A hero of the struggle for freedom of two nations, Polish and American, a general and a hero of the war for independence of the USA. Called „the father of the American cavalry”. In 1929, the U.S. Senate established the “General Pulaski Memorial Day” on October 11.
Casimir Pulaski was born, most surely, on 6 March 1745 in Warsaw. He grew up in the family goods of Winiary on Pilica river near Warka. A local tradition says that he took his first studies in the parish school in Warka. He continued his education at the theatine priests’ Warsaw School in Warsaw. He received a court etiquette lesson at the court of Prince Kurland Karol in Mitawa, where he was a page. His parents, Józef and Marianna from Zieliński family, took care of the patriotic upbringing of the future Hero of Two Nations. His father, a landowner, the Warka district governor, but above all a recognized lawyer and an active participant of many parliamentary debates, involved in the activities of the anti-Russian opposition in the 18th-century Republic of Poland, introduced him into the world of politics. Undoubtedly, his father’s influence prompted Casimir Pulaski and his brothers to participate in the Bar Confederation (1768-1772) that was created by their paterfamilias among others.
Young Pulaski, although he did not have much military experience, quickly became one of the most famous commanders of the Confederate troops fighting for Poland’s escape from under Russian influence. He was the most famous for his effective defence of the Jasna Góra Fortress (1771). He was known for organizing daring trips to the enemy. During this period, he became a legend – songs were sung about him and poems were written. His character was immortalized on the paintings by outstanding 19th-century painters, among others: Józef Chełmoński and Juliusz Kossak.
In 1772, Casimir Pulaski left Poland and went into exile as a result of the collapse of the Bar Confederation and due to the connection of his person with the unsuccessful assassination on King Stanisław August. After several years of wanderings around Europe, in 1777, he decided to go oversea where American colonials fought against English for independence. Participation in the American Revolution could open up new opportunities for Casimir Pulaski. His rich war experience gained from Confederate fights convinced George Washington, the commander of the Continental Army, to engage brave Pulaski in the American army.
Author: Karol Kucharski, Casimir Pulaski Museum in Warka
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You can find links below to related materials in Polish Digital Equestrian Library.
Casimir Pulaski died on October 11, 1779 from the wounds suffered during the siege of Savannah. He was buried on a local plantation, as shown by archaeological research from 1996 during which a coffin with the inscription “Brigadier general Casimir Pulaski” was discovered.
Polish Digital Equestrian Library:
Click the following links to go to related materials in Polish Digital Equestrian Library (they will open in a new page):
„Kazimierz Pułaski 1745-1779” (2023) – Karol Kucharski
„Kazimierz Pułaski” (2021) – Małgorzata Król
„Wizerunek Kazimierza Pułaskiego w sztukach plastycznych. Próba bilansu” (2016) – Iwona Stefaniak
„Pułaski w amerykańskiej wojnie o niepodległość. Front północny 1777-1778” (2016) – Jolanta Daszyńska
„Muzeum im. Kazimierza Pułaskiego” (2011) – Iwona Stefaniak
„Kazimierz Pułaski w świadomości Polaków po 1989 r.” (2011) – Karol Kucharski
„Katalog – Muzeum im. Kazimierza Pułaskiego w Warce”
Kazimierz Pułaski. Bohater Polski i USA | FILM
Amerykańska rewolucja z mazurkiem w tle, czyli Będomin | FILM
Za wiarę i niepodległość – konfederacja barska | FILM