Palace complex, Moja Wola
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The palace complex in Moja Wola, situated among former forests near Myślibórz, on the south-western boundary of the Ostrowski District, is unique not only on a national scale. The hunting palace was built in the mid-19th century. It has a wooden-frame structure, with walls covered with weatherboards and patches of cork oak bark, with the exception of the tower, which is made of brick. In 1885 and in the years 1902-1903, it was extended and converted into a residence. A landscape park was established around the palace. Additionally, a stable, a carriage house, and a residential outbuilding were constructed. The palace has retained its original form from the time when it was created. Its wide eaves and the decorative wooden slats below them, its verandas enclosed with open balustrades, and the structures framing its balconies and terraces, constructed of peeled branches, give it unique architectural beauty.

History

In the 13th century, the lands of the present Sośnie Commune belonged to the bishops of Wrocław. In 1323, they became part of the Międzybórz estate. In 1599, Andrzej Leszczyński of the Wieniawa coat of arms sold the lands to Karol, Duke of Ziębice and Oleśnica. In 1792, the estate became the property of the dukes of Brunswick. In the 1st quarter of the 19th century, a ducal forestry division was established in the forests of Międzybórz. In the years 1829-1830, Wilhelm, Duke of Brunswick and Oleśnica, established an iron foundry near the forestry division and Sośnie. In 1852, the forest residence Moja Wola was built. Following the death of Wilhelm in 1884, the estate became the property of Albert, King of Saxony, and the following year — of Baron Richard von Buddenbrock. In 1886, part of the Międzybórz estate, along with Moja Wola and Sośnie, was purchased by Daniel Von Diergardt, who established a separate Moja Wola estate. In 1909, the estate was enlarged, and in 1911, it became the property of the widow Agnes von Diergardt née Klitzing. In 1941, it was inherited by Brygida von Klitzing, Baroness von Romberg. An important and noteworthy piece of information is that a number of fascist organisations operated in Moja Wola under the direction of her husband Gissbert, and during the German occupation of Poland, some of the palace outbuildings were used as a prisoner-of-war camp. At the time of its establishment, the estate of Moja Wola covered an area of 5400 ha. In 1926, it had an area of 5842 ha, of which 4900 ha were forests. In 1936, 100 ha of the estate lands was subdivided into parcels. The designer of the palace in Moja Wola was the Polish architect Karłowski. In 1895, the building was enlarged with a south-western extension. In the years 1902-1903, a five-storeyed tower made of brick, featuring an observation deck, was built onto the wooden-frame main body. In the 1850s/1860s, the palace surroundings were shaped: an 11ha landscape park and a 400 ha hunting park were established. In the years 1948-1950, a Forestry Worker Training Centre operated in Moja Wola. The Bolesław Bierut Forestry Vocational School was established here in the years 1950-1952. It was the first forestry vocational school for girls in history. The vocational school operated in the palace until 1975, when it was moved to Stary Sącz. The Palace remained the property of the State Forests until 1992; then, it was handed over to the commune, and subsequently — sold to a private person, who does not use the building.

Description

The palace and park complex Moja Wola is situated 2 km to the west of the village of Sośnie, along the boundary of a vast forest complex, on both sides of the Młyńska Woda River [Mill Water]. The residential complex comprises two parts: the residential part with an adjacent farmyard and an estate management and forest supervision complex located on the other side of the river. The residential part, which is listed in the register of monuments and which occupies the north-eastern section of the complex, comprises the palace, surrounded by the park, a former carriage horse stable, and a former carriage house; the latter are currently used as residential buildings. The old buildings are now accompanied by new garages and outbuildings, a nursery school, and a block of flats which replaced a residential outbuilding. At present, the main access path to the palace leads from the south-east gate, from an area which used to be part of the ducal forestry division and where there used to be a water mill.

The palace faces the south; its back façade faces the farm buildings and the modern structures. The palace has a floor plan in the shape of an elongated rectangle; it is made up of a number of one- or two-storeyed parts, covered with tall gable roofs. It also has cellars. On the east side, the main body of the palace is adjoined by a five-storeyed tower with an observation deck, topped with a crenellated parapet, with pinnacles at the corners. The one-storeyed annexes have roofed terraces. The north-eastern section of the building is made of brick, whereas the central and south-western sections have a post-and-beam structure with brick infill and with walls covered with weatherboards and oak bark obtained from cork oaks and indigenous oaks. The building features numerous avant-corpses and annexes, a terrace, and wooden verandas, enclosed with open balustrades, on the front side. The wall base is made of bog iron blocks. The roofs have considerably protruding eaves and are covered with slate tiles. Looking at the building, it is possible to identify four stages of its construction and extension. The central (oldest) section, having a two-bay layout with a hall running through the centre, features two avant-corpses: on the north and south sides. It is connected with the square tower. The north-eastern section contains a library and the host’s room. In addition to the cork oak covering, the façades feature woodcarving decorations at the gable level and below the eaves. The windows and the doors have wooden surrounds; most of them are rectangular in shape. Some of the rooms are embellished with ceiling paintings, others have coffered ceilings, and one room features stucco decorations. When the palace was abandoned, boards were nailed up onto the window openings in order to protect the interior. The exterior walls are penetrated by moisture and affected by mould and house borers in many places; the cork oak bark is peeling off. The interior is extremely neglected and affected by moisture. The building urgently needs an owner and full-scale renovations.

The landscape park, originally covering an area of 14 ha, provided a picturesque setting for the hunting park; it had a network of irrigation ditches connected with the Młyńska Woda River. The park trees stretch up to the post-Evangelical church next to which stands the tomb of von Diergardt. Currently, the park, polygonal in shape, has an area of approx. 11 ha. It passes into a forest on the north side; to the south-east, there are fields, which were previously used as a vegetable garden with two greenhouses, and a Scout camp. In front of the residence, there is a vast grassy meadow, already with a number of self-sown coniferous trees. Nearby the palace, there are a more modern alpine garden and a small gazebo-smokehouse with walls covered with oak bark. By the western boundary of the park are the former carriage horse stable and carriage house. The buildings now contain offices and flats. Next to them, there is a nursery school. A new block of flats was also constructed to the north-east of the palace, in the park, on a spot previously occupied by a residential outbuilding. At present, specimens of 35 species of trees and 20 species of shrubs grow in the park. The most common trees are Norway spruces, lime trees, and birches. A number of trees, including beeches and pedunculate oaks, have the status of natural monuments.

The historic monument can be visited from the outside.

compiled by Teresa Palacz, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Poznan, 30-11-2015.

Bibliography

  • Małyszko S, Majątki Wielkopolskie, t. III pow. ostrowski, Szreniawa 1996, s. 188-194.
  • Strzałko M., Pałace i dwory w dawnym woj. kaliskim, Warszawa 1994.
  • Olejniczak M., Powiat ostrowski. Przewodnik, Ostrów Wielkopolski 2007, s. 107-109

General information

  • Type: palace
  • Chronology: 1852 r.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Moja Wola
  • Location: Voivodeship wielkopolskie, district ostrowski, commune Sośnie
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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