Szlakiem Habsburgów po Śląsku Cieszyńskim
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

users tour Agata Mucha

Szlakiem Habsburgów po Śląsku Cieszyńskim

7

two days

śląskie

Zespół zamkowy
Cieszyn

one hour

transport time to the next site

7 min

5 min

Post-Dominican Parish Church of Mary Magdalene
Cieszyn

30 minutes

One of the three preserved historical churches of the Dominican Order in the region, being the only material remnants of the Order’s activity in Upper Silesia from the 13th to the 19th century. Despite the contemporary modifications related to its reconstruction following a fire, the structure is a well-preserved example of a medieval Dominican church in terms of layout, shape, and size.

History

Founded by Piast dukes in 1289, the Cieszyn monastery was part of a dense network of Silesian Dominican monasteries, whose number in this region was twice as high as the number of monasteries of this type built in the 13th and 14th century in other Polish lands. In accordance with the rules of the Order, the monastery complex, whose integral part is the present Church of Mary Magdalene, was built within the city walls, nearby the contemporary market. The church, which has survived to this day, was built in c. 1300 on a cross-shaped plan consisting of one nave with a transept and an elongated chancel terminating in a semi-hexagon, originally without a tower, modelled on the Church of the Holy Cross in Wrocław. The church, intended to be used for the purposes of the monastery, also provided a burial site for the Piast dukes of Cieszyn. However, little is known about the monastery itself. Just as other, non-extant Silesian Dominican monasteries, it was a typical quadrangular structure with an inner garth and a cloister, situated to the south of the church. Over the next centuries, the church probably underwent certain alterations, which is indicated by the numerous portals from the 16th century or the Chapel of the Holy Cross founded in 1660 by Jan Fryderyk Larisch. The critical event for the appearance of the church was the huge fire of the city in 1789, in which a major part of the church was destroyed. A year later, the Cieszyn monastery was liquidated, which resulted in the dismantling of a larger part of the monastery and the transformation of the only remaining wing into a clergy house. On the initiative of Prince Albert of Saxony, Duke of Teschen, and Maria Christina, the church was reconstructed very soon according to a design by Józef Drachny. It was to become a parish church. All the surviving walls of the medieval church were used during the reconstruction. The church was rebuilt in a new, Baroque-classical form. The interior of the church was covered with new sail vaults on arches and pilasters were added to the walls. The newly-constructed west tower, whose pillars substantially shortened the interior of the nave, became the dominant feature of the structure. Moreover, the Chapel of St Melchior Grodziecki and Our Lady of Perpetual Help was built onto the south facade of the church. Around the mid-19th century, the so-called new sacristy was added to the chancel on the south side, and the flooring inside the church was replaced with the present two-coloured marble floor. In the years 1928-1934 and 1962-1967, the church underwent maintenance and restoration works. As part of the latter, Gothic wall sections and remains of traceries were revealed.

Description

The church is located in the southern part of the historic Cieszyn, within the city walls, by the present Św. Krzyża Square and Dominikański Square, which was built after the former monastery buildings were dismantled.

