Casimir Pulaski - 1747-1779. Early 19th century portrait from the collections of the Pulaski Museum in Warka-Winiary.
Western New York Celebrates
the Legacy of General Casimir Pulaski - A Revolutionary War
"I came here, where freedom is being defended, to serve it, and to
live or die for it," wrote Casimir Pulaski to George Washington in
a letter in which he offered his military services to America
during the Revolutionary War. He proved true to his word. At age
32, his heroic death at the Battle of Savannah on October 11, 1779
was received with sorrow across the land. General Pulaski's life
represents the dedication of countless Americans of Polish and
other ethnic origin to the principles of personal liberty and
independence, which have always defined the spirit of the United
States of America.
Born into a wealthy family in Poland in 1747,
Pulaski, as a young man, fought for freedom from Russia in his
homeland until 1771, when he was exiled to France. In Paris he met
American envoy Benjamin Franklin, who influenced him to help
Americans fight for their independence. Washington was so impressed
with Pulaski's abilities during the Battle of Brandywine Creek that
he recommended the Continental Congress appoint Pulaski as general
of the American cavalry. In 1778, Pulaski organized an independent
corps of cavalry and light infantry known as the Pulaski Legion. It
is reported that he spent $50,000 of his own money to help train
and equip his troops.
Since the 1930s, Pulaski's legacy has been celebrated
in an annual Pulaski Day Parade and wreath-laying ceremony in
Buffalo, New York. The October parade is organized by the General
Pulaski Association of Western New York, which was founded to
preserve the memory and the legacy of one of America's greatest
Documentation comprises a five-page report.
Originally submitted by: Jack Quinn ,Representative (30th District).
The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.