OUR NON-REMEMBRANCE. THE FATE OF POLISH COLLECTIONS IN 1914–1920
The article is devoted to the fate of Polish collections, including book collections, during the wars that swept through Poland’s territory in 1914–1920: events on the eastern front of WWI, civil war after the Bolshevik revolution in Russia, Polish-Ukrainian conflict of 1918–1919 and Polish-Bolshevik war, the apogee of which came in 1920. Polish collections suffered heavy losses as a result of evacuation of a huge number of historical items to Russia, as a result of warfare, pillaging and deliberate destruction. The collections that were most affected were private collections in the eastern part of pre-partition Poland and in the territories incorporated into the Russian Empire. Safe-guarding of historical heritage was undertaken by Polish societies for the protection of historical heritage, established in the Kingdom of Poland and in Russia. They compiled the first inventories of lost and damaged cultural goods as well as those taken to Russia. Documentary work was under-taken by individual scholars as well; in addition, the first publications dealing with the matter began to appear at the time. The work was continued with a view to future restitution of the goods to Poland, which regained independence in 1918.