The church is an oriented structure, basically made of brick and having the shape of a Latin cross. It consists of a short, rectangular nave with a projecting transept terminating in a semi-hexagon and an elongated, three-bay chancel, also terminated semi-hexagonally. The compact, vertical structure of the church is covered with gable roofs of a uniform roof ridge height. A row of varied, rectangular, one- and two-storeyed annexes covered with mono-pitched roofs, including two porches with an oratory on the first floor and a two-bay sacristy, adjoin the chancel on the south side. The nave is surrounded by rows of chapels and porches on the south and north sides. Situated on the north side are the square Chapel of the Holy Cross, topped with an octagonal dome with a lantern, and the two-bay Chapel of Melchior Grodziecki, covered with a mono-pitched roof. The two-bay Chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, covered with a mono-pitched roof, and a two-storeyed porch combined with a staircase are located on the south side of the nave. The dominant feature of the church structure is a tower with a porch, situated on the west side. Rectangular in shape, it is topped with a pyramidal roof. The walls are covered with plaster. All walls except the front facade are Gothic in character and decorated with symmetrically arranged, pointed-arched window openings, as well as buttresses and profiled crowning cornices. The classical front façade has three levels. The rusticated ground floor level contains the main portal accentuated by a rectangular frame topped with an entablature. Deep in the entrance passage, there is another portal, made of stone, profiled, and crowned with a pointed arch. It dates back to the 13th-14th century. The higher level, passing into a screen wall in the higher parts, is characterised by a triaxial division determined by Tuscan pilasters supporting an entablature, with a balcony framed by Ionic columns. Above, there is the uppermost level, framed by Ionic pilasters in the corners, topped with an entablature with a pronounced cornice. The façades of particular chapels and porches are only decorated with round-arched window openings and portals crowned with triangular tympanums. The façades of the 17th-century Chapel of the Holy Cross is characterised by frame divisions and a profiled crowning cornice. The interior of the church has a layout shaped in the Middle Ages and features a consistent, classical design introduced in the late 18th century. The chancel and the nave are separated by a semi-circular rood arch. The chancel features a conch with lunettes in the apse part and a sail vault on arches, passing into Tuscan pilasters on the walls, in the two-bay part. The transept has a similar ceiling, with the apses in both semitransepts covered by tripartite vaults. In the semitransepts, there are parts of the original, roll-shaped, granite engaged columns in the Gothic style. The nave has a groin vault. Its walls are divided symmetrically by means of composite order columns supporting those sections of the entablature on which the vault arches rest. In the western part of the nave, there is a two-storeyed, three-bay music gallery resting on pillars. The Chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and the south porch have sail vaults on arches, the Chapel of St Melchior — a barrel vault with lunettes, the Chapel of the Holy Cross — with an octagonal dome, and the other rooms — with flat ceilings. There also remains of Gothic architectural details, including a stone, Early-Gothic, pointed-arched portal from the 13th/14th century, connecting the Chapel of St Melchior with the nave (visible on the chapel side), a Late-Gothic, 15th century portal with a trefoil arch, communicating the chancel with the sacristy, and a Renaissance portal from the 16th century with a profiled cornice, communicating the chancel with the sacristy. The two-coloured, marble flooring inside the church was most likely installed during the works carried out in the middle of the 19th century. The Late-Baroque and classical equipment and furnishings predominantly date back to the late 18th century and the 19th century, when the church underwent major alterations. The preserved elements include the Late-Baroque main altar from 1794, made by K. Schweigel, featuring columns, sculptures of Saints Peter and Paul, and a painting depicting Mary Magdalene washing her hands, as well as a late-classicism tabernacle from the 1st half of the 19th century. Nearby the rood arch, there is a Late-Baroque-classical pulpit with a sculpture of Moses and an angel on the sounding board, as well as a baptismal font located opposite, made in the same style, with a framed sculpture depicting the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River; both sculptures, made of stucco, are the works of F. Schubert and were completed in 1792. The most valuable element of the interior is the only surviving Gothic grave, with visible Parler influences, dated at c. 1380 and regarded as the grave of Casimir II, Przemysław Noszak or his son Przemek.

The church is open to visitors at all times except during the mass.

compiled by Agnieszka Olczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 17-09-2014.

Bibliography

  • Karta ewidencyjna zabytku architektury. Kościół parafialny p.w. św. Marii Magdaleny [w Cieszynie], opr. T. Śledzikowski, 1998, Archiwum NID.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, T. VI, woj. katowickie, z. 3: Miasto Cieszyn i powiat cieszyński, red. I. Rejduch-Samkowa, J. Samek.
  • Małachowicz E., Architektura zakonu dominikanów na Śląsku, [w:] Z dziejów sztuki śląskiej, red. Z. Świechowski, Warszawa 1978, s. 93-148.
  • Spyra J., Via sacra. Kościoły i klasztory w Cieszynie i Czeskim Cieszynie, Cieszyn 2008.
  • Zabytki Sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, red. S. Brzezicki, C. Nielsen, Warszawa 2006.

transport time to the next site

1 min

3 min

Larisch Palace, currently the Museum of Cieszyn Silesia
Cieszyn

two hours

A Neoclassical town palace, of which there are not many in the region. It has a characteristic architectural form, shaped in two stages and adjusted to the local topography, with a unique spatial arrangement in terms of the location of the former stable designed by Joseph Kornhäusel and with sophisticated painted decorations of the representative rooms. The castle is also valuable from the historical point of view, as it is related to the history of the city and Cieszyn Silesia.

