The Dobrowolski's List of Famous Polish People

  1. Artists, Authors, and Musicians
  2. Athletes
  3. Educators
  4. Great Thinkers
  5. Movie and Television Stars
  6. Political Leaders and Politicians
  7. Religious Leaders
  8. Scientists and Engineers
  9. War Heroes and Warriors
  10. Others
Artists, Authors, and Musicians

Fryderyk Chopin: gifted pianist and composer who rediscovered the piano similar to the way Columbus rediscovered America. A poet, performer and romantic at heart, Chopin's compositions were considered too bland and timid for many of his contemperaries. However, in spite of consistent illness and recurring trauma concerning the fate of his homeland, Poland, Chopin's music has now become the standard by which all other piano composers are judged.

Walter Dana: polka promoter. Propelled polka music to a new prominence in postwar America.

Adam Didur: opera singer, at the beginning of the 20th century, for 25 years, prinicipal bass of the Metropolitan Opera.

Andrzej Dobrowolski: contemporary Polish composer born in Lvov in 1921. Dobrowolski's major works include "Music for Tape and Oboe Solo, Music for Strings, Winds, & Two Loudspeakers," and "Music for Mixed Choir, Winds, & Percussion." "Music for Orchestra" (1973) is one of a group of recent compositions by Dobrowolski that have crystalized in final form years of compositional experimentation in increasingly progressive techniques. The composer's concern with the spatial moulding of sound is especially evident in these works. For example Dobrowolski has divided up an orchestra into eight groups each of which is located at a different site on the stage or in the concert hall itself

Bronislaw Kaper: composer, composed for nearly 150 Hollywood movies, won Oscar for Lili.

Jan Kiepura: opera singer, star of the Metropolitan Opera and Broadway.

Jerzy Kosinski: writer, author of The Painted Bird.

Stanislaw Lem : science fiction writer, best know for his novel Solaris, which was later adapted in the 1972 and 2002. His books have sold 27 million copies worldwide. (died at age 84 in on March 26, 2006)

Czeslaw Milosz: poet and writer, won Nobel prize for literature. (1980)

Helena Modrzejewska: actress, famous in the XIX century America for her appearances in Shakespeare's plays

Ignacy Jan Paderewski: pianist, composer and statesman, loved by the American audience, played an important role in establishing free Poland after the World War I, Prime Minister.

Ed Paschke: contemporary painter, representative of the Chicago Abstract Imagists.

Roman Polanski: film director, famous for Rosemary's Baby, Chinatown and other movies.

Leopold Stokowski: conductor.

Wislawa Szymborska: Poet. She won the 1996 Nobel Prize for Literature.

Leopold Tyrmand: writer, editor of Chronicles of Culture.

Andy Warhol: (Andy Warhola) 1928-1987. Painter and commercial illustrator. Most well known for the Campbell's Soup Cans painting. Vist the Warhol Foundation.

Korczak Ziolkowski: sculptor, creator of the statue of Crazy Horse in the Dakota Black Hills, member of the team of artists that carved heads of presidents in Mt. Rushmore.


Steve Bartkowski: quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons. The team was really bad, but he was good.

Frank "Red" Dobrowolski: solid baseball player in the 1930's and 40's. Infielder deluxe.

Wladyslaw Dobrowolski: A member of the 1934 World Champion fencing team from Poland.

Whitey Ford: Major League Baseball player. Edward "Whitey" Ford was the "money pitcher" on the great Yankee teams of the 1950s and early 1960s, earning him the moniker "Chairman of the Board." The wily southpaw's lifetime record of 236-106 gives him the best winning percentage (.690) of any 20th century pitcher.

Ron Jaworski: quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles, led them to the 1980 Super Bowl, and now a comentator on ESPN.

