Wednesday, 5 August 2015

The Monument of the Fallen Shipyard Workers in Gdansk

6th August 2015

Gdansk is not only a very popular tourist destination but the spot with historical significance. On the way to the beach we saw the Monument of the Fallen Shipyard Workers




Lying right outside famous gate no. 2 to the Gdansk Shipyards, the monument was unveiled in 1980 to commemorate the events of 1970 when 45 people died during street riots protesting against the communist regime.

Along with wage demands and the right to form free trade unions, the right to erect this memorial was one of Solidarity's main demands during the 1980 lock-in. The 42-metre, 139-tonne steel sculpture stands on the spot where the first three victims of the 1970 riots were killed. There are three crosses to represent the three victims and the crosses themselves signify the suffering and sacrifice of all the protesters. At the top you see anchors signifying the men’s profession and in the lower reaches the figures of their struggling comrades are depicted.

Solidarity leader Lech Walesa referred to this enormous steel structure as “a harpoon driven through the body of a whale. No matter how hard the whale struggles, it can never get rid of it.”



The monument is marked by a poignant inscription by Czesław Miłosz: 'You who have harmed simple man, mocking him with your laughter, you kill him, someone else will be born, and your deeds and words will be written down'.

The statue forms the centrepiece of what is known as Solidarity Square and surrounding it are several memorials and plaques dedicated to victims of totalitarianism. Overlooking the square is the new European Solidarity Centre.

18 comments:

  1. Well done Gosia.
    Keep the historical facts coming - your just might educate
    some people of the struggles that Gdansk went through over
    the centuries.
    Cheers
    Colin

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    1. Yes you are right Gdansk is very interesting city full of landmarks

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  2. It sure is a mighty memorial to remember a dark period in history. If only those killed could come back and see what their struggles resulted in.

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    1. Yes now is freedom and independent republic

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  3. Great article, Thanks for your great information, the content is quiet interesting. I will be waiting for your next post.

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  4. It was an interesting period in history and led to huge world changes. I don't think Walesa earnt much respect though afterwards.

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    1. Andrew you can't believe, He was the first President of independent Republic of Poland

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  5. A sad part of history that brought about change. Thank you, Gosia.

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    Replies
    1. A tragic part of history which allowed to get freedom

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  6. The monument is good. Thanks for the history too..

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    Replies
    1. The monument is impressive and so huge

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  7. Replies
    1. Glory for victims should be eternal

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  8. It's hard to believe that was so long ago!

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    Replies
    1. Definitely but time fly,... and so next generation don't remember it

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  9. That is an impressive monument. It is good to remember the sacrifices others made for our freedom.

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  10. I agree with Bethany. It's very impressive!

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