History

Before the huge fire of the town in 1789, two structures existed on the land currently occupied by the palace: a two-storeyed, brick house of the Larisch family and a wooden house of the Smolański family. The destruction of both buildings during the town fire of 1789 coincided with the promotion of Count Johann Larisch von Moennich to State Marshal and President of the Land Sejm and the necessity to create a residence suitable for a high-rank official of the Vienna Court. In the years 1790-1795, the houses were replaced with a three-storeyed palace surrounded by a garden, extended in the 1830s by Count Philip Ludwig St. Genois d’Anneaucourt with a rear south wing, containing, among other things, a unique stable designed by the prominent Vienna architect Joseph Kornhäusel. In 1840, the residence became the property of Johann Deml, Mayor of Cieszyn. In 1918, the palace was purchased by the town, which in 1931 turned it into a town museum housing e.g. the museum collection of Rev. Leopold Szersznik, ethnographic collections of the Silesian Museum and the Town Museum, and private collections. In 1942, parts of the building were destroyed in a fire. Restoration works were carried out in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1990s. In 2000, maintenance works were carried out on the palace façades.

Description

The palace is situated in the eastern part of the historic Cieszyn, nearby the former town walls, where there used to be a moat, in the neighbourhood of the present Park Pokoju (Park of Peace). Its front façade faces Regera Street. It is a Baroque-Neoclassical building made of brick and stone, having a quadrangular floor plan consisting of three wings surrounding an irregular, quadrangular yard, enclosed with a blind wall on the east side. The three-storeyed wings, forming a compact structure, are covered with mansard roofs. The façades have a Neoclassical character. The representative façade facing Regera Street consists of an individuated, rusticated ground floor level with a gate opening framed by a portal with a triangular pediment, an upper part divided by pairs of vertical panels and window openings, and a crowning part in the form of an attic. The lower part of the east façade, reinforced by buttresses (being remains of the former town walls) is divided by means of string courses and window trim, just like the façades facing the yard. On the front side and in the south part of the side wing, there are two wide entrance gates leading to the yard, covered with barrel vaults with lunettes. The interiors of the wings basically consist of two suites of rooms of various sizes, usually covered by barrel and sail vaults, more rarely with cloister vaults with lunettes (on the ground floor), groin vaults, and flat ceilings (on the upper storeys). In the front wing, next to the entrance gate, there is a half-landing main staircase. In the south wing, there is a unique stable (currently a café), built on a round floor plan, two-storeyed, and divided by means of elongated, round-arched niches. It is covered with a dome with lunettes, supported by a Tuscan columns located in the centre. On the second floor of the north and south wings, there are rooms which are the most valuable from an artistic point of view, embellished with Neoclassical wall paintings dated at 1796 and the 2nd quarter of the 19th century. In the front wing, there is the former ball room, the so-called Egyptian room, whose painted decorations, made by the Cieszyn-Opava painter Jan Józef Mayer, depict Zodiac signs on the flattened cloister vault, ignudi, putto, and sphinx motifs on the walls directly below the vault, and optical-illusion landscapes framed by architectural elements dividing the walls into sections. The oriental decoration of the neighbouring Chinese study room corresponds to the wall divisions imitating panels and pilasters, framing sections and supraportes containing genre scenes and fantasy architecture images. On the ceiling, there is a painting depicting a bird-of-paradise. In the south wing, there is the so-called Roman room (a ball room), partially destroyed during World War II. On the walls, there are Romantic paintings from the 1930s depicting an Italian landscape, partially concealed by architectural divisions. In the palace yard and in the southern part of Park Pokoju, there is a lapidarium, housing e.g. the remains of portals from the houses of prominent Cieszyn townsmen, Gothic architectural details from the Church of Michael the Archangel, and a Baroque scuplture of St Anthony from the early 18th century, attributed to Antoni Stanetti.

