20th Century History

Poland entered the 20th century after over a 100 years of foreign rule and regained its independence at the end of World War I only to lose it again to the Nazis and then the Soviets which did not relinquish control until 1989. This gallery seeks to capture the ups and downs of the century. Some of the items found in this gallery include:

  • Flags from Haller’s Army aka the Blue Army as well as Polish Veterans’ organizations
  • 1926 Polish Mauser rifle produced at an arms factory in Warsaw
  • Diaries of Poles exiled to Kazakhstan and Siberia during World War II (one of which was published in Polish and one which was drawn, not written)
  • Newspapers from the Chicopee/Springfield area proclaiming the beginning of World War II as well as Warsaw’s heroic defense
  • Display on Wojtek the Bear, soldier of the 22nd Artillery Supply Company of the Polish II Corps, along with collar tabs (displaying the bear), map of Monte Cassino drawn by the 12th Geographic Company
  • Solidarity memorabilia, including posters, pins, stamps as well as a diary of Wiesław Olszak, imprisoned Solidarity activist and a rosary made out of bread that he made while imprisoned in Potulice