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“Tank” (“Today Is My Birthday”, 1990)

Presented object was made for the play Today is my birthday Cricot 2 Theater, over which the artist worked from October 1989 to early December 1990. Tadeusz Kantor died after one of the last rehearsals, 8 of December 1990 year. The premiere took place shortly afterwards, in January 1991 at the Théâtre Garonne in Toulouse, then the play was shown in 22 cities around the world until June 1992.

Old print. Marcin Kromer’s work, “De origine et rebus gestis polonorum libri XXX” (with Grodecki’s map)

The presented old print is the most complete issue of one of the best known works by Marcin Cromer with the Polish title: O pochodzeniu i czynach Polaków ksiąg trzydzieści [About origins and deeds of Poles in thirty books] (the first Polish translation of the work written in Latin came out in 1611).

Badge of a pilot of the Naval Air Squadron

Normal 0 21 false false false PL X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:Standardowy; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"; border:none;} This is a first-class marine pilot badge, issued by order 13/33, in force in 1933–39. Probably, it was worn by Capt. Roman Borowiec, pilot of the CANT Z.506 Air one aeroplane, sunk in Lake Ślemień (a badge was picked up there along with other remains of the plane).

Painting “Portrait of Seweryn Józef Rzewuski”

The portrait depicts Seweryn Jan Rzewuski of the Krzywda coat of arms, a son of Stanisław Mateusz, the Grand Crown Hetman, an older brother of Hetman Wacław Rzewuski, and of Ludwika née Kunicka.

Virtuti Militari Cross of General Benedykt Kołyszko

One of a few preserved specimens from 1792. An even-armed cross with slightly arched arm edges. On the obverse the arms are covered with black enamel with a golden rim left on the edges. The arms feature the order’s motto of VIR/ TUTI/ MILI/ TARI. At the intersection of the cross’s arms there is a round central shield covered with green-enamelled laurel leaves on the rim. In the central field there is an enamelled image of a white eagle with a golden crown, with a sceptre in its beak and an orb in its claws.

Commemorative box with coins and a banknote from the times of the November Uprising of 1831

At the time of the November Uprising, which broke out in Warsaw in 1830 to oppose Tsarist Russia, the National Government ordered a series of new coins to be made including a 3 copper groschen, a 10 coin groschen, silver two- and five-zloty coins and gold Dutch ducats.

Commemorative spade

Among the four mounds in Krakow, the Piłsudski Mound is the youngest and the biggest. It was raised on the top of Sowiniec Hill, situated in the Wolski Forest. In 1934 the Association of Polish Legionnaires put forward the idea of raising a mound-statue of the nation’s fight for independence.

Photograph “Federation of Fighting Youth demonstration” by Stanisław Gawliński

Under the state of martial law, Nowa Huta was the largest bastion of the independent, self-governing Labour Union “Solidarity”, that was operating underground at the time. Huge demonstrations took place here, often turning into dramatic clashes with the authorities. With the passing of time, however, the activity of the underground began to diminish, and it eventually restricted its actions to publishing underground newspapers and self-help. The situation didn't change before the late 1980s, when a new generation of activists came to the fore. Its core were the young workers and students most often belonging to such organizations as the Confederation of Independent Poland, Fighting Solidarity, the Freedom and Peace Movement, and the Federation of Fighting Youth.

Painting “Portrait of General Henryk Dembiński”

The painting shows Henryk Dembiński (1791–1864), a veteran of the Napoleonic Wars, an outstanding commander and strategist in the November Uprising, and one of the leaders of the Hungarian Revolution of 1848–1849, sitting thoughtfully, in a staff tent. Under a veiled curtain, a battle scene is visible in the distance. The painting symbolically refers to the work of the master Rodakowski, Léon Cogniet (1794–1880), who — after the failure of the November Uprising — painted the picture Prague 1831, showing a fresh battlefield and an officer standing in front of it, whose attitude and facial expression were marked by determination and a desire for revenge.