The site is accessible. It can be visited during the opening hours of the museum.

compiled by Agnieszka Olczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 10-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Chojecka E., Gorzelik J., Kozina I., Szczypka-Gwiazda B., Sztuka Górnego Śląska od średniowiecza do końca XX wieku, Katowice 2009.
  • Iwanek W., Świecka architektura Cieszyna, [w:] Rocznik Cieszyński III, Cieszyn 1976, s. 107-123.
  • Karta ewidencyjna zabytku architektury. Dawny Pałac Larischów (obecnie Muzeum Śląska Cieszyńskiego) [w Cieszynie], opr. M. Cempla, 2001, Archiwum NID.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, T. VI, woj. katowickie, z. 3: Miasto Cieszyn i powiat cieszyński, red. I. Rejduch-Samkowa, J. Samek.
  • Zabytki Sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, red. S. Brzezicki, C. Nielsen, Warszawa 2006.

transport time to the next site

3 min

2 min

Evangelical-Augsburg Church of Grace, the so-called Church of Jesus
Cieszyn

30 minutes

The church, being one of the few historic Silesian Evangelical-Augsburg churches — the so-called churches of Grace, built after 1709 under the Treaty of Altranstädt — is a symbol of the 18th-century revival of Protestantism in Upper Silesia and in the Habsburg Monarchy. At the same time, it is the only of the four surviving churches of Grace which still functions as an Evangelical church, thus being a material testimony to the continuity of the cultural and historical identity of Cieszyn and the complex religious situation in the whole of Cieszyn Silesia. Additionally, the church is valuable from the artistic point of view due to its unaltered, original form, different from those of other churches of Grace, modelled on the Baroque-monumental mission churches adopted to the Evangelical liturgical requirements.

History

The presence of Protestantism in Cieszyn Silesia, established in the 16th century, was disrupted by the resolutions of the Peace of Westphalia of 1648, unfavourable to the Evangelical community and resulting in the introduction of Counter-Reformation measures by the Habsburgs. It was only in 1707 that Evangelical Protestants were granted the right to public worship under the Treaty of Altranstädt, in which Charles XII of Sweden made Joseph I, Holy Roman Emperor, return approx. 120 churches and grant the permission for the construction of a number of new ones to the Silesian Evangelical Protestants. As a result, the Evangelical subjects of the emperor were granted the permission to build 6 so-called churches of Grace (erected ”by the grace of the Emperor”), located in Żagań, Kożuchów, Jelenia Góra, Kamienna Góra, Milicz, and Cieszyn. According to the order of the emperor, the church in Cieszyn was allowed to be built of durable materials, however, it was to be located outside the city walls, which was probably aimed at lowering the prestige of the Evangelical structure. In 1709, a makeshift wooden building was built in the present Kościelny Square, and the construction of a brick building was initiated in the following year. The building, constructed in the years 1710-1730 according to a design by Jan Jerzy Hausrücker of Opava, was to be the only Evangelical church in the whole territory of Upper Silesia, which was reflected not only in its character, but also in its size. The church structure, intended to hold approx. 8 thousand people, combining the shapes of Catholic churches of Bohemia, Moravia, and Austria, popularised by Jesuits, with Evangelical elements in the form of storeyed matronaea, was a novelty in comparison with the traditional local Evangelical architecture of the 16th century. In 1750, after the Evangelical Church was partially acknowledged in the Habsburg Monarchy by Empress Maria Theresa, a church tower was erected. In 1767, a new altar was funded, featuring a symbol of Divine Providence, sculptures of the Evangelists, and a depiction of the Last Supper. In 1785, the church received a Late-Baroque pulpit, a baptismal font, and organs.

After most of Silesia was taken over by Prussia, until Joseph II issued the Patent of Tolerance in 1781, the Cieszyn Church of Jesus together with the associated Evangelical school was the only legal Evangelical centre in Austrian Silesia, referred to as the mother-church. It influenced not only Protestantism in the territory of the Habsburg Monarchy (Hungary, the Balkans, Istria, and Lesser Poland), but also the resurgent Evangelical movements in the Prussian Upper Silesia.

Description

The Church of Jesus was located outside the contemporary city walls, on a hill situated to the east of the historic city, in the present Kościelny Square. In the nearest vicinity of the church, there are structures related functionally to the Evangelical Church, including the building of a former Evangelical school, an Evangelical gymnasium (secondary school), a seminary, and the pastors’ houses.

The church is non-oriented, made of brick, and Baroque in character. It is a three-nave, four-bay basilica with two additional outer naves, whose purpose is to communicate parts of the buildings, and a chancel terminating in a semi-circular apse on the south-east side, with adjoining baptismal and funeral chapels. The structure is covered by a gable roof and separate mono-pitched roofs over the side naves. The dominant feature is the imposing square tower on the front, crowned with a Baroque bulbous four-pitched roof with a lantern. The triaxial facade, being a curtain wall, divided by pilasters and entablatures, is topped with a volute-shaped gable and a tower with pilasters at the corners. On its central axis, a number of steps lead to the main portal, Baroque in character, round-arched and framed by Tuscan pilasters supporting a triangular pediment. The side façades and the apse are decorated with frame divisions and round-arched window openings, arranged into three and four arrays.

