‘Oy u luzi chervona kalyna’: Origins of the Sich Riflemen song

“Oy u luzi chervona kalyna” (Ой у лузі червона калина) is one of the most well-known Ukrainian folk songs, and it has experienced renewed popularity due to the full-scale Russian invasion. The lyrics are over 100 years old, yet they can just as easily be applied to the events of […]

Finding Solidarity with Ukraine: 12 Ways Kraków and Lviv Are Connected via Their Historical Built Environment

Kraków has become my temporary wartime home. When Russia began it full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, I made the difficult decision to leave my home in Lviv and depart for Poland. I didn’t know how long I would be gone or where I would end up; but […]

Hungarian-soldiers

‘Ked’ my pryshla karta’: An Austro-Hungarian Recruit Song

“Ked’ my pryshla karta” (Кедь ми прийшла карта) is a folk ballad from the Lemko region (Lemkovyna or Lemkivshchyna), a mountainous territory that stretches along the present-day borders of Ukraine, Poland, and Slovakia. The area that today belongs to Poland and Ukraine was a part of Galicia until WWI, while […]

Country of Roxolania: Ukrainian Women in the First World War

By Mariana Baidak for Lokalna Istoriya (original in Ukrainian) “Out of my love for Ukraine, I took a rifle and went to the field to beat the enemy with physical force,” said Olena Stepaniv, the most famous Ukrainian military woman, more than 100 years ago. Since then, the issue of […]

A Look at 1920s Galicia: Photographs of Daily Life in the Countryside

Below is a collection of photographs that depict daily life in the Galician countryside in the 1920s. The photographs were found on eBay by German collector Wolfgang Wiggers, who subsequently published them on his Flickr page. At the time the photographs were taken, Galicia was part of interwar Poland. All […]

How to Teach a Bear to Play the Flute: The Fairy-Tale World of Oleksa Bakhmatiuk

By Oleksandr Simchuk for Amnesia Master tilemaker Oleksa Bakhmatiuk (1820-1882) is the most famous representative of the Kosiv school of ceramics and perhaps the most successful Ukrainian artist of the nineteenth century. A lion playing with a wheel, a bear on the flute warming up a violinist, street artists dancing […]

Architectural Styles of Galician Railway Station Buildings (1856-1914)

A look at some of the different architectural styles used for passenger railway station buildings across Galicia, from the time of the first railway line (1856-1861) to World War I (1914). 1856-1861: The First Galician Railway | Gothic Revival Lviv’s very first railway station was constructed in 1861 for the […]

‘Czerwony Pas’ & ‘Verkhovyno’: The Story of a Polish and Ukrainian ‘Folk’ Song

Today, both the Poles and Ukrainians have a beloved song about the Hutsul Carpathian highlanders, sung in their own languages to a similar melody. How did this come to be? The Polish Story Karpaccy Górale We must first look back at the first half of the nineteenth century. This is […]

Capturing Ternopil in its Historical Architectural Details

Architectural detail is found everywhere, from the defining shape of a doorknob and the waves created by a balustrade to the winding form of a staircase and the rounded culmination of a handrail. It is in these details that we can see the thoughtfulness, care, time, and skill that was […]

Lviv’s Austrian-Era Municipal Cemeteries

Everyone has heard of Lviv’s Lychakiv Cemetery — not only is it well-known among locals, but it is also one of the city’s main tourist attractions. The beautiful sculptures, winding paths, and prominent figures buried here attract a constant flow of crowds. Though not nearly as popular, Yaniv Cemetery is […]