Old print. Marcin Kromer’s work, “De origine et rebus gestis polonorum libri XXX”, published in Basel

Marcin Kromer’s old print, being one of the oldest book relics, is entitled De origine et rebus gestis polonorum (On the origin and deeds of Poles). The printed book by Kromer (in Latin) shows the 16th-century researcher’s state of knowledge about history and it is also an interesting source in the field of research contemporary to him on the oldest history of Poland.

Signal trumpet banner

The flame for the signal trumpet was a decorative element used during solemn speeches. A trumpeter was present in the full-time squadron of the cavalry regiment, as well as on the regular posts of infantry riflemen as well as medium machine gun and artillery units. In the field...

Urban Bell

In the upper part of the bell resonator is a date, “1382”, written in Roman numerals, which helped identify the date of the casting of the bell. It is also decorated with ornamentation. In the middle of the resonator is a frieze decorated with a curved line. Above it there are three plaques depicting the crucifixion scene placed at equal intervals.

“Danube channel — Vistula — 2”

Kraków was to become an important hub for water transport. The idea came to light in 1901, when the Vienna State Council adopted the so-called the Koerber Act (from the name of the Austrian Prime Minister Ernst von Koerber, initiator of its adoption). The venture had a huge budget (1 billion kroner); it assumed the construction of new waterways...

“Main Market Square, ceremony to celebrate Adam Mickiewicz monument re-erection”

The photograph presents an important historical moment in the history of the main market square in Kraków, because it probably shows the reinstallation of the statue of Adam Mickiewicz in the Main Square on 26 November 1955.

Cross from the collection of patriotic jewelry

The exhibit comes from a rich collection of patriotic jewellery in the Chrzanów museum. Such jewellery is often called mourning jewellery as it often came from the period of national mourning that followed on Polish territory the defeat of the January Insurrection of 1863.

Urn for the Piłsudski Mound with the ground from all the airports of the Second Republic of Poland

A large urn in the form of a cylinder, on a round flat plinth, supported on three stylised animal paws. At the edge of the urn is a crowned eagle with outspread wings. On the external wall of the urn is a map of the Second Republic of Poland on which all the airports are marked; above the map is a flying airplane, further to the right the marshal’s baton and a relevant inscription. The urn contains ground collected from 40 airports.

Fragments of the Adam Mickiewicz Monument demolished by the Germans

Three inconspicuously-looking fragments of the bronze sculpture: the head of an old man and the fragment of a hand and an arm are the elements of one of the most important 19th century monuments in Kraków — the monument commemorating the national bard, Adam Mickiewicz. The monument, erected in 1898 by the sculptor Teodor Rygier, was demolished by the German occupant in 1940 as a symbol of Polish statehood.

Photograph “John Paul II in Mistrzejowice” by Stanisław Gawliński

Jokingly, we can say that John Paul II owes his career to Nowa Huta. The troubles connected with the construction of the new church in Nowa Huta, created by the communists, had compelled Bishop Eugeniusz Baziak to take action. He appointed Karol Wojtyła, despite his young age, as his deputy.

The Polish Air Force flag

Pursuant to the Act of 22 August 1940 and the Agreement of 11 June 1940 entered into between the British and Polish governments, the British government permitted the establishment of two bomb squadrons, including a training centre, and introduced a command dualism and a right to use Polish national symbols. Polish pilots wore British uniforms featuring the Polish eagle on the cap and the inscription “Poland” on the upper part of the sleeves.

Identity card of Polish 7th Air Escadrille

This exhibit features ID card no. 84 with the legendary 7 badge. It is associated with a Fighter Squadron (the so-called Kościuszko Squadron) fighting in defence of the Polish Borderlands in 1920. This unique unit, apart from Poles, also included American volunteers. The ID card belonged to Maj. Pil. Teofil Dziama and was issued...