Donors of the Polish Museum in Rapperswil

Count Władysław Broël-Plater, the founder of the Polish Museum, had in mind creating a center, which would bring together the representatives of the Polish exile. Thanks to numerous donations of artworks, heirlooms, militaria, archives and books the Museum´s collection, meager at first, grew up, soon occupying the whole castle. However Plater was not the only one who purchased the exhibits. Many of them were gifted by the Polish emigrants. Among those mostly merited to the expansion of the museum were Henryk Bukowski (1839 – 1900), an insurgent of 1863, later antique dealer and art connoisseur settled in Sweden, devoted to finding and purchasing the Polish historical relics scattered all over the world. Plater however, managed to gain the legacy and book collections of Joachim Lelewel, Leonard Chodźko and Ludwik Mierosławski, all deceased in exile.

After the Polish state was reborn and regained its independence, according to Plater´s last will Rapperswil´s collections were transported in 1927 to the homeland on a special train. Unfortunately during the World War II they were almost completely annihilated. The reminiscence of the collections can be still found in the National Museum, in the Museum of the Polish Army, in the Literature Museum and in the Royal Castle in Warsaw. The collections of the second Museum presented in 1936 – 1952 were sent back to the country as well. Two years later a Swiss-Polish Society of the Museum´s Friends was founded in Rapperswil. Thanks to the generosity of the Polish emigrants the present collection was created. It gives a testimony of the engagement and patriotism of the Polish exile. Julian Godlewski, Adam Heymowski, Count Artur Tarnowski, Jan Nowak-Jeziorański, Iza Landsberger – Poznańska and Roman Umiastowski are the most merited donors to the Polish Museum.

Julian Godlewski (1903-1982)

Julian Godlewski, a Doctor of Juridical Science at the University of Jan Kazimierz was born in Lvov. After the war he settled down in Switzerland. As a prominent expert on industrial law he held a high position at the Thyssen Steel Concern. He accumulated a capital big enough to be able to purchase Polish historical monuments scattered all over the world. Some of the acquisitions were sent to Poland (Wawel, the Museum of the Polish Army in Poznan, the National Museum in Warsaw, the Royal Castle), others found their place at the Polish Museum in Rapperswil, revived thanks to Godlewski´s attempts. The collection was enriched with oil paintings of Józef Brandt, Józef Chełmoński, Alfred Wierusz – Kowalski, Iwan Trusz, watercolors of Julian Fałat, pastels of Leon Wyczółkowski, works of Jerzy Kossak, Artur Nikutowski,  Jacek Malczewski, Józef Czapski and Piotr Michałowski. Julian Godlewski was also a cofounder of the LIBERTAS foundation.

Iza Poznańska de Landsberger (1901–1978)

The art works belonging to the Silberstein – Poznański family were gifted to the Museum as a legacy of Iza Poznańska Landsberger (1901 – 1978), a resident of Geneva, one of the daughters of Maurycy and Sara. Her last will of 1983 indicated fifteen paintings, one sculpture, a Goblin tapestry as well as several objects of Jewish religious cult as a donation to the Polish Museum. In the Art Room of XIX/XX century works we can find a bust of Sara Silberstein Poznańska, sculptured in white marble by Henryk Glincenstein, the Goblin tapestry with six scenes from the family history, five watercolors of Julian Cegliński depicting views of Kazimierz, paintings of Ludwik Gędłko, Józef Brandt and Józef Chełmoński.

Count Artur Tarnowski (1903-1984)

Born in March 1903 in the Tarnowski Palace in Tarnobrzeg, died in December 1984 in Montreal, Artur Tarnowski was a Polish landowner, a farmer, a political activist and a Member of Parliament of the II Republic of Poland. During the World War II count Artur Tarnowski was forced to leave Poland and in 1946 he and his family settled down in Montreal, Canada. In 1978 count Artur Tarnowski gifted 108 miniature paintings to the Polish Museum. The collection of miniatures he donated is one of the most interesting Polish miniature collections and consists of works of Wincenty Lesseur and his apprentice Waleria Tarnowska.