The interiors of the main nave and the chancel are not separated; they are covered by a barrel vault with lunettes and arches. The low side naves, opening to the main nave, are separated by piers and surmounted by three levels of arcade-like matronaea. The subtle Baroque interior decoration is linear in character. The walls of the nave and the chancel are divided by double composite pilasters going through the crowning cornice and passing into the vault arches. In the west part of the nave, there is a two-storeyed music choir resting on columns. The only equipment is a Baroque altar from 1766 standing in the chancel, featuring columns in the giant order, sculptures of the Evangelists, and depictions of the Last Supper, a Late-Baroque pulpit, and a Baroque-classical baptismal font from 1785.

The church is open to visitors directly before and after services. It is also possible to visit the Museum of Protestantism, located in the northern gallery of the church.

compiled by Agnieszka Olczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 22-09-2014.

Bibliography

  • Chojecka E., Sztuka protestancka na Górnym Śląsku, w: Oblicza sztuki protestanckiej na Górnym Śląsku, red. E. Chojecka, Katowice 1993, s. 7-11.
  • Harasimowicz J., Słowo widzialne. Luteranizm górnośląski w zwierciadle sztuki, w: Oblicza sztuki protestanckiej na Górnym Śląsku, red. E. Chojecka, Katowice 1993, s. 12-22.
  • Karta ewidencyjna zabytku architektury. Ewangelicki kościół Jezusowy pw. Łaski Bożej [w Cieszynie], opr. M. Godek, 1997, Archiwum NID.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, T. VI, woj. katowickie, z. 3: Miasto Cieszyn i powiat cieszyński, red. I. Rejduch-Samkowa, J. Samek.
  • Sosna W., Szlakiem pamiątek ewangelików cieszyńskich, Cieszyn 2009.
  • Spyra J., Via sacra. Kościoły i klasztory w Cieszynie i Czeskim Cieszynie, Cieszyn 2008.
  • Zabytki Sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, red. S. Brzezicki, C. Nielsen, Warszawa 2006.

transport time to the next site

59 min

21 min

The “Klemens” smelting plant administrative building and hydraulic engineering facilities, currently serving as the Jan Jarocki Museum
Ustroń

one hour

The facility is a valuable historical monument of regional importance - a relic of the once-thriving steel industry, which had existed in Ustroń for more than 200 years. The facility had once boasted the largest concentration of blacksmithing workers in Poland, with the fact that the factory was the second in Europe to manufacture a steam-driven traction engine after the English did so some time earlier serving as a lasting testament to the skills of the local workforce.

