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Grand Rapids in 1856

Scene of early Grand Rapids viewed from the...

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Maciej Adamski of Trzemeszno

by Diana Barrett

 Maciej Adamski has used his research to write several articles in local Polish publications. One of them, Przemiany (Changes), contained a large article, as well as photographs, “Emigrants from Trzemeszno – an unbelievable story.” His article had an interesting outcome—A reporter contacted Adamski for permission to borrow a photo from the article, a portrait of Valeria Lipczynski with her medals (from the Grand Rapids Public Library)  for an exhibition about General Haller’s army (Lipczynska had helped them during WWI) in the cathedral in Gniezno, a few kilometers from Trzemeszno. So one of our honored citizens was honored, once more, in her native land.

 Adamski teaches history and English at the Lyceum in Trzemeszno. The school, founded by abbot and bishop Kosmowski, has been in operation since 1776.  It is composed of three buildings, a main building and two smaller ones. An exceptionally busy teacher, Adamski is involved in many outside programs that revolve around both his students and his love of history. Recently he organized a trip to Denmark for a group of 6 students where they attended an Innovation Camp in Kalundborg.  There were students from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and the United States. In past years he has been involved, with his students, in the European Young Readers Prize organized by the French society “Livres en Europe.”

In the summer of 2010 he received a grant to go to Canterbury in England to participate in a course for English language teachers, "Using new technologies in the classroom." There were teachers from Bulgaria, Spain, Slovakia, Greenland, Russia, Italy, Romania and Cyprus. His students benefit as he now maintains English language blogs for them.

Adamski has just begun training for a new project called “student-on-line,” a four-year program providing EU money, which will give the school some additional equipment: a laptop computer, digital camera, multimedia projector, camera etc. In exchange he will have additional classes—two hours a week with a group of about 12-15 students. 

And if that isn't enough of a busy schedule, for the past four years Adamski has also been an elected town councilor of Trzemeszno, and has just been re-elected for another four-year term.

 When asked about his excellent English, Adamski wrote, “In fact, I am used to US English. When I studied in Poznan I lived in a room with two American students who were at my university (it was a kind of special programme, one semester for American students interested in Polish history and culture, it was in 1990-93).  So I had quite a lot of America friends-in fact I was a best man at two Polish-American weddings.”

 In a recent email Adamski described a family reunion. His paternal grandmother organizes meetings of the whole family, which has a common ancestor, Andrzej Mądry, who lived at the beginning of 19th century. He had at least four wives, so the family is very big and some are really distant relatives. It was the third event since 2006, and it seems a good time was had by all.

 Thank you to Maciej Adamski for reaching across the world to connect Trzemeszno, Poland with Grand Rapids, Michigan.

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