Folk bird-whistlels from Krakow, Poland, photo by Maja Trochimczyk
In 2018, the Polish American Historical Association (PAHA) will celebrate its 75th anniversary. As part of the celebration, PAHA plans to publish an illustrated volume on the immigrant experience of Polish Americans, people who travelled across the Atlantic to establish a new life in North America.
Polish folk Dances - Krakowiak and Kujawiak by Zofia Stryjenska
Historical photo from the Polish Home in Rochester, NY
Such objects can tell a story of their past, emotional involvement, aesthetic preferences, ethical life choices, and leisure activities. They provide insight into the material culture, diverse ways of living, and pasts that they wish to either remember or forget. The materials objects carry both local and global dimensions; they can define us directly or indirectly through associations. Finally, the decision to keep certain objects not only speaks about our past life, but about us in the present as well.
Dance of the Krakusy Ensemble in Los Angeles in Lowicz costumes, 1980s
The Polish American Historical Association is announcing a wide, American search for material objects that speak about and to the Polish American experience, an experience of the life of an immigrant: its plurality and complexity, including fear and longing, joy and excitement, and the desire for and the fluid nature of stability. We are looking for photos and description of objects that traveled across the Atlantic along with their owners as symbols of lives and homes left behind as well as those acquired during the journey and after the arrival to the new place, as something that symbolizes individual activities and identity shaped here; for example, clothing, household items, toys, musical instruments, and various small or large self-made objects that tell a piece of a family’s history. We are especially interested in the history that a given object carries, its individual story, values, joys, and tribulations it symbolizes; and particular events or people from the past it commemorates.
Polish medal pinned to bread, photo by Maja Trochimczyk
Szopka krakowska (Nativity Scene) and bird-whistles, photo by Maja Trochimczyk
Department of Social Sciences
4901 Evergreen Road
Dearborn, MI 48128, USA
The deadline for submission is July 1, 2017.
St. Casimir Society in Rochester, NY - Photo from Society of Poles's Polish Home.