History

The history of the smelting industry in Ustroń begins in 1772, when, according to the available historical sources, duke Albrecht Casimir founded the first smelting plant in the area. The surrounding area offered numerous advantages to the smelting industry, including the plentiful supply of timber necessary to power the smelting furnaces as well as the location on the banks of the Vistula river, which served both as a timber transportation route and as a source of power for the forging hammers. The first smelting furnace was put into operation between 1771 and 1772, with the construction of the weir and canal commencing during the same period, the latter flowing from Obłaziec to Skoczów, where it joined the Vistula river. The facility was subsequently extended in 1780, where the “Adam” forge was built. In the mid-19th century, the facility included the “Hildegarda” rolling mill, a tin workshop, a copper processing plant, the “Albrecht” forge, the “Elżbieta” foundry, the “Teresa” and “Krystyna” hammer forges as well as a nail manufacturing plant. The smelting plant management building was erected in the early 19th century and was extended upwards by a single storey in 1844. In 1813, a new rolling mill was erected, followed by the adjoining “Krystyna” forge in the 1820s/1830s. In 1837, a new water-powered hammer forge was opened, allowing for the manufacture of heavy axles; the aim of this development was to modernise the production process as well as to improve the company’s financial results. In the 1850s, the first steam engine was installed on the site of the “Hildegarda” smelting plant, formerly known as the “Krystyna” plant. It was subsequently extended in the years 1854-1856 to include a medium-sized rolling mill. In 1862, the smelting plant was renamed from “Klemens” to “Krystyna”; in the 1870s, the entire enterprise received a new name, “Elżbieta”, while the plant in Ustroń Górny became known as “Krystyna” once again. From the 1870s onwards, the facility’s operations were gradually being wound down, with the rolling mill being moved to Trzyniec in 1877. In 1885, the bridge manufacturing plant and the “Krystyna” forge were both closed down. In 1897, the great furnace burned no more; nevertheless, the metallurgical industry still maintained a presence in Ustroń, albeit on a smaller scale, in the form of the “Klemens” forge, geared for iron processing. In 1906-1907, the iron foundry was phased out, while the boiler manufacturing line was dismantled in 1908. In 1912, the Ustroń manufacturing plant was purchased by the Breviller-Urban company and began functioning as a factory of screws and wrought-iron items. In the 1940s, the facility changed ownership on several occasions; on September 15, 1948, it was finally nationalised and renamed as the Ustroń Smelting Plant. The facility underwent a comprehensive modernisation in the years 1946-1950, with the most significant development being the conversion to gas power. In the 1970s, some of the forging hammers were replaced by presses. In 1976, the construction of the forging press and screw press hall was completed. The construction of the new heat treatment hall began during the same period. In the 1990s, the privatisation process commenced, gradually extending to all the individual departments; five years following its completion in 2003, the entire facility was closed down on August 31, 2008. The former “Klemens” smelting plant management building, erected in the first half of the 19th century, has served as the headquarters of the Jan Jarocki Smelting and Forging Industry Museum, accentuating the industrial lineage of the town and preserving the traces of its more than 200-year-long heritage.

Description

The administrative building of the “Klemens” smelting plant is situated in the southern part of town, alongside the Hutnicza street, its front façade facing the road. It is currently the oldest surviving building of the former smelting plant, designed in the eclectic style with Gothic Revival and Neoclassical influences. Designed as a single-storey, free-standing brick structure with a plaster finish, the edifice was erected on a roughly rectangular plan, its compact body covered with a gable roof, its ridge running in parallel to the street. The rear façade of the building is enlivened by the presence of a two-axial central avant-corps, while the front façade features a modern wooden verandah with latticework side walls preceding the main entrance. The building features a two-bay, three-axial interior layout. The façades are pierced with rectangular windows; the rear and the side façades are devoid of any decorative flourishes whatsoever. The eleven-axial front façade with a central entrance features simple decorations in the form of plain lesenes at the corners of the building as well as a profiled cornice running beneath the eaves, featuring a rhythmic arrangement of corbels. The section of the building incorporating the 5th, 6th and 7th axis features an additional storey. The simple façade of this section of the edifice is accentuated by plain lesenes and a cornice similar to that which graces the ground-floor level; in addition, a bas-relief depicting a coat of arms with mantling and a ducal coronet can be seen on the sixth axis of the building. Inside, there are vaulted ceilings of the barrel type on the basement level as well as a vestibule with a barrel vault with lunettes, supported by structural arches. None of the original fixtures and fittings have survived; the building serves as a museum, with the individual rooms housing various ethnographic exhibits, collections related to the history of the local minorities as well as an exhibition dedicated to the history of agriculture and industry.

One of the first developments to be carried out in Ustroń was the construction of the “Młynówka” canal which served as a transportation route for timber as well as a source of energy powering the forging hammers. The administrative building is accompanied by a pond with a total surface of 6200 square metres, deepened in the 19th century and designed for water accumulation; along with the other hydroengineering facilities, it forms a vital part of the former “Klemens” smelting plant complex.

The building serves as the Jan Jarocki Museum; it is open daily, with specific opening hours and admission prices available on the museum website.

compiled by Agata Mucha, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 09-30-2014.