Jan Nowak-Jeziorański (1914-2005)

Jan Nowak-Jeziorański was a Polish journalist, writer, politician and a social worker. He served during the World War II as one of the most notable resistance fighters of the Home Army. He is best remembered for his work as an emissary shuttling between the commanders of the Home Army and the Polish Government in Exile in London and other Allied governments which gained him the nickname “Courier from Warsaw”, and for his participation in the Warsaw Uprising. After the war he worked as the head of the Polish section of Radio Free Europe, and later as a security advisor to the US presidents Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter. His collection, dedicated to the military and post-military activities of the ´Warsaw courier´ holds works of art, prints, watercolors, former arms, maps and royal letters. The most valuable pieces are undoubtedly: a set of Norblin´s works on Polish attire from 1817 and lithographs depicting the Polish army (works of Teofil Mielcarzewicz and Antoni Simon), published in the 30s, Carl Heideloff XVIII’s prints presenting views of Warsaw and a map of the Kingdom of Poland, comprised of 25 sheets, edited by Philip von Pfau in 1770 – 1974 and marking out the borders of the III Partition of Poland.

Roman Umiastowski ps. “Bolesław Żarnowiecki” (1893-1982)

Born in January of 1893 in Warsaw, Roman Umiastowski pseudonym “Bolesław Żarnowiecki” was a military historian as well as a colonel of the infantry unit of the Polish Army. He died in London in December of 1982.

Donor of a collection of over 500 old prints mainly created in XVII, XVIII and XIX century: architectural landscapes, city views, portraits of kings, magnates, generals and national heroes. Umiastowski also donated maps and antique prints collection.

Adam Heymowski, coat of arm: Samson (1926-1995)

Born in 1926 in Poznań, Adam Heymowski was a Polish heraldry expert, librarian, sociologist and the director if the Royal Library in Stockholm. Throughout his life he issued many scientific publications and designed coats of arms. He donated the Museum with a prints collection dedicated to the insurgents of the November Uprising, containing portraits of the participants.

Romer’s family from Cytowniany

The Romers’ Parlour was created in the Polish Museum on Andrzej Romer’s initiative. Apart from the book collection, family albums and mementos it displays paintings of Zofia Dembowska – Romer. Born on 16th February in Dorpat she was a painter of a Polish origin. In 1911 she married Eugeniusz Romer (1871 – 1943), an owner of a health resort in Cytowiany, Lithuania. Her paintings can be found in Lithuanian museums and in the National Museum in Warsaw. The works she created in Canada belong to many private collectors. In 1993 an art gallery displaying her paintings was presented in Warsaw.

Andrzej Romer

Andrzej Romer, the youngest son of Eugeniusz Romer and Zofia Dembowska was born in 1921 in Cytowiany. Associated with the underground resistance movement he worked in the intelligence unit. In 1946 – 48 he was a personal secretary of Józef Rettinger in London. In 1948 Andrzej Romer immigrated to the USA. In Ann Arbor he obtained a Master title and during the next fourteen years worked together with Tadeusz Sendzimir – a great constructor and inventor. Later on his career directed him to work in Japan and France. In 1968 however he came back to the University and passed all the doctorate exams at the International Relations and Economy Faculty. He soon became a representative of the Textron concern and moved to Belgium. He negotiated big contracts in Portugal, Germany, Hungary and Poland. Andrzej Romer has lived in Brussels for many years now. He published numerous articles in the French ‘Culture’ and ‘Historical Journals’ concerning the Polish – Lithuanian relations. He is also one of the authors of a discourse on the Polish – Japanese relations and the last of the Romers, who speaks Lithuanian fluently. His donations to the Museum were the Patek watches and a collection of snuffboxes, the Library was gifted with numerous books and family documents.

Czesław Marek (1891-1985)

Born on 16th September 1891 in Przemyśl he was a Polish composer, pianist and music teacher. In January 1915 Marek immigrated to Zurich, Switzerland, where he made friends with Busoni. In 1916 – 1919 he taught a piano class in the José Berr Conservatory. In 1932 he assumed Swiss nationality. He died in Zurich in 1985 at the age of 94. After his death the interest in his music increased, most of the works were released in the 90´s.

Czesław Marek donated Jan Ignacy Paderewski’s mementos.

Kazimierz Bartkowiak

Born in 1904 in Lwówek, Wielkopolska he was a graduate of the Poznan Agriculture Academy. Before the World War II Kazimierz Bartkowiak worked for The Department of Agriculture in Warsaw and just before the outbreak of the war he was delegated on the behalf of the Ministry do the USA. In 1939 he came to Fribourg, Switzerland, where in 1946 he defended his Ph.D thesis: `Die Poduktions- und Absatzverhältnisse der Kernobst mit spezieller Berücksichtigung der Schweiz`. Throughout many years he was an expert on agricultural industry of backward countries on behalf of the ONZ. He lived in Carabietta in the canton of Tessin. Kazimierz Bartkowiak always supported the Polish organizations; he was especially fond of the Polish Museum, where according to his last will a scholarship fund of his name was supposed to come into being. Unfortunately his wish has not been accomplished. Kazimierz Bartkowiak died on 23rd of September 1996 in Lugano. The Museum received only a renaissance chest.

