For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
July 18, 2002
Mrs. Bush's Remarks at Polish American Center with Madam Jolanta Kwasniewska
Polish American Center
I am delighted to be in Philadelphia with Madam Jolanta Kwasniewska, the First Lady of Poland.
This city is the home of our nation's founding fathers, who crafted the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution here, and Philadelphia is home to half a million Americans of Polish decent. So it is the perfect place to bring Madame Kwasniewska, because our cultures form a beautiful collage here.
The United States and Poland have much in common. Our relationship can be traced back to 18th Century Philadelphia, to the friendship of Thomas Jefferson and Thaddeus Kosciuszko.
Kosciuszko was a Polish-born American Revolutionary War hero. Thomas Jefferson called him "As pure a son of liberty as I have ever known."
We just toured the Thaddeus Kosciuszko House. He is perhaps best known for his very clever plan to stretch a 60-ton chain across the Hudson River at West Point to block invading British ships. It worked. Kosciuszko, a proven military engineer, went on to lead American troops in the Revolution.
After the war Congress honored Brigadier General Kosciuszko for his "meritorious service." You'll find his statue in Lafayette Park, in front of the White House. President Bush and I hosted the President and First Lady of Poland at the White House yesterday.
Our next stop is the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
The First Lady of Poland is a strong advocate for women and children who cares deeply about families in her country.and, like me, she loves the beautiful expression of art in our lives and culture.
I'm delighted to introduce my friend, the First Lady of Poland. Ladies and gentlemen, Madam Kwasniewska.
# # #