On 31st October, Kraków celebrates the 101st anniversary of the end of Austrian rule as part of the partition of Poland.

On 31st October 1918, Kraków became the first city in Poland to be liberated from Austrian rule, bringing the 123 year partition to an end, as Poland regained it’s independence.

To celebrate, public transport, official buildings and city squares will display the blue and white flag of Kraków, and the Kladka Bernatka and Tauron Arena, will be bathed in special blue and white illumination.

At 1200 midday on Thursday 31st October, there will be a ceremonial laying of flowers at the commemorative plaque by the town hall tower on Rynek.

On 31st October 1918, a young Polish officer Antoni Stawarz and his men, took over Płaszow train station, Austrian barracks at Podgórze, then marched on the guardhouse by the City Hall tower on Rynek, and by their actions, liberated Kraków, from Austrian occupation, ahead of the subsequent liberation of Poland at the end of World War 1.

Loyal Polish railwaymen sent a historic ‘signal’ declaring:

“Revolution in Krakow. The Polish government took power. Suspend all transports that would like to go abroad, direct them to Krakow. “

You can read more about the liberation of Kraków:-

Kraków Was the First’ – AGH History Article

‘The Tower of Freedom’- Krakow Travel Article

Antoni Stawarz (Podgórze Museum)

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