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Port authority building (manor house of Prądzyński), Augustów
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Port authority building (manor house of Prądzyński)



A building with a significant historical value. The Port Administration Building is one of the few structures in the entire province which have been reconstructed in adherence to stringent conservation principles. The building, often erroneously referred to as the Prądzyński manor house, currently serves as a museum which not only makes the history of the entire historical waterway more accessible to tourists, but is also intended to commemorate general Ignacy Prądzyński, a military engineer and participant of numerous armed conflicts, who became the main designer of the Augustów Canal in the years 1823-24 and who subsequently oversaw the performance of construction works.


The building, traditionally though incorrectly referred to as the Prądzyński manor house, was erected as an administrative building forming part of the Augustów Canal complex in 1829. From the second half of the 19th century, it served as a port administration office and then became a residential building where the supervisor and the sluice operators. In its original form, the building has survived until the 1960s. The actual house of general Ignacy Prądzyński was located on Krakowska street in Augustów (currently known as the Wojska Polskiego street), near the entrance into the town; however, the house was lost to the blaze in 1831. In 1968, the Community Museum of the Augustów Region was established in Augustów, followed by the Augustów Canal Museum, founded in 1973 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the commencement of construction works. Mr Wojciech Batura was appointed as the Museum director - a function which he performs to this very day/ In the 1970s, the Monument Conservation Workshop (PP PKZ) came up with the design for the reconstruction of the building, based on the surviving remnants thereof. In 1981, the interiors of the newly reconstructed structure began to serve as the Augustów Canal Museum. Inside, the building houses the permanent exhibition entitled “The history of the construction and use of the Augustów Canal, with emphasis on the role of general Ignacy Prądzyński”, combined with the screenings of various films pertaining to the construction of the Canal itself.


The so-called manor house is situated on 29 Listopada street, on the western side thereof, on a promontory surrounded by the waters of the Netta river from four sides - the waters which also form the port basin. The building is receded a few dozen metres away from the street and surrounded by a park; right behind the structure itself there is another building, erected for the Water Management Authority. Other structures located in its immediate vicinity include the sluice, the Bystry canal, two weirs, and the house of the sluice operator, all of them serving as parts of the Augustów water barrage.

The building, designed on a rectangular floor plan, is made of wooden logs concealed beneath layers of plaster and weatherboard cladding both inside and out. The weatherboards on its façades are positioned vertically beneath the window line, with those covering the upper parts of the walls positioned horizontally instead. The building follows a two-bay layout; an open porch covered with a gable roof projects from its front façade. The building itself features a hip roof clad with wood shingles, with eyebrow dormers breaking the monotony of the roof’s surface.

The building is accessible for visitors during the tourist season; in winter months, it can only be viewed from the outside, with the interiors accessible upon prior appointment.

compiled by Iwona Górska, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Białystok, 29-10-2014.


  • Batura W., Kanał Augustowski, arcydzieło rąk ludzkich i natury, Toruń 2000, s. 67, il. s. 41.
  • Batura W., Augustów, miasto królewskie, Augustów 2003, s. 27, il. s. 24, 28.
  • Szlaszyński J., MakowskiA., Augustów. Monografia historyczna, Augustów 2007, s. 183, 768-9.

General information

  • Type: public building
  • Chronology: 1829 r.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: 29 Listopada 5a, Augustów
  • Location: Voivodeship podlaskie, district augustowski, commune Augustów (gm. miejska)
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland


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