In the Warsaw Insurgents Park in Wola, 20 ash trees and maples were planted. – Already in Homer’s Iliad, the tree is shown as a symbol of people’s memory because it lives longer than man. We want the memory of the Warsaw Uprising to be longer than the life of one man, to pass something on to the next generations, said Jan Ołdakowski, director of the Warsaw Uprising Museum, during the project’s inauguration.
During the 77th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising, it was inaugurated the “Roots of Memory” campaign. The Warsaw Uprising Museum invited the children and grandchildren of the insurgents to tell about their ancestors – the insurgents. Reports are collected about what they most often mentioned, what topics they avoided, what emotions accompanied these stories, and whether the insurgent past of their ancestors had an impact on their lives.
Another element of the project is the initiative to plant trees in the Warsaw Insurgents Park in Wola. On Saturday noon, it was inaugurated by the vice-president of Warsaw, Tomasz Bratek, and the director of the MPW, Jan Ołdakowski. They were accompanied by people who were the first to tell about their relatives as part of the “Roots of Memory” campaign.
So far, 20 ash trees and maples have been planted in the park. Each of them is dedicated to one person. In front of the trees there are plates with names and surnames. There are also QR codes on them that will take us to the insurgent’s biography on the museum’s website.
– The trees we plant will be a symbol of remembrance, respect and tribute that we owe to our heroes. We believe that it is important not only for the insurgents, for us today, but above all for future generations. As wise people say: we must leave our children not only wings but also roots. They will find their roots here, they will be alive here – said Vice President Bratek.
Each tree tells the story of one person
During the press conference, Jan Ołdakowski turned to the insurgents who had taken part in the “Roots of Memory” campaign. – You told us something very important in these interviews. You told something about yourself, what part of you comes from the Warsaw insurgents, how they shaped you, what they handed over to you – he said.
– Today I can say that everyone who writes to us, sends a questionnaire, records an interview and takes part in the “Roots of Memory” campaign, at the end they will have a tree to commemorate his grandmother or grandfather. A tree whose symbolism we all understand. Already in Homer’s Iliad, the tree is shown as a symbol of people’s memory because it lives longer than man. We want the memory of the Warsaw insurgents to be longer than the life of one person, to pass something on to the next generations – noted Ołdakowski. – This memory lives in families and I hope that by participating in the “Roots of Memory” campaign, you have made a commitment that you will pass it on to the next generations – he said to the families of the insurgents.
– The tree is a symbol that memory should grow. It should have roots and be bigger every year – he emphasized.
Director Ołdakowski announced that the insurgents’ biographies on the site’s website will contain information about where the trees commemorating them grow, so that everyone can find them.
Main photo source: Piotr Nowak / PAP