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A jacket from the formal attire of the interwar period belonged to a member of the Sokół (Falcon) Gymnastic Society. The double-breasted jacket, made of green cloth, which got faded in the course of time, has five original buttons, but, unfortunately, it is not complete. It constitutes only one element of a full uniform. It was donated to the museum by a private person. The outfit evokes the history of the Wadowice Falcon’s Nest.

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A jacket from the formal attire of the interwar period belonged to a member of the Sokół (Falcon) Gymnastic Society. The double-breasted jacket, made of green cloth, which got faded in the course of time, has five original buttons, but, unfortunately, it is not complete. It constitutes only one element of a full uniform. It was donated to the museum by a private person. The outfit evokes the history of the Wadowice Falcon’s Nest.
The Falcon Gymnastic Society (TG) organisation was created in 1867 in Lviv with its statutory goals to promote fitness and intellectual agility in the atmosphere of patriotism, democratism and social solidarity as well as in the spirit of profound religiousness. The beginning of the Falcon movement in Wadowice dates back to 1887; merely two years later, in 1889, an impressive Falcon unit was built in the town. In those days it was the westmost Falcon nest in Galicia, the thirteenth one since “Mother-Falcon” had been established in Lviv. In 1892 a banner of the Wadowice Falcon was consecrated. The organisation had an elitist character. It was active until 1949 when it was regarded as an opposition to the communist regime. Forced communalisation of the organisation’s property was carried out. The organisation was revived in 1990.
The attire was an element which identified a member of the Falcon organisation. In 1885 a detailed description with illustrations of the Falcon uniform was shown in the magazine Przewodnik Gimnastyczny (Gym Guide). It consisted of a Bathory’s flat hat decorated with a feather (batorówka), a sheepskin Kościuszko jacket (czamara), an amaranth shirt, black lightweight top boots.
The Falcon uniform is presented at the “Wadowice of Karol Wojtyła” exhibition in the room dedicated to the Society. It constitutes one of the elements evoking the history of the Wadowice Falcon’s Nest. Apart from the jacket one can also see, among others, old photographs depicting falcon units, diplomas and medals awarded for sporting achievements.
Many citizens of the town were engaged in the activity of the Falcon organisation which was crucial to the sporting life of Wadowice. The cultural life of Wadowice in the pre-war period was concentrated in the Falcon unit. The biggest theatre in town was housed here, staging amateur theatrical plays. Organised usually on the second day of the Whitsun, Falcon May-day events (so-called majówki) were very popular. They consisted of carrying out a relay race with a midsummer fire (sobótka), lit in Zawadka at the foot of the Łysa Góra Mountain, to the centre of Wadowice and the Falcon unit. Afterwards, entertaining sport shows were held.
In 1997 Pope John Paul II became an honorary member of the Falcon organisation.
The Falcon Gymnastic Society cherished the pre-war tradition of gathering the society in different organisations, a sports one as well.

Elaborated by City Museum in Wadowice, © all rights reserved

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Uniform of the “Sokół (“Falcon”) Gymnastic Society

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