Mauzoleum generała Bema Tarnów
General Bem’s Mausoleum Tarnów
General Józef Bem, a hero of the Polish and Hungarian struggles for independence, was born in Tarnow in 1794 and died on 10 December 1850 in Aleppo, Turkey (modern-day Syria), where he was buried in the Muslim military cemetery of Jebel El Isam. In 1926, a committee was formed to bring the General's ashes to the country, an endeavour that gained the support of President Ignacy Mościcki and Marshal Józef Piłsudski. In 1927, an impressive mausoleum was erected in the Strzelecki City Park, designed by the Cracovian architect Adolf Szyszko-Bohusz. On an island in the middle of a picturesque pond, a rectangular sarcophagus containing the general's remains rises on six slender Corinthian columns. The stone balls surrounding it allude to artillery, the general's favoured weaponry, and the chains connecting them have been forged from melted cannons. The inscriptions on the walls of the sarcophagus are in Polish, Hungarian and Turkish. Following their exhumation in Syria in 1929, the General's remains were brought to Poland by special train. First, the coffin was exhibited at the National Museum in Budapest, then at the Wawel Castle in Kraków, and was finally deposited in the mausoleum in his hometown during ceremonies attended by the military and by foreign delegations.