The Region of National Remembrance inside the Westpomeranian Region includes towns and villages important for the history of the Polish Army. Among these are:
c) Stare Łysogórki,
f) Osinów Dolny.
The above-mentioned places witnessed two battles from different epochs: the Mieszko I victory at Cedynia, in 972, and the crossing of the Oder River on the 16th of April 1945, by the First Polish Army.
The memory of these heroic events is safeguarded by the monuments, military cemeteries and little museums characteristic of the tourist landscape of the Oder River Region. It is worthwhile seeing these places in order to learn more about the culture and nature of this unique area of the Westpomeranian Region. What is more, doing so is truly a real regional education and a patriotic lesson.
Places worth visiting include:
Siekierki – the Sappers’ Monument
On the 14th – 20th of April 1945, at the place where the present monument has been erected, the soldiers of the Tadeusz Kościuszko 1st Sapper Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, 8th Sapper Battalion and 1st Sapper Brigade organised the crossing of the Oder River in the march to Berlin.
The Polish Mothers’ Monument in Osinów Dolny
The annual celebrations of the Oder River crossing in 1945, in Osinów Dolny (the Cedynia municipality) begin with the placing of flowers at the Polish Mothers’ Monument, commemorating the 1st Independent Mortar Brigade, which took part in the heavy fighting for the elimination of the last German bridgehead on the eastern bank of the Oder River.
Siekierki Cemetery of the First Polish Army Soldiers in Stare Łysogórki
Siekierki Cemetery of the First Polish Army Soldiers in Stare Łysogórki (the Mieszkowice municipality) was developed right after the end of World War II. Resting here are 1973 soldiers who fell during the river passage, as do those who died in the battles for Berlin in 1945. Some 1200 symbolic crosses have been placed upon the collective graves, as well as an 18 m granite obelisk carved by Sławomir Lewiński, unveiled in 1961. This monument is decorated with two Grunwald swords, with the figure of a mother with a child in her arms, as well as a sail symbolising the river crossing.
Souvenir Museum of the First Polish Army in Stare Łysogórki
The Museum of the 1st Polish Army can be found in Stare Łysogórki (the Mieszkowice municipality) near the Siekierki Cemetery. Its exhibits are connected with the Oder River crossing events of 1945. In front of the museum, the largest exhibit item has been placed – a tank, which had fought its way 1290 km from Żytomierz, through Warsaw, Kołobrzeg, Gozdowice and into Łeba.
in the summer season: 10.00 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.
in the winter season (organised groups) tel. +48 91 / 414 52 64 (Municipal Services Department in Mieszkowice).
At Gozdowice (the Mieszkowice municipality), the Oder River crossing took place from the 14th to the 20th of April 1945. The battle was fought by the Polish Army forces preparing for the assault on Berlin. The Sapper’s Monument is located here – unveiled in 1952, rebuilt in 1972. There is also a Museum of Engineering Armies of the First Polish Army, located in the building, which, during the Oder River crossing in 1945, was the command post for this battle, and for the commander of the 6th Pontoon and Bridge Battalion. The museum holds exhibits and models of the bridge train, as well as the „Stone Glory Wall” – with a map of Poland on it. The commemorative board was dedicated to the soldiers of the First Polish Army.
in summer season (except Mondays): 10.00 a.m. – 4.00. p.m.
in winter season (organised groups) tel. +48 91 / 414 52 64 (Municipal Services Department in Mieszkowice).
Boundary post in Czelin
The obelisk in Czelin (the Mieszkowice municipality) symbolises the first landmark set on the Oder River bank (on 27 February 1945) by the soldiers of the 6 Independent Pontoon and Bridge Battalion. That year, a foundation act was signed, containing the following statement: „Our division, as the first division of the Polish Army which had reached the western frontier of the Republic of Poland, placed this boundary post for eternal commemoration, on the old Polish Oder River. To commemorate this historic moment, for which we have striven so long, we formally put our signatures…”. This was placed in a bottle, corked up, sealed with tar, tied to the post, and sunk into the ground. The replacement obelisk of the first boundary post was unveiled on 9 October 1968. The historic post of February 1945, together with the original foundation act, is located in the Museum of the Polish Army in Warsaw, and copies of this document can be found in the Souvenir Museum of the 1st Polish Army, by the Military Cemetery in Stare Łysogórki, and in the Military Museum in Wrocław.