Saturday, 19 September 2015

Polish Museum in Rapperswil

As you might have noticed, the human family in which I live is Polish. Polish people are amazing - you can get them out of Poland but you cannot get Poland out of them. As a result, when we came to swim a bit in the Zurich Lake, the first thing that they wanted to visit was the Polish Museum in Rapperswil.

The Museum is located in the Rapperswil castle.

It was created in 1870 when the Poland did not exist - it was invaded and divided between its neighbours, Russia, Prussia and Austria. Władysław Plater has then leased the Rapperswil castle to create there a safe place for some of the cultural treasures being part of the Polish national heritage. It was also a refuge for Polish patriots, both soldiers and civilians, fighting for its freedom. Many famous Polish people have spent some time living and working here, for example the famous writer Stefan Żeromski.

Let's enter inside the castle.

In the courtyard you will find a nice restaurant.

The museum is located on the second floor. Next to the entrance you can see the coats of arms of former Polish regions (voivodships).

Most of the books and other historical artefacts were moved back to Poland in 1927. Unfortunately, in1944 they were burnt by German nazis together with other valuable items from Polish national heritage. Today, you just see a few items, like sabres from the times of king John III Sobieski.

 You can also have a look at a few really old books, dating back to sixteenth century.

Since Rapperswil was the beating heart of Poland in days when Polish patriots were not safe in their homeland, you can see here numerous exhibitions devoted to Poles that had to flee their country in different periods. In 1830, after the November Uprising ...

... in 1940 during World War II ...

... and in 1945, when the communists took over Poland.

Recently, Poland has celebrated 25 years of (full and effective) freedom. As a result, the Rapperswil museum is slowly getting populated also with exhibitions of modern Polish art.

Before we leave the museum, I propose that we go up to the tower. It may look tough, but trust me, it is worth it.

From the top of the tower we can see a fantastic panorama of the town ...

... and the Alps in the background.

We horses live from one day to another. I am always impressed by the human ability to keep and celebrate memories. I truely recommend you to pay a visit to the Rapperswil museum. Even if you do not live with a bunch of Polish people.

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