The Palace of the Sierakowski Family in Waplewo Wielkie

Waplewo lies within the former Rassinen field which took the name of Wapils in 1376. Its owner, according to 15th-Century registers, was Segenand von Wapils, a knight of the Teutonic Order known for his diplomatic and political work. Around 1483 the land went to the hands of the Rabe family, with the Blackbird coats of arms. Presumably at that time the first manor was established in Waplewo, and historical sources confirm there was a garden here. In 1611, the Waplewo real estate passed into the ownership of the Niemojewski family, Rolicz coats of arms, and then, in 1641, to Count Jan Biberstein-Zawadzki, Rogala coats of arms, a distaff relative of the house of Vasa.
Zawadzki served under King Sigismond III Vasa and later held the office of Chamberlain at the court of Władysław IV. He had the honour to receive, on behalf of Władysław, an oath of allegiance to the Polish King from the Gdańsk Municipality. Zawadzki also erected a brick manor in Waplewo, the contours of which have survived to this day. In compliance with 17th-Century trends, the manor was designed as a low, one-storey structure with side doors imitating olliers. After Zawadzkis, Waplewo fell to the family of Chełstowski, and then, in 1726, to Bagniewski, the Buffalo coat of arms. With the second marriage of the Bagniewski widow, the Waplewo property changed ownership to the house of Sierakowski, with the Ogończyk coats of arms.
In 1888, the Sierakowski family expanded the manor, granting it palace characteristics. A bit earlier, in the last quarter of the 18th Century, Waplewo gained a beautiful landscape park which at that time included a classic row of lindens along the manor’s extended axis. The property remained with its owners until World War II, to be taken over by the State Breeding Centre. In the 1970’s the facility underwent major renovation. In November 2006, the palace and park complex in Waplewo went under the administration of the National Museum in Gdańsk, and became a base of its division – the Museum of the Tradition of Polish Nobility.
The Pomeranian Centre for Contacts with the Polish Community Abroad.
The manor was constructed on a rectangle, the longer side of which, from the east, received two wings in the form of olliers, giving the entire structure the shape of letter C. Seen from the front, it gives the impression of a modest, one-storey building with a break in the middle and two lower, side, wings. The rear section, having been reconstructed in the neoclassical style, acquired antique qualities – it is a storied structure, with the additional floor crowned with a triangle jerkin head and acroteria, supported by slender columns which cover the balcony. Once the manor joined the impressive winter garden from the park side – the Sierakowski family was famous for its collector’s passion, also in the field of botany. In the following years, this orangery became a residential annexe.

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