These treasures reflect Poland's beauty and history.
They've risen to the top of the melting pot. People of polish ancestry are among the proudest of American citizens. Poles populated many of the communities that contributed to the growth of America. They are a sturdy part of the backbone of American industry and agriculture. Today, multitudes of people with family roots in Poland maintain with fierce pride the standards of integrity and strength that were established by their forefathers.
What Polish collectibles are most popular?
The arts, crafts and traditions of that noble heritage accompanied those Polish families who journeyed from their homeland to make a new life in the United States. Handmade items were guarded on long voyages across the sea. Today, talented craftsmen continue the tradition of rendering similar fine items and replicating historical treasures. Now, the beloved collectibles, handcrafts, jewelry and treasures of Poland are shared, displayed and given as gifts on many special occasions. Gift items ranging from intricately-worked Polish daggers to lovely hand-painted Easter eggs are received with joy and respect.
Polish art is reflective of a rich culture and the dignity of its artists. Polish communities still maintain schools where the native language is taught alongside English. Polish organizations foster the knowledge and practice of cultural riches such as ethnic dances, songs and the sharing of oral histories through story telling. Handcrafts such as pottery making, wood carving and needle arts are taught to young people in an effort to nurture time-honored traditions. Gifts of Polish collectibles frequently become family heirlooms.
Do Polish collectibles reflect a long history?
Historians estimate that the area known today as Poland was settled some 2,000 years ago. A scant hundred years before Poland's first leaderóPrince Mieszko Iócame to the fore, the first Slavic tribes to settle there organized the area into a designated region. Poland's first kingóBoleslaw I, son of Prince Mieszko Ióbegan his reign after conquering several vast territories nearby the new country. He died in 1025, the same year he donned the crown. Tumult prevailed, on and off, for long periods after his demise.
Poland's geographic location in the heart of Eastern Europe put the country in harm's way in more than one era. Its perimeter was not bounded on any side by deep ravines, high mountains or seashores that easily could be defended against invading armies. Raging conflicts with land-grabbing neighbors during World War I and later invasions by Hitler's troops during World War II took a toll on a populace that never gave away one bushel of their national pride.
The geographic boundaries of Poland changed many times during its history. The boundaries dissipated all together at times, depending on the political situation. Folks of Polish ancestry who wished to travel to America sometimes were forced by the political changes to declare on their passports that they were residents of Germany, Austria, Hungary or other countries. It was the fall of the Iron Curtain and the waning of Communism that finally gave relief to the Polish people and imparted a renewed sense of national identity.
What items are ideal for display?
One who wishes to give a little piece of Poland to a friend, family member or other loved one has a multitude of choices. But think carefully about the purchase of a Polish dagger, sword, handcrafts and more lavish gifts such as fine Polish jewelry. Consider the recipient's personality. Think about the amount of space the person has available to properly safeguard or display a gift.
In addition, give a moment's thought to whether or not the person enjoys creative arts such as weaving, painting or rendering landscapes in pen and ink. Match the gift to the person's value system. And if the proposed gift is fragile, consider whether there is in the home an abundance of lively young children or large, clumsy pets.
Choosing a Polish dagger, a replica of a silver sword or another of the many Polish collectibles available can be an adventure. Your gift will be well received and given a place of honor in the recipients home, as long as you think about your selection well in advance. Most people like receiving gifts. However, if the recipient maintains a home where the only sign of decoration is a bowl of ripe fruit on the dining room table, there is one gift that's irresistible. It is an option laced with orange rind, rum and raisins: freshly baked Polish babka.