Poland, throughout its history, has proven to be a resilient nation, disappearing for decades as a result of being annexed by neighboring nations. The Slavic tribes, one of which was the Polane, settled in the northeastern corner of Europe.  From that early settlement emerged the nation of Poland.  Following World War I,  Poland became an independent country.  Poland suffered millions of casualties during World War II, and the end of that holocaust brought domination by the Soviet Union.  Following forty years of being behind the Iron Curtain, a labor movement called Solidarity, influenced the Soviets to loosen control, and in 1989, the Soviet Union lifted the Iron Curtain.  The following year Poland began the process of political liberalization, and the transition to a free-market economy.

Poland is an area of flat, fertile plains with mountains in the south, and the Baltic Sea in the north.  The country is surrounded by several nations formerly behind the Iron Curtain: Germany, the Ukraine, Belarus, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic.  The capital, Warsaw, is near the center of the country.  The population of approximately 39,000,000 is predominantly Roman Catholic.

The climate is cold and cloudy with moderately severe winters, and summers are mild with recurrent showers and thunderstorms.

The language spoken in Poland is Polish.  It is closely related to Czech and is placed in the Slavic branch of the Indo-European linguistic family just like English.

The Republic of Poland is a multi-party democracy, with a president, a prime minister and two legislative houses, which are the Senate and the Diet.

Once the capital of Poland, Plock sits on the nation’s most fabled river, the Wisla, made famous in many poems and ballads. Ancient institutions, buildings and traditions make Plock a destination of choice, and it features the famed Wisla Dancers as its folk dancing national treasure. 

The History of the Plock Relationship

In 1989, Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne associate Professor Bronislaw Misztal suggested that Plock become Fort Wayne’s second sister city. Through the efforts of Indiana-Purdue University Professor Bronislaw Misztal, Business Executive Roman Hildt, Polish Community Activist Stanley Podzielinski, Polish Senator Andrzej Celinski, and Solidarity Chief of Staff, a concept of linking Fort Wayne to Poland began to emerge as a perfect vehicle to share America’s experience with democracy. Stanley Podzielinski as President of White Eagle Lodge 3149, an affiliate of the Polish National Alliance, was able to garner support for this relationship.

Polish Senator Andrezcj Celinski carried a statement of intent from Fort Wayne Sister Cities International signed by President Gabriel Delobbe and Mary Ball Brant.  The official recognition was completed in March of 1990 by Fort Wayne Mayor Paul Helmke and Plock Mayor Andre Dretkiewicz.  Since that time, there have been many exchanges, including Plock’s Wisla Folk Ensemble appearing multiple times in Fort Wayne; several Fort Wayne teachers conducting summer classes in English in Plock; as well as celebrations in both cities commemorating anniversaries of the alliance.  A Polish style garden was constructed in Fort Wayne by Plock  gardeners as part of the Tenth Anniversary celebration.  A Plock student was the first recipient of the Chapman Scholarship.  Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger High School has a sister-school relationship with Plock Malachowianka Lyceum.
Plock is governed by a mayor and a city council.

Information above was obtained from the following websites:
www.geocities.com/arekgondek/
www.poland.pl/
www.matchc.com/travel/Plock.html
www.poland.com/business/
www.polandtour.org/

To learn more about Plock 
http://www.ump.pl
http://www.igrp.com/pl

Other Connections 
http://www.jagiellonka.plock.pl/

Fort Wayne Polish Organizations
http://www.whiteeaglelodge.blogspot.com