Savannah Battlefield CeremonyOctober 9, 2019
(l. to r.) Monica Pinkowski, Peter J. Obst, Jack Pinkowski, Edward Krolikowski (mounted), Russell Dobson (mounted)
(l. to r.) Monica Pinkowski, Jack Pinkowski with his Polish Citizenship Certificate,
Consul Marzena Gronostajska at the RP Consulate in Washington, DC (Sept. 12, 2019)
Commemoration of the 240th Anniversary of the Battle of Savannah
Early on the morning of Wednesday, October 9th, even before the sun rose, historical re-enactors and friends of the American Revolution gathered in the parking lot of the Savannah Visitors Center. Once formed up the column proceeded to the nearby battlefield accompanied by bagpiper Shane Parris. Leading the march were two mounted soldiers: Gen. Pulaski (portrayed by Edward Krolikowski) and Lt. Litomski (portrayed by Russell Dobson). Behind them followed the soldier-reenactors and the public. As they reached the battlefield sounds of cannon fire were heard.
Emily Beck of the Coastal Heritage Society, which organizes this annual event, greeted the arrivals and introduced the speakers. Among them was Congressman Earl Leroy "Buddy" Carter who represents Georgia's 1st Congressional District. This year, four new commemorative tablets were dedicated on the field. Several speakers followed.
Charles Sieracki, past-president of the Polish-American Society of Charleston introduced the tablet for Capt. Feliks Miklaszewicz a Polish Lithuanian nobleman who aided the American Revolution as a privateer. This tablet was sponsored by Mr. Raymond Okonski of Detroit. Mr. Okonski, 93, could not be present as he had recently suffered a severe health setback.
Peter J. Obst, from the Poles in America Foundation, introduced the tablet for Capt. Fryderyk Paschke, an officer in the Pulaski Legion. This tablet was sponsored by the Embassy of the Polish Republic in Washington DC.
Mr. Stephen McCutchen spoke on behalf the families who sponsored tablets for John McCutchen and Mr. Thomas Snelson, who had also taken part in the American Revolution.
Various patriotic organizations placed wreaths on the field to honor the men who fought in the battle. These included various chapters of the Sons of the American Revolution, Sons of the Revolution in the State of Georgia, the Polish Embassy, the Friends of Polish Art in Detroit, the Savannah Gen. Pulaski Committee, Daughters of the American Revolution, Colonial Dames, the Holt and Bonaventure Historical Societies and others. Among the honored guests was City of Savannah alderman Bill Durrence. Jack Pinkowski, president of the Poles in America Foundation was there with his wife, Monica. It should be noted that Jack became a Polish citizen this year, on basis of a decree issued by the office of Poland's President, Andrzej Duda.
The ceremonies concluded with a firing of a musket salute by an honor squad. The Coastal Heritage Society, the Savannah General Pulaski Committee, the participating re-enactor groups and patriotic organizations did a tremendous job in organizing and carrying out the event. They deserve our grateful appreciation. Afterward, all visitors were invited to breakfast at the Visitor Center. The commemoration ended with an upbeat note with everyone looking forward to next year's ceremonies.
1. Assembly in the morning at first light
2. Marching to the battlefield
3. The battlefield in the morning
4. The battlefield in the morning
5. Audience listens to Congressman Buddy Carter
6. Audience listens to Emily Beck from the Coastal Heritage Society (CHS)
7. Honor Guard fires Muskets
8. Honor Guard Presents Arms
9. On the attack
10. Riders (l. to r.) Russell Dobson and Edward Krolikowski -- Piper, Shane Parris
11. Riders (l. to r.) Edward Krolikowski and Russell Dobson
12. Placing wreaths on the rampart
14. Polish Tablets placed on the Savannah Battlefield in 2019
15. Pulaski Monument in Monterey Square
16. Sign at entrance to Fort Pulaski, National Monument, US Park Service