1914 - The formation of the Silesian Legion
The outbreak of the First World War awakened hope for Poland's regaining its independence. Two Legions, formed in Galicia, with time were joined by the Silesian legion, organized in Cieszyn Silesia. Hieronim Przepiliński and Jan Łysek, teachers from Cieszyn, responded to the call of Józef Piłsudski. Based on the Sokół Polish Gymnastic Association, which operated in Cieszyn Silesia, they called volunteers to Cieszyn and in Sikora Park in today’s Český Těšín, they organized a Silesian legion, also called the Cieszyn legion. On September 21, 1914, the legion in the strength of two companies (about 380 people), bid farewell by crowds of Cieszyn residents, marched out and headed to Mszana Dolna, where it was joined with the Second Brigade of Polish Legions. Cieszyn legionnaires along with the Second Brigade fought on the Eastern Front with Russian troops in Ukraine, Romania and Hungary. During the fighting about 70 legionnaires were killed, including Jan Łysek, and 30 were taken prisoner.