Greenpoint, October, 2015

Friday, May 6, 2011


Tadeusz Kosciuszko, as every schoolchild* knows, was a Polish soldier who fought with the Continental Army in the American Revolution. As an engineer, he planned the defense of Saratoga--a battle widely thought to be a turning point in the war. He designed the fortifications at West Point, which, after the war, would become and remain the Army's military academy. He left the newly founded United States to take part in a failed uprising against Russia and Prussia, the reigning powers in Poland's "Second Partition." In his will, Kosciuszko left his property to his friend Thomas Jefferson so that Jefferson would use the money to purchase the freedom of his own slaves. Sadly, I don't believe Jefferson did--correct me if I'm wrong.

The Kosciuszko Bridge opened in 1939, a momentous year for Poland (and the world) and one that would witness the suspension of Poland's autonomy as a nation for decades to come. The sculpture of Kosciuszko is found on Wawel Hill in Krakow.

(*Every Polish schoolchild, that is.)

1 comment:

  1. Surely there must be a Polish poet who captures the spirit of the BQE...