Muzeum Papiernictwa w Dusznikach-Zdroju

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European Heritage Days in the Museum of Papermaking

12.09.2014

Europe is the continent rich in monuments which are proofs of historical events. Many of them still cannot be visited, mainly due to proprietary reasons. Barely 30 years ago, France gave rise to an idea that historical facilities should be made available to tourist at least once a year. In 1991, on the initiative of this country, the European Council established European Heritage Days (EHD). Currently, the events organised within this action are organised in almost all countries in our continent. Poland joined EHD in 1993. At present, the National Heritage Institution, is a national coordinator of this event and chooses the leading topic each year. In 2013 the undertaking was organised under the phrase “The Poland was not built in a day”, in turn, the leitmotiv of the present edition is “Heritage – source of identity”.

The Museum of Papermaking, especially for EHD, presents topics connected with the history of Duszniki-Zdrój, our paper mill as well as topics connected with the history of technology. The coordinator of the event on the side of the museum is Dagmara Kacprowska.

On 14 September 2014, within EHD, we listened to the lecture presented by prof. Rafał Eysymontt titled “Mills and water wheels as one of the main urbanisation factors in Silesia”.

Professor Eysymontt is a scientific and didactic employee in the Institute of Art History at the University of Warsaw. Our lecturer’s main research interests are: urbanism history, city readjustment, medieval architecture. There are numerous articles and elaborations on this topics prepared by the professor, including the book “The genetic code of the city. The medieval cities located in Lower Silesia in the background of European urbanism” from 2009 as well as “Touristic features of city halls in Lower Silesia” from 2012. The professor has scientific connections with Duszniki; he is the author of the unpublished elaboration “Historical and Urban Study of Duszniki-Zdrój” from 1992 as well as the article published in the 6th volume of the year book of the Museum of Papermaking “Duszniki and Lądek – cities at two ends of Kłocko area – comparison”.

During his lecture, professor Eysymontt presented the examples of water energy use: for flour production, grinding bark, in fulling mills, sawmills, water pumping plants and papermaking facilities. He discussed numerous examples of mills in Silesian cities. He also presented the first known image of a paper mill in Wrocław which was illustrated on the map of Bartel Weihner of 1562.

Upon the lecture, there were workshops organised, the aim of which was to locate the site of the wheel of the mill in the Duszniki papermaking facility. This wheel was located in the south side, on the right from the moulding room exit. The workshops were carried out as a part of an educational programme under the project Upgrade and adaptation of the historic drying facility for cultural purposes as well as fire protection of the Museum of Papermaking complex in Duszniki-Zdrój, along with the maintenance and digitisation of Museum collections. (Support granted from Norwegian grants and EEA funds, coming from Island, Lichtenstein and Norway as well as sources of the local government of the Province of Lower Silesia).

Maciej Szymczyk