Bibliography

  • Record sheet of monuments of architecture, The “Klemens” smelting plant - former administrative building, compiled by L. Nosal (1981), Archive of the Regional Monuments Protection Office in Katowice
  • Karta Ewidencyjna Zabytków Architektury i Budownictwa, Budynek Zespołu Szkół Technicznych PSM, dawniej huta ,,Klemens’’, odlewnia ,,Elżbieta’’ tzw. smalcownia, (The PSM engineering school building, formerly part of the “Klemens” smelting plant - the “Elżbieta” foundry), prepared by L. Nosal, 1981, Archive of the Monuments Protection Office in Katowice
  • Record sheet of monuments of architecture, Relikty Huty Stali ,,Klemens’’, późn. ,,Krystyna’’, późn. ,,Elżbieta’’. Budynek biurowy ob. muzeum (Remnants of the “Klemens” steelworks, later known as “Krystyna”, currently known as “Elżbieta”. Office building, currently serving as a museum), prepared by Z. M. Łabęcki, 1994, Archive of the Monuments Protection Office in Katowice
  • Record sheet of monuments of architecture, Relikty Huty Stali ,,Klemens’’, późn. ,,Krystyna’’, późn. ,,Elżbieta’’. Karta zespołu (Remnants of the “Klemens” steelworks, later known as “Krystyna”, currently known as “Elżbieta”. Record sheet), prepared by Z. M. Łabęcki, 1994, Archive of the Monuments Protection Office in Katowice
  • Chlebowski J., Dwa wieki kuźni Ustroń, Katowice 1972
  • Pałka-Bywalec K., Kulturowe dziedzictwo industrialne Ustronia na przykładzie wybranych nieruchomych zabytków techniki, [in:] Wiadomości Konserwatorskie Województwa Śląskiego vol. 5, Zabytki Przemysłu i Techniki, M. Lachowska (ed.), Katowice 2013, pp. 117-136
  • Szkaradnik L., Kuźnia Ustroń 1772-2008. Dzieje zakładu, ludzi i miasta, Ustroń 2011
  • Szlak Zabytków Techniki Województwa Śląskiego, G. Bożek (ed.), Katowice 2006, pp. 77-78.

transport time to the next site

29 min

13 min

Pałacyk myśliwski Habsburgów w Wiśle, ob. schronisko PTTK
Wisła

30 minutes

transport time to the next site

49 min

19 min

The Castlette (Zameczek) – presidential residence
Wisła

one hour

The presidential residence in Wisła is one of the most esteemed of all avant-garde designs of the interwar period in Poland, designed by Adolf Szyszko-Bohusz, who has earned his place in the pantheon of the Polish architects and monument protection experts of the first half of the 20th century. At the heart of the complex lies the so-called “castlette”, in whose design an avant-garde, modernist form was combined with various features of traditional representational architecture, including the architecture of the castles of old, forming a thoroughly modern, prestigious residence designed for the head of state - a design tour de force invoking the strength and resilience of the reborn Polish state, the Second Polish Republic. In addition, the residence also served as a valuable example of the so-called Gesamtkunstwerk concept, enjoying a considerable popularity in the 1920s, whereby both the building and its fixtures and fittings would be treated as a single, all-encompassing work of art.

History

The initiative of erecting a presidential residence in Wisła was often referred to as “Silesia’s gift for the President of the Polish Republic”, emphasising the symbolic integration of the parts of Upper Silesia as well as parts of the Cieszyn Silesia (Austrian Silesia) region with the rest of the country, following their incorporation into the Polish territory in 1922 and 1920 respectively. By decision of the Silesian Regional Council in Katowice adopted in November 1927, the wooden hunting lodge or castlette originally owned by the archduke Ferdinand Habsburg and subsequently abandoned after World War I was to serve as the presidential residence following its restoration. Unfortunately, shortly after the commencement of renovation works of the castlette on Zadni Groń, a hill situated at the foot of the Barania Góra mountain near the source of the Vistula river, the structure was irretrievably lost as a result of a devastating fire which engulfed it in December 1927. In the early 1928, the regional authorities led by the province governor Michał Grażyński decided that a new residence would be built from the ground up in the vicinity of the site of the destroyed manor house, with the funds for its construction being provided by the Silesian Treasury. The construction of the residence, based on the design produced by Adolf Szyszko-Bohusz, commenced in mid- 1929. At the same time, the interior décor and fixtures and fittings, designed by A. Szyszko-Bohusz and Andrzej Pronaszko, were also being crafted so that they could be installed immediately following completion of construction works. In 1930, the construction of a utility building standing on the site of the now-vanished manor house commenced. The building, known as the lower castle, contained the garages, workshops, kitchen as well as servants’ quarters. The complex also encompassed a park, a number of retaining walls as well as tennis courts. In the late 1930/early 1931, the complex was officially handed over to the Civil Chancellery of the President, with President Ignacy Mościcki visiting the castlette in January 1931. Due to the recurring technical issues with the original mono-pitched roofs which led to major leaks and moisture seeping into the building, in 1939 the original arrangement was replaced with steep, multi-pitched roofs.

