Anglo Polish Society talk about Tadeusz Kościuszko

Date: 15-06-2024 Hour: 15:00

Event place: M Shed, Bristol

Come to the Anglo Polish Society talk to find out more about Andrzej Tadeusz Kościuszko, M Shed at 3pm on Saturday 15 June. 

Andrzej Tadeusz Bonawentura Kościuszko was born in February 1746 and died in October 1817. Kościuszko was a Polish military architect, statesman, liberationist and military leader who achieved fame across two continents.

Kościuszko fought in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth’s struggles against Russia and Prussia, and on the U.S. side in the American Revolutionary War, during which time he also designed state-of-the-art fortifications at West Point and achieved the status of Brigadier General.  

Gravely wounded after his failed uprising against Russian occupation, Kościuszko visited Bristol in 1797, staying at the White Lion Inn on Broad Street on his way back to America. Such was his hero status as a freedom fighter and abolitionist that local dignitaries gave him a ‘plate’ of 100 Guineas, and he presented his gold and diamond ring to the city (now viewable at Bristol Museum). 

During his time in Bristol, he was applauded by the Dissenters, Whigs, Quakers, Methodists, Romantics and radical doctors; all those who wanted an end to the slave trade and greater rights for the common people. Kościuszko was dismayed to see Founding Father friends like Jefferson and Washington own slaves.  

During the American and Polish revolutions, Kościuszko had employed free Black men as his aides-de-camp: Agrippa Hull in America, and Jean Lapierre in Poland. When he returned to Europe in May 1798, hoping to organise another uprising to liberate Poland, Kościuszko made a will in which he left his American assets to purchase freedom and provide education for Jefferson’s enslaved Africans. Sadly, this was never carried out, and he was never to see his homeland Poland again.  

On the 11 June 2024 the Anglo Polish Society is placing a plaque on Broad Street in the white and red colours of the Polish flag, marking the building where Andrzej Tadeusz Bonawentura Kościuszko had stayed. 

WHEN: Saturday, 15 June 2024, 3pm – 4.30pm

WHERE: M Shed, Princes Wharf, Wapping Rd, Bristol BS1 4RN

TICKETS:  free of charge but must be reserved here.

From the editor: From Saturday 8 June to Sunday 23 June, the Anglo Polish Society Bristol and the South West is organising an exhibition in the exhibition space on the first floor of Bristol Central Library, about Tadeusz Kościuszko’s visit to Bristol. More info here.



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