The Kosciuszko Foundation 2018 Historical Essay Contest

Historical Essay Contest THE STRUGGLE OF POLAND FOR INDEPENDENCE 1918-1920

After 123 years of partition and occupation, Poland regained its independence in 1918. However, the Polish state had to struggle for two more years on the battlefield and through diplomacy to defend its fragile sovereignty. Roman Dmowski of the Polish National Committee became the spokesman for the Polish interest in the Allied coalition.

In June 1918 the independence of Poland was endorsed by the Allies. On November 11, 1918 the Polish Regency Council granted extensive powers to Jozef Pilsudski who became the First Marshal of the Second Polish Republic. In France, a Polish army known as the Blue Army was formed. It was comprised of 70,000 Poles and 20,000 Polish-Americans. A 30,000-men strong Polish army was also formed in the East. Under Marshal Pilsudski, the united Polish army succeeded in preserving the liberty of Poland.

Please analyze the struggle of Poland for independence between 1918 and 1920 by first addressing the following issues:

i) political objectives of Poland and its diplomatic efforts, ii) building the Polish Army, iii) January 1919 elections, iv) civil rights, women’s rights and rights of minorities, v) securing Poland’s borders with Germany, vi) 1920 Polish-Bolshevik war and its objectives, vii) Battle for Warsaw, its impact on Poland and Europe, viii) the contribution of Polish Americans to the rebirth of Poland.

Next, please evaluate which of the above developments were the most important in preserving Poland’s independence.

Awards: $5,000 First Prize, $2,000 Second Prize, $1,000 Third Prize. Additional essays may be considered for recognition and publication. Requirements: The essay shall reflect contestant’s own research and original thinking. The paper shall not exceed 15 pages (excluding bibliography), shall be typed in 12-point font, double-spaced with 1” margins; pages shall be numbered. All entries become the property of the Polonia Institute and will not be returned. The finalists may be asked for live presentation via electronic media. The essays may be published and quoted. Eligibility: The 2018 Historical Essay Contest is open to all residents of the United States of America and Canada between ages 20 and 27 as of July 1, 2018. Proof of age is required. A copy of a valid document showing a date of birth is acceptable.

Deadline: July 1, 2018 (postmark date). Results will be announced by August 15, 2018. Procedure: The Application Form can be found at: Enclose the essay and proof of age to the Application form and mail to: The Polonia Institute 2785 Pacific Coast Highway, #295 Torrance, CA 90505 Email: [email protected]

The Polonia Institute 2785 Pacific Coast Highway # 295 Torrance, CA 90505 Email: [email protected] 2018