Description

The presidential residence is located in the village of Wisła Czarne, on the southern slope of the Zadni Groń hill located at the foot of the Barania Góra mountain, near the source of the Vistula river. The castlette lies in a mountainous, densely forested area, surrounded by a 16-hectare landscape park intersected by the winding road known as the Zameczek street, connecting the Czarne village with Kubalonka pass. The grand edifice of the presidential residence itself stands in the centre of the complex; perched atop the hill, the castlette is preceded by a representational driveway with an oval lawn in the middle, positioned west of the building and linked to the Zameczek street located south of the structure. A wooden chapel of the Habsburg family, dating back to 1909, is located north of the castlette, in its immediate vicinity. A large, modern administrative building lies east of the residence, at a much lower elevation, replacing the wooden outbuildings from the early 20th century. A stone stairway had once connected these buildings to the castlette at the hilltop, but much like the buildings themselves, this structure is no longer extant. The so-called lower castle - the former guardhouse with motor car garages - lies north-east of the residence and north of the site of the now-vanished outbuildings, inside the Zameczek street meander.

The presidential residence is a fine example of modernist architecture, built using stone, brick and reinforced concrete. Its characteristic feature is the elongated, harmonious silhouette designed on a segmental arch plan, consisting of a number of asymmetrical sections of varying height, covered with tall, multi-pitched roofs. The single-storey middle section of the castlette features an eastward-facing observation deck offering a commanding view of the Barania Góra mountain. The middle section is flanked by a pair of taller structures - a two-storey northern avant-corps reminiscent of a medieval fortified tower and a monumental, three-storey southern section with a single-storey terrace and a tall eastern tower. The individual façades of the buildings share the same functionalist approach to design, incorporating broad, horizontal strips of windows piercing the monumental walls of the structure. The stone cladding of these walls, featuring a mixture of irregular masonry and the so-called opus spicatum (herringbone) pattern, is a clear reference to traditional castle architecture. The ground-floor level, performing the role of the piano nobile, consists of a long hallway and a representational porch separated from the said hallway by a glazed partition and opening towards the eastern terrace. The interiors of this part of the residence are adorned with modernist paintings by A. Pronaszko. Other notable rooms include the dining room, the drawing room and the smoking room in the southern wing. A half-turn staircase in the southern section of the castlette facilitates access to the first-floor level, where the presidential apartments are situated.

The interiors are graced by the preserved avant-garde, sumptuous fixtures and fittings inspired by the Bauhaus movement, including the functionalist furniture designed by A. Szyszko-Bohusz and A. Pronaszko and manufactured by the Konrad Jarnuszkiewicz company as well as the chandeliers designed by Edmund Bartłomiejczyk.

The historic monument is accessible to visitors. Reservations required.

compiled by Agnieszka Olczyk, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Katowice, 24-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Chojecka E., Pomiędzy historią i nowoczesnością. Treści ideowe Zamku Prezydenta RP w Wiśle, Ziemia Śląska, no. 4, Katowice 1999, pp. 231-245.
  • Długajczyk E., Nowy Zamek w Wiśle - jego budowa i użytkownicy (do 1945 roku), Ziemia Śląska, no. 4, Katowice 1999, pp. 215-229.
  • Mrozek J. M., Zameczek Prezydenta RP w Wiśle na tle twórczości Adolfa Szyszko-Bohusza, Ziemia Śląska, no. 4, Katowice 1999, pp. 311-322.
  • Świechowski Z., Awangarda na usługach elity władzy. Wystrój i mobiliaż Zameczku Prezydenta RP w Wiśle, Ziemia Śląska, no. 4, Katowice 1999, pp. 275-285.
  • Świechowski Z., Zameczek prezydenta Ignacego Mościckiego w Wiśle i jego wyposażenie, [in:] O sztuce Górnego Śląska i przyległych ziem małopolskich, E. Chojecka (ed.), Katowice 1993, pp. 279-290.
  • Zabytki Sztuki w Polsce. Śląsk, S. Brzezicki, C. Nielsen (eds.), Warsaw 2006, pp. 934-935.

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