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PMA celebrates its 84th Birthday

PMA celebrates its 84 Birthday!

Main Hall Opening assembly

Main Hall Opening assembly

The Polish Museum of America celebrates 84 years since its opening on Jan. 12, 2021.

Ceremonially opened in 1937 at Polish Roman Catholic Union of America building HQ Milwaukee and Augusta, it was and is today the only Museum representing Polish History and Arts in the North and South American hemispheres. Conceived primarily as an Archives Center covering the uncharted plethora of Polish American history, this brainchild of M.Haiman, Polish American history pioneer and first curator grew into a professional institution filling quickly with artefacts.

Opening day drew delegates from all PRCUA office branches located across the vast USA. The freshly built Main Hall complete with spacious stage and galleries was full to the brim. Present were Joseph Kania, PRCUA President who cut the ribbons, Chicago Mayor Kelly, Polish and French diplomats and Illinois officials. The Polish Historical-Museum Society emerging one month later enabled vital fundraising. Valuables of Polish culture, history on American soil found a wonderful home at PMA. Here one can marvel an unmatched assortment of Kosciuszko personal effects. The Paderewski Room showcasing the virtuoso’s original 1917 Peace Treaty quill pen and apartment opened Nov. 3, 1941. Come along on our virtual online tour to meet Polish Painting Masters like the Kossak family, Jan Styka, Jan de Rosen Byzantine style story teller, to see sculpture from the Zakopane school to the 1 and only Szukalski. Temporary displays and permanent exhibits like the 1939 NY World Fair Polish Pavilion inebriate the proactive quality of this legendary institution. Bewitching folk costume design and colors, arrays of military uniforms, orders, weapons, rare books and letters written by Polish kings treasured in the Museum Library are just a fraction of our collection.

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