Donors of the Polish Museum

Anderes Bernhard, Dr., Rapperswil
Joerg Aschwanden, Rapperswil
Bartkowiak Kazimierz, Dr., Carabietta
Biźnia Konstanty, Dr., Winterthur
Blum Aleksander, Prof. Dr., London
Bocheński Józef Maria, Prof. Dr., Fribourg
Bronarski Alfons, Prof. Dr., Fribourg
Bulkiewicz Adolf Jan, Oberwiterthur
Bürgisser-Krieger Arthur, Bem
Chankowski Stanisław. Dr. Warszawa
Chojnacki Władysław, Prof. Dr., Warszawa
CzarnockiKazimierz, Bruxelles
Colombo Margrit, Rapperswil
Czarnocka-Hempel Halina, Bruxelles
Domeisen-KühneWalter sen., Rapperswil
Estreicher RoqozińskaMaria, Genf
Fonaro Eduard, Rapperswil
Frania Jan, Pfarrer, RektorderKPM Marly
Giera Zbigniew, Toronto
Gierszewski Roman, Zürich
Gierszewska Kryzan Bożysława, Zürich
Gieysztor Aleksander, Prof. Dr., Warszawa
Gnoiński Piotr Zbigniew, Winterthur
Godlewski Julian, Dr. Lugano
Godłowski Władysław, Oberst, Chicago
Gołaś Antoni, Dr., Gais
Gołubiec Opońcen Jadwiga, Seattle
Górski Krzysztof, Genf
Grocholski Graf Kazimierz, London/Zollikon
Grocholska/Müller/SvertschkovAnna, Zollikon
Laboratoire Curie, Section de Physique et Chimie, Paryż
Lambert Mary, Veronica, Nicholas, Sydney
Langman Jerzy, Ksiądz prof.
Lubomirska-Aksamit Gabriela, Kraków
Minkowska-FuxIrena, Zürich
Miż Miszyn Mamert, München
Nehring Sylwia, Paris
Nowak Jeziorański Jan Zdzisław, München
Nowakowski Tadeusz, München
Pelc Stanisław, General, London
Pfenninger Paul, Rapperswil
Potulicki Graf Michał, Dr., Genf
Piwowarczyk Bolesław, Nyon
Plater-Zyberk Róża, Lausanne
Potocka Majerowicz Hanna, Zürich
Potuliccy hr. Karol
Pręgowski Zdzisław, Dr. h.c., Winterthur
Rakowski Janusz, Dr. Zürich
Rathgeb Hans, Rapperswil
Reiser Rottert Maria, London
Romer Andrzej, Bruksela
Robert-Tissot Fibinger Charles, Zürich
Rucki Jerzy, Dr., Luzern
Rufener Sapieha Elżbieta
Schmid Konrad, Rapperswil
Sekcja Polskiej Rozgłośni Radia Wolna Europa
Solka Andrzej, Zürich
Starzyński Wojciech, Dr., Frauenfeld
Stefaniak Wiktor, Dr., Zürich
Stefańczyk Helena, London
Skrodzki Jerzy, Montreal
Sträter Rudolf, Bonn
Szajdzicki Adam, Fliegermajor, Zürich
Szmitkowski Tadeusz, Genf
Sztachelski Tadeusz, Dr., Visp/Lugano
Świszczowska-Pelc Barbara, London
Tarnowski Artur, Montreal
Tornare Bruśnioka Krystyna, Zürich
Turczyńska Grochowalska Janina, Lausanne
Umiastowska Aldridge Joanna, London
Umiastowski Roman, Oberst, London
Veillard-Cybulska Henryka, Prof. Dr., Lausanne
Vincenz Kazimierz, Zuchwil
Weynerowska “Kali” Hanna, California, USA
Węcławowicz Andrzej, Stockholm
Węcławowicz Irena, Stockholm
Wojnarski Tadeusz, Zürich
Wyderko Mieczysław, Dr., Winterthur
Zabłocki Tadeusz