Castle and Manor Farm Krzyzowa
During the Second World War, the so-called House on the Hill, owned by Helmut James von Moltke, was the venue for meetings of the Kreisau Circle, a German resistance movement opposing the policy of Adolf Hitler. On 12 November 1989, a Reconciliation Mass took place here, where the German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and the Polish Prime Minister Tadeusz Mazowiecki took part.
History of Castle and Manor Farm Krzyzowa
The Baroque palace was erected in ca. 1720 and modified in the years 1868-1869 and 1891-1900. The building was the property of the von Moltke family from 1867, when General Helmut Karl von Moltke, the chief strategist of Prussia in wars with Denmark (in 1864), Austria (in 1866), and France (1870-1871) purchased it. After 1945, the palace and the farm — used by a state-owned agricultural farm — fell into ruin. Reconstruction works were carried out in the years 1992-1994. The building was to be used as a conference center managed by the “Krzyzowa” Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe.
Description of Castle and Manor Farm Krzyzowa
The complex is on the south side of the main road running through Krzyzowa. On the east, it adjoins a park, separated from it by a distributary of the Piława River. The palace, built on a rectangular floor plan, has rectangular avant-corpses containing staircases on the side facades and smaller avant-corpses on the north-east facade facing the garden. The two-storied structure, with a plinth of a tall basement at the bottom, is covered with a mansard roof. The façades feature Neo-Baroque details, rusticated lesenes, and simple window surrounds. On the south-west facade, there is a Late-Baroque stone portal with diagonal pilasters and composite columns, a broken-line cornice, and a cartouche with a coat of arms of the owners. Stairs with a forged balustrade with lanterns lead to the entrance. On the garden facade, between the side avant-corpses, there is a balcony on rusticated, rectangular piers.
There is a Late-Baroque broken-line cornice segment above the glazed, round-arched balcony door. Between the palace and the Piłava River, there is a terrace with a balustrade. The palace has two bays, with a central hallway and a representative staircase; in the west corner, there is a ball room with stucco decorations, a Baroque ceramic oven, and two fireplaces. In the staircase, there are two battle paintings: French troops plundering Lubeka in 1806 and Prussian troops welcomed by the citizens of Paris in 1871 (Lipinsky, 1900). The rooms of the palace used to house an exhibition on the Kreisau Circle. There is a farmyard in front of the palace, nearly rectangular in shaped, enclosed with utility buildings (five residential buildings, stables, a sheepfold-cowshed, a granary, a barn, a carriage house, and an entrance gate in the north-east corner). The farm buildings mostly come from the first half of the 19th century. They were later modified.
To the south of the complex, there is a reconstructed decorative garden divided into quarters, surrounded by a wall with four decorative gates, on the axis of which two intersecting roads were laid out. In the north-east corner, the complex borders the stone Church of St Michael the Archangel, surrounded by a wall. To the north-east of the complex, on Wzgórze Kapliczne (the Chapel Hill) there is a cemetery with graves of the von Moltke family.
The historic monument is accessible. The “Krzyzowa” Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe owns the complex. The manor farm, the alley, the park, and the family cemetery is open for visitors without limitations. The palace is open for visitors (for free). The buildings of the complex have different functions and not all of them are available.