution. Publishing was developed: historic papers and journalistic articles written by people connected with the Museum were published, as well as catalogue collections.

Guests arriving to Rapperswil at the ceremony organised by the Polish Museum (1905)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Poles arriving in Rapperswil on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of birth of poet Mikołaj Rej of Nagłowice (1905).

Guests arriving to Rapperswil at the ceremony organised by the Polish Museum (1905)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Polish People in Rapperswil, 1912, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Trip of the Polish Colony from Zurich, 1917, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Council of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil (1910-08-10)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Władysław Plater died in 1889 and was buried on the castle's grounds. After Plater's death, the Museum was looked after by activists in exile, becoming a place for their annual general meetings.

Council of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil, 1912-08-08, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Council of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil, 1912-08-08, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Council of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil, 1912-08-08, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Krystyn Ostrowski (1811-1882)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

The activists gathered around the Polish institution in the late 19th and early 20th century included Krystyn Ostrowski (founder and member of the Association of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil - pictured), Agaton Giller, Józef Gałęzowski, Karol Lewakowski, Włodzimierz Rużycki and Konstanty Żmigrodzki.

Zygmunt Miłkowski (1824-1915) (1908)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Zygmunt Miłkowski (1824-1915) actively took part in the creation of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil, acting within its management council.

Stanisław Zieliński (1880-1936)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Stanisław Zieliński (1880-1936), head of the library of the Polish National Museum in Rapperswil from 1910.

Zygmunt Laskowski (1841-1928)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Zygmunt Laskowski (1841-1928) was a Polish emigration activist in Switzerland, he also established the Museum of Anatomy in Geneva and held the function of director of the Polish Museum in Rapperswil.

Włodzimierz Rużycki (1839-1914) (1908)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Curator Włodzimierz Rużycki (right) accompanied by Dr Naegeli on the stairs leading to the Castle.

Grave of Włodzimierz Rużycki, 1921, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Gravestone of Władysław Plater, Karoline Bauer and Henryk Bukowski, 1923, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Works in the library, 1913, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Stanisław Zieliński, librarian of the Polish National Museum, with his assistant Adam Lewak ordering the collections.

Works in the museum, 1914, From the collection of: The Polish Museum in Rapperswil
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Curator of the Polish National Museum Konstanty Żmigrodzki with his assistant Stanisław Trembiński during conservation works.

Museum Directors with reconstruction plans for the castle (1916)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Rapperswil collections leaving for Poland (1927)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Rapperswil collections leaving for Poland - 1927

After Poland regained its independence, in accordance with Władysław Plater's will, the collection of the Museum was transported in a special train to Poland in 1927. Besides the urn with the Tadeusz Kościuszko's heart, which was escorted by Swiss officers, 13 carriages carried around 3 thousand works of art, 2 thousand historic memorials, 20 thousand prints, 9 thousand medals and coins, 92 thousand books and 27 thousand manuscripts. Part of the Rapperswil collection, mainly the archive material and the library, was destroyed in Warsaw during World War II. The works of art, patriotic mementos and arms survived and were distributed among different institutions in the country.

Rapperswil collections leaving for Poland (1927)The Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Credits: Story

Curator of the exhibition:

Radosław Pawłowski

Text correction:

Anna Buchmann
Anna Tomczak

Digitalization of postcards and photographs:

Radosław Pawłowski
Ewa Wąsik

Digitalization of postcards and old photographs, together with the current online exhibition, were financed from the funds of the Senate of the Republic of Poland within the framework of the programme strengthening the position of Polish and Polonia communities in the countries of their residence.

Developments of texts:

A. Badach, A. Piotrowska, "Muzeum Polskie w Rapperswilu", Warszawa-Rapperswil 2008,
H. Zielińska, "Die Polnische Freiheitssäule in Rapperswil, Rapperswil 1979,

Copyright: Archiwum Muzeum Polskiego w Rapperswilu.

www.polenmuseum.ch

Translation: Translation agency JUNIQUE

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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