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Register of the Poland. Poselstwo (Czechoslovakia) Records
59028  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Historical Note
  • Scope and Content Note
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Poland. Poselstwo (Czechoslovakia) records,
    Date (inclusive): 1941-1945
    Collection number: 59028
    Creator: Poland. Poselstwo (Czechoslovakia)
    Collection Size: 16 manuscript boxes (6.6 linear feet)
    Repository: Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Abstract: Correspondence, reports, dispatches, memoranda, bulletins, and printed matter, relating to Polish-Czechoslovak relations, conditions in Poland and Czechoslovakia during World War II, and Allied diplomacy during the war. A digital copy of this entire collection is available at http://szukajwarchiwach.pl/800/44/0/-/ .
    Language: Polish.

    Administrative Information

    Access

    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Poland. Poselstwo (Czechoslovakia) records, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired.

    Accruals

    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/ . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Alternative Forms of Material Available

    Also available on microfilm (17 reels).
    Digital copy in Poland's National Digital Archive at http://szukajwarchiwach.pl/800/44/0/-/ . It was digitized from microfilm by the Polish State Archives.

    Historical Note

    Polish legation with the Czechoslovak government-in-exile in London during World War II.

    Scope and Content Note

    The records of the Polish legation to the Czechoslovak government in London are the only extant ones of this diplomatic post, and document the wartime relationship of those two governments. The bulk of the material dates from 1941 to 1945 and is almost entirely devoted to the idea of creating a confederation between Poland and Czechoslovakia.
    Poland had suspended diplomatic relations with Czechoslovakia after the latter's annexation by Germany in March 1939, but re-established contact the following year on French soil, where leaders of both countries had regrouped after the outbreak of the war. With the fall of France in June 1940, they set up governments-in-exile in London and renewed regular diplomatic relations with each other. The rapprochement between the two countries was facilitated by the fact that Wladyslaw Sikorski, long before he became prime minister in 1939, had warned Poland's ruling elites against isolationism.
    The plan for a confederation was born of wartime exigency and constituted a bold step for two countries that had no history of close ties between them. In 1940, both wished to prevent, once and for all, their history of occupation and division from repeating itself. They sought not only to strengthen their security but also to create friendly relations as a guarantee of a new post-war order. One must also note that Poland, although hoping for stronger ties with other central and eastern European countries as well, considered Czechoslovakia the most important strategic partner, given that its level of industrial development was extremely high.
    General Sikorski strongly supported the idea for a confederation. In addition, there were many other planers in this project who staffed committees and wrote papers, most of whom remain anonymous. Following the war, the communist regimes in Warsaw and Prague blocked the direct evolution of the confederation idea as planned in these records, but those experts involved from the beginning continued to be active well into the 1950s among the circles shaping the idea of a united Western Europe.
    Other important topics in addition to the Polish-Czechoslovak confederation include the Munich Agreement, Poland's borders, Teschen Silesia, relations with the Balkan states and with the Soviet Union, the steel industry, the persecution of Jews in occupied Poland, and wartime intelligence. There are also files relating to such public figures as General Sikorski, Eduard Benes, Jan Masaryk, Stefan Osusky, Hubert Ripka.
    These records were formerly part of the Poland's Foreign Ministry collection, acquired by the Hoover Archives in 1959, and were accessioned in the early 1990s as a separate collection. The legation, however, used its own classification system (given here, in a series list, both in English and Polish), different from the one used by all other Polish diplomatic posts. (For a complete listing of the index numbers in that classification system, please consult the series list of the register to the "Poland. Ministerstwo Spraw Zagranicznych" records.)
    A microfilm copy of these materials has been deposited in the State Archives of Poland in Warsaw.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the repository's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Czechoslovakia--Foreign relations--Poland.
    World War, 1939-1945--Poland.
    World War, 1939-1945--Czechoslovakia.
    World War, 1939-1945--Governments in exile.
    World War, 1939-1945--Diplomatic history.
    Poland--History--Occupation, 1939-1945.
    Czechoslovakia--History--1938-1945.
    World War, 1939-1945.
    Poland.
    Czechoslovakia.
    Poland--Foreign relations--Czechoslovakia.