Calendar of Independence

The centennial of the restoration of independence is an exceptional anniversary for Poles. On November 11, 1918 the Polish state returned to the map of Europe from which it was erased by three annexationist monarchies: Austria, Prussia, and Russia. For 123 years Poles did not renounce their dream of independence and waged the unprecedented struggle for freedom and preservation of their identity. Despite the loss of yet another uprising, Poles managed to protect the most precious thing, the dream of their own state. The fall of the three annexationist states and joint efforts of Poles allowed them to revive the independent Poland.

“Calendar of Independence” takes us closer to that extraordinary time of struggle which was waged not only on battlefields and in the quietness of diplomatic cabinets, but also in the everyday life of common people who manifested their belonging to Poland without thinking of persecution and tried to preserve their own culture at all cost. These efforts lasted much longer than the warfare of the First World War (1914–1918), so the calendar tells about the events starting from the beginning of the war up to 1921, when Polish borders were finalized.

In order to represent this exceptional for Poles time in its entirety, we selected 365 dates that tell about military, social, cultural or moral and ethical events and together depict the complex and eventful road to independence. These events will be linked to specific days but will not be represented in chronological order.

The “Calendar of Independence” project is a part of the celebrations of the “Centennial of the restoration of Polish independence.” It is a result of the collaboration between the Polish Institute in Kyiv and the Polish History Museum. The authors of the selection of dates, pictures and comments that accompany them are two Polish historians, Dr. Hab. Piotr Szlanta and Jan Błachnio.

DECEMBER 31, 1920


On December 31, 1920 the General Congress of the Polish Scout Association began in Warsaw. Members of the scout organization which was created in the beginning of November of 1918 in Lublin approved the texts of the Law and Oath of a Scout...

DECEMBER 30, 1919


On December 30, 1919, in view of the growing Bolshevik threat, the Latvian government signed an agreement with the Polish authorities about the military cooperation against the common enemy. The sides agreed on conducting military action in the...

DECEMBER 29, 1918


On December 29, 1918 a sudden mass Communist demonstration took place in Warsaw. Its main cause was the internment by the Polish authorities of the Soviet delegation which came to Poland without permission. The military personnel who took...

DECEMBER 28, 1918


On December 28, 1918 Communists tried to incite the garrison of Zamość to revolt against the government. Their attempts to take over the power were unsuccessful. In two days two infantry companies were brought from Lublin by trains. They...

DECEMBER 27, 1918


On December 27, 1918 city residents gathered in front of the “Bazar” hotel in Poznań, where Ignacy Jan Paderewski stayed, in order to show their support to the composer and politician. Polish flags were hanged out on Polish buildings....

DECEMBER 26, 1918


Late in the evening of December 26, 1918 Ignacy Jan Paderewski arrived to Poznań. German authorities watched with uneasiness upon the arrival of this outstanding pianist, representative of the National Committee of Poland and future Prime...

DECEMBER 25, 1916


On December 25, 1916, in his daily order for the Russian Army, its commander-in-chief Czar Nicholas II mentioned the restoration of the free Poland which consisted of three previously divided parts as one of Russia’s military goals. Czar’s...

DECEMBER 24, 1914


On December 24, 1914 began the battle of Łowczówek which is situated to the south of Tarnów. Units of the Polish Legions were urgently recalled from the Nowy Sącz in order to strengthen the broken front line. Without Józef Piłsudski who was...

DECEMBER 23, 1920


On December 23, 1920 the Vistula River Flotilla, one of the two Polish military flotillas, was formed. It was formed from the vessels left by Germans, which were motor boats armed with machine guns. In the beginning the main task of the...

DECEMBER 22, 1919


On December 22, 1919, because of the failure of the Polish-Soviet negotiations, the Soviet government sent an offer to make peace directly to the Polish nation. However, it was responded to by the Polish government. The exchange of messages...

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