Udział Polaków w budowie i organizacji Kolei Wschodniochińskiej. Wspomnienia inż. Stefana Offenberga
The participation of Poles in the construction and organization of the Chinese Eastern Railway. Reminiscence of Stefan Offenberg
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In the end of the 19th century political situation in the Far East was tense and uncertain. China being afraid of the repeated Japanese aggression signed the agreement with Russia allowing to establish a Russian military naval base at Port Arthur (close to today’s Dalian) and agreed for the construction of Chinese Eastern Railway through the territory of Manchuria. This railway was dedicated to connect the Transsiberian Railway with Vladivostok, the Russian port on the coast of the Pacific Ocean. At the early stage of the history of the Chinese Eastern Railway many Polish engineers held important positions in the railway construction administration with Stanisław Kierbedz as its vice-chairman and manager. Adam Szydlowski, who was the founder of Harbin, held the main position in the railway administration. Among the management of the 21 sections of the railway the majority were Polish engineers, former constructors of Transsiberian Railway. The author cites some fragments of the reminiscences of one of these engineers – Stefan Offenberg, who was in Manchuria at the time of Boxer Uprising. These reminiscences were included into a very rare album, published in Harbin in 1923 on the 25th anniversary of the Chinese Eastern Railway (on the eve of its factual overtaking by the Soviet authorities).
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