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2015 | 24 | 2(47) | 195-220

Article title

Dr Stanisław Czarniecki (1921-2013), geolog, historyk nauki, bibliofil i działacz społeczny. Wspomnienia i refleksje

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Dr. Stanisław Czarniecki (1921–2013) Geologist, historian of science and a worker for voluntary causes

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Stanisław Czarniecki was connected with book and publishing cooperative movement from his youth. During that time he gained the knowledge of old scientific books and acquired habits of voluntary worker. He studied geology at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków (1950-1955) and already then became professionally attached to the Geological-Stratigraphic laboratory of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Kraków. He specialized in research in deposits of early paleozoic. In 1964 at the Jagiellonian University, under the supervision of Prof. Marian Książkiewicz, Stanisław Czarniecki completed his doctoral thesis on this subject, presenting the dissertation entitled: Sedimentary envionment and stratigrafical position of the treskeloden beds (Vestspitsbergen) (printed in 1969). Already during his studies he began advanced research in the history of geology, mainly of the Kraków centre. His research concerned Ludwik Zajszneg (1805-1971), a well-known researcher of Carpathian mountains and Polish highland, as well as Stanisław Staszic (1755-1871). To the latter he devoted his first publication concerning vocabulary in his book of 1815: O ziemiorodztwie Karpatów i innych gór i równin Polski. One of his last books is Pokłosie staszicowskie of 2009. Stanisław Czarniecki conducted parallel geological field works and historical studies. as a historian, he mainly dealt with biographical writings and published his articles, i.a. in Polski Słownik Biograficzny and Dictionary of scientific biography. He published a lot also in national and foreign press, including materials for the International Congress of the History of Science. at the first Congress with his participation in 1965 in Warsaw, held in the museum of the earth of the Polish Academy of Sciences (where meetings of its geological section were taking place), he put on an exhibition Polska kartografia geologiczna przed 1919 r. [Polish geological cartography], which became the first synthesis of the issue. As a voluntary social worker, he devoted his work to saving cultural heritage, especially old books. The recovered volumes were usually handed over to museums and scientific libraries. He conducted a wide-scale campaign providing polish schools and even prisons with books. his knowledge about old prints was disseminated through exhibitions, especially in schools, libraries, museums and community centres. To make the exhibitions more varied, he added works of art with the support of an artist, Zbylut Grzywacz. In Kraków he founded a private laboratory of the History of Polish Geology and opened it to those interested. He was one of the most active participants of the Staszic meetings in Piła, the place of Staszic’s birth, where he sought to maintain his name as „father of polish geology”. He was of the opinion that Staszic’s conduct ancillary to his country through organic work was an optimal life pattern for generations of Poles, not only in politically difficult times. Stanisław Czarniecki was a member of the international Committee of the History of Geological Sciences (INHIGEO) from its creation in Yerevan in 1967.


  • Towarzystwo Naukowe Warszawskie


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Publication order reference


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