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Polish Museum & Archives in Australia Footscray, Victoria

The Polish Museum and Archives in Australia was established in 1991 as an initiative of a number of people who saw the importance of collecting and preserving historical materials that reflected the individual and community life of Polish immigrants living in Australia. The organisation was incorporated in 1992.

The aims of the organisation are to:
Collect and preserve documents, medals, objects, photographs and other materials that have historical significance to the Polish community and the wider community in Australia.
Make materials available to members of the general public and academics for research and other activities, such as exhibitions.
Work cooperatively with organisations that have similar goals.
Publish reference materials and books about the history and experiences of Polish immigration to Australia.
Seek support for the Polish Museum and Archive’s activities from mainstream, government and non-profit organisations and individuals.

Contact Information

location
Millennium House 296 Nicholson St Footscray VIC 3011 (map)
phone
+61 0403 655 044

Contact

Opening Hours

3rd Sunday of the month: 10 am to 2 pm Closed - Easter, Christmas and 1st January Or by appointment. Please note that access to the archives for research purposes is by appointment only.

Entry Fee

Gold coin donation.

Location

Millennium House 296 Nicholson St Footscray Victoria

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Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Air force association hon. member

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Air force association hon. member 1

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

air force medal card

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Historical information

this identity card proves that the air force medal was awarded to Jan Artymiuk

air force wedding

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Bal Technikow ticket

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

camera 1950s

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

1939 campaign

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

carnival ball ticket

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Carpathian Brigade badge

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

metal badge with green cypress tree being the symbol of the carpathian brigade

Historical information

military memorabilia from world War two. This brigade was initially stationed in the middle east, in particular in Syria Lebanon and eventually moved to North Africa where it took part in the battle of the Tobruk and subsequently in Italy where it took part in the battle of monte casino

Significance

one of the few remaining elements of this Brigades (in Australia.

catepillar club

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

cross of valour identity card

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

identity card made from card whites paper

Historical information

Polish Cross of valour awarded in June 1941 to Sgt Jan Artymiuk of the 300 Polish squadron based in Swinderby Lincolnshire

Significance

documents linked to a significant activist within the Polish community in Victoria who was highly awarded during world War two

Inscriptions & Markings

pprint

Diploma

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

paper

eagle from soldiers berret

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

metal alloy

Historical information

worn by soldiers within the first Polish armoured division in Europe

Significance

remaining elements of soldiers uniforms worn during world War two

ex servicemen tasmania 1948

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

female portrait

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Gold Caterpillar

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

small gold coloured caterpillar

Historical information

pin given to air men who had survived jumping out of aeroplanes during the war on a parachute. The parachutes were produced by the Caterpillar company and symbolically acknowledged the survivors. This particular pin was given to sergeant Jan Artymiuk

Significance

war time memorabilia and remanents of war veterans experiences

Help Poland Live collection box

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

white painted wooden collection box from 1980 with the solidarity symbol on the side'

Historical information

during 1980 when when military government was impose on Poland and the free solidarity you trade union was banned. The Australian Polish community established that help Poland live campaign where it gathered funds for humanitarian purposes. Such boxes were widespread during the collection process.

Significance

one of the very few remaining help Poland live collection boxes

Inscriptions & Markings

read solidarity logo on the front of the box coin slipped on top. Metal handle on the back

independence day coctail party invitation

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Kreisler Radio mid 1950s

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

list of members of air force association 1970

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

male porait

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Matka Boska mid 1950s - wedding gift

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

MEDal box

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Nelly Times 1949

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Nelly Times 1950

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Pennant

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Pennant of red cloth with screen printing in white, mustard yellow and black hung on copper wire with gold cord

Historical information

In 1955 the Polish Community in Chile wanted to Commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the ending of the 2nd World War but, since it was not a happy occasion, as Poland had been betrayed and placed in the Soviet sphere of influence, they chose to create a Pennant with a plea for the Patron Icon of Eastern Poland - Our Lady of the Sharp/Morning Gate (Matka Boska Ostrobramska/Zaranna) in Vilnius (Wilno) - to give them a new Miracle on the Vistula, in reference to an epic battle which took place on 15th August 1922 on the banks of the Vistula (Wisla) River in which the Polish troops defeated the Soviet Army and turned back the march of Communism to the West. This particular Pennant was purchased by Stanislawa Zamecznik (nee Zakrzewska), while living in Chile after deportation from her birth place in Sianozatki near Bychov (Bychow) to Schweningen in Germany from which they emigrated to South America as Displaced Persons. It was brought to Australia when the Zakrzewski Family emigrated from Chile in 1956, first to Port Augusta and then subsequently to Sydney.

Significance

It is significant in that it tells the story of the aspirations of the Polish Diaspora displaced from it's Homeland in the Kresy Region and scattered throughout the World, including the Americas and Australia.

Inscriptions & Markings

Front: Polish inscription "KROLOWO POLSKI / BLAGAMY CIE O NOWY / CUD NAD WISLA / SANTIAGO DE CHILE / 15.VIII.1955" Back: Spanish inscription "LA CASA DE BANDERIN AHUMADA 61"

Persian jewelry box from Istfahan

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

Polish CHRISTMAS pageant in Sydney

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray

photograph

Historical information

demonstration of Polish community activityIn Sydney during their fledgeling stage immediately after world War two

Significance

photograph of the Kondratowicz family in the Sydney area. One of the very few available photographs of the beginnings of the Polish community in Sydney. Photographic document showing interaction with local clergy.

polonia

Polish Museum & Archives in Australia, Footscray