Our history

The Polish Library in Washington was founded in 1991 by a group of volunteers led by Tadeusz Walendowski. