The open-air museum of rural traditions in Markowa, administered by the Society of Markowa Village Friends in its holdings has historical buildings, equipment and tools from the 19th and 20th century.
The Society, established in 1979, intended to document the history of the village. Its founding members decided this could be done by preserving a traditional peasants’ croft.
In 1985 the “croft-museum” opened to visitors. The buildings included a cottage, stable and windmill. The exposition was designed to present the life of people living in Markowa in the late 19th/early 20th century. The mission of the museum was expanded to include preservation of cultural heritage and documentation of religious culture, research of rituals and rural religious customs.
Four thematic expositions which were organised were related to the crafts and folk costumes of Markowa village. In the area comprising 3400 square metres visitors could see a stable, a granary, a hut and a pigsty. In the late 1900s, the museum acquired 1100 square meters of land. In 2000 displays were opened in a smithy and in a barn, holding equipment used during harvest. A wooden school building was also added.
The exposition comprises a sector named Museum of Firefighting with exhibits dating from the interwar period. The equipment on display comes from the collection of the Voluntary Fire Brigade in Markowa. The largest exhibits include two horse drawn vehicles: a car for transporting firefighting equipment and a manually operated suction pump with double piston. We can also see here mechanical pumps, firefighters’ clothing, helmets, pike poles and hatchets.
In Markowa there is also Ulma Family Museum of Poles Saving Jews in World War II which was opened in 2016, to commemorate people who risked their lives to save their Jewish neighbours.
Photo: Krystian Kłysewicz
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