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Polish Hero Casimir Pulaski

Polish Hero Casimir Pulaski
granted honorary US citizenship

The U.S. House of Representatives voted unanimously on October 8, 2009 to award citizenship posthumously to Polish Hero, Casimir Pulaski.

Democratic Representative Dennis Kucinich, who introduced the bill, said "It is my sincere hope that Brigadier General Pulaski will not have to wait much longer before he is bestowed with the honorary citizenship he so deserves for his sincere commitment and ultimate sacrifice for freedom for the people of the United States of America."

Casimir Pulaski

General Casimir Pulaski was a Polish-born hero of the American Revolution and is known as the time-honored "Father of the American Cavalry." Pulaski, a native of Poland, fought on the side of the colonists against the British in the American Revolution. He fought valiantly in defense of freedom in several battles, including Charleston and Brandywine, where he saved George Washington's life.

Pulaski has been honored throughout U.S. history. In September, 1929, Congress designated October 11 as Pulaski Day to be observed by Presidential Proclamation. It also authorized the Post Office to issue a Pulaski commemorative stamp. In 1973, Illinois designated the first Monday of March as Pulaski Commemorative day in Illinois and in 1986 declared the day to be a state holiday.

Only six people in history have ever earned the honor of being declared honorary citizens of the United States, including Winston Churchill, General La Fayette, and Mother Teresa. Pulaski would be the seventh person to receive this great honor.

Full text of the Resolution:

JOINT RESOLUTION

Proclaiming Casimir Pulaski to be an honorary citizen of the United States posthumously.

Whereas Casimir Pulaski was a Polish military officer who fought on the side of the American colonists against the British in the American Revolutionary War;

Whereas Benjamin Franklin recommended that General George Washington accept Casimir Pulaski as a volunteer in the American Cavalry and said that Pulaski was `renowned throughout Europe for the courage and bravery he displayed in defense of his country's freedom';

Whereas, after arriving in America, Casimir Pulaski wrote to General Washington, `I came here, where freedom is being defended, to serve it, and to live or die for it.';

Whereas the first military engagement of Casimir Pulaski with the British was on September 11, 1777, at the Battle of Brandywine, and his courageous charge in this engagement averted a disastrous defeat of the American Cavalry and saved the life of George Washington;

Whereas, on September 15, 1777, George Washington elevated Casimir Pulaski to the rank of Brigadier General of the American Cavalry;

Whereas Casimir Pulaski formed the Pulaski Cavalry Legion, and in February 1779, this legion ejected the British occupiers from Charleston, South Carolina; Whereas, in October 1779, Casimir Pulaski mounted an assault against British forces in Savannah, Georgia;

Whereas, on the morning of October 9, 1779, Casimir Pulaski was mortally wounded and was taken aboard the American ship USS Wasp, where he died at sea on October 11, 1779; Whereas, before the end of 1779, the Continental Congress resolved that a monument should be erected in honor of Casimir Pulaski;

Whereas, in 1825, General Lafayette laid the cornerstone for the Casimir Pulaski monument in Savannah, Georgia; and Whereas, in 1929, Congress passed a resolution recognizing October 11 of each year as Pulaski Day in the United States:

Now, therefore, be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That Casimir Pulaski is proclaimed to be an honorary citizen of the United States posthumously.

Illinois Senator Richard Durbin is working to pass the measure in the Senate.


See more of General Pulaski and Pulaski Square in Cleveland

Pulaski Square in Cleveland Ohio

Casimir Pulaski Square in Cleveland Ohio (photos by Dan Hanson)



Casimir Pulaski Square in Cleveland Ohio (photos by Dan Hanson)


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