Ted Kluszewski: Major League Baseball player. 1B 1947-61 Reds, Pirates, White Sox, Angels. He led the NL with 49 homers and 141 RBI in 1954 and averaged 43 HRs and 116 RBIs from 1953 to 1956. He also hit .300 seven times. In 1955 he led in hits (192) and set a modern NL record by scoring runs in 17 straight games.

Stan Musial: Major League Baseball player (St. Louis Cardinals), Sportsman of 1957, Baseball Player of the Decade 1946-56

Moose Skowron: Major League Baseball first baseman from 1954-1967. A powerful opposite-field hitter, he topped the .300 mark five times with New York Yankees and he became a hero of the 1958 World Series versus the Braves.

Carl Yastrzemski: professional american baseball player. He had an excellent 23-year career, playing only for the Boston Red Sox. His best year was in 1967, when he won the American League Triple Crown, with an average of .326, 44 home runs and 126 rbi....more...



Great Thinkers

Mieczyslaw Haiman: historian, the first curator of the Polish Museum of America in Chicago.

Movie and Television Stars

Pola Negri: actress, star of many films in the early era of Hollywood.

Political Leaders and Politicians

Zbigniew Brzezinski: professor of political science, National Security Advisor in President Carter Administration.(1977-1981)

Jan Karski: diplomat and professor of political science, author of the report concerning conditions in the Warsaw Ghetto and concentration camps in the early World War II, who tried to bring to the attention of unwilling to listen Allied governments and societies the atrocities committed by Germans in Europe.

Tadeusz Kosciuszko: potitical leader and philosopher, brilliant military strategist, the Revolutionary War hero (built West Point).

Edmund Muskie-Marciszewski: U.S. Senator from Maine, Democratic candidate in the presidential elections of 1968 and 1972.

Lech Walesa: Some average polish worker who organized a labor movement in Poland.

Religious Leaders

Jan Krol: the first Polish American Cardinal (from Philadelphia).

Pope John Paul II: John Paul II is The Pope.The leader of the catholic church and one of the most well known and powerful people in the world.

Scientists and Engineers

Mieczyslaw G. Bekker: scientist, built the first vehicle used on the moon, the moon rover used by Apollo 15 in 1971.

Stanislaw Burzynski: physician, cancer specialist.

Nicholas Copernicus: Polish astonomer who lived between 1473-1543. He was born in Torun, Poland to a middle class family. He attended school at Krakaw and eventually moved on to Italy where he received a degree in mathematical science. Before his time, people believed in the Ptolemaic model of the solar system, which maintained that the Earth was the center of the universe. Unfortunately, this model was inadequate at predicting the positions of the planets. In 1543, Copernicus started a scientific revolution when he published the heliocentric theory, in which all the planets, including Earth, revolved around the sun. He also introduced a full mathematical system that could accurately calculate the positions of the planets at any given time.

Madame Curie: she and her husband discovered some really cool stuff about atoms. She died of cancer after over-exposure to X-Rays. The dangers of x-rays were not know until many years after x-rays were discovered.

Bronislaw Malinowski: anthropologist, one of the founders of cultural anthropology, famous for his research in Trobriand Islands.

Ralph Modjeski: engineer, specialized in building bridges (f.e. Thebes Bridge over Mississippi, Delaware River Bridge, Trans-Bay Bridge in San Francisco, Blue Water Bridge in Michigan). He built numerous other bridges across America, from Alaska to the Gulf of Mexico.

Tadeusz Sendzimir: engineer, author of over 50 inventions in mining and metallurgy.

Stanislaw Ulam: mathematician, co-creator of the atomic bomb and Hydrogen bomb.

Florian Znaniecki: sociologist, co-author of The Polish Peasant in Europe and America 1918-1920 considered the foundation of modern empirical sociology

War Heroes and Warriors

Wladimir B. Krzyzanowski: soldier, organized Polish Legion that fought in the Civil War, the first governor of Alaska.

Kazimierz Pulaski: soldier, the Revolutionary War hero, Father of the American Cavalry.


Ted Kazynski: The unabomber.