October is Polish American Heritage Month

October is Polish American Heritage Month!

There are currently about 10 million Americans of Polish descent in the United States, making it the largest diaspora of Poles in the world.

For the past 400 years, Polish people have been integral to America’s history and culture. Millions of our Polish ancestors immigrated to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, bringing with them a love for independence, their culture, their new country, and values shared by Poles and Americans.

The first Polish American Heritage month event took place in Philadelphia PA in 1981 and became a national celebration of Polish history, culture, and pride. The idea soon gained national interest, and in 1984 House Joint Resolution 577 was passed, officially naming the month of August as Polish American Heritage Month. In 1986, the observation was moved to October, in part to honor the arrival of the first Polish settlers in Jamestown, Virginia in 1608 and also to commemorate the deaths of General Kazimierz Pułaski (11 October 1779) and Tadeusz Kościuszko (15 October 1817), two renowned military leaders who fought for our independence during the American Revolution.

The main objective of Polish American Heritage Month is to highlight the contributions Poles and Polish Americans have made to the United States, celebrate our achievements and cultural heritage, and share its beauty with the community at large.

How do you celebrate Polish Heritage month? Why are you proud to be a Polish American? Let us know by emailing us at pacwash@pac1944.org. We look forward to reading your submissions. We will publish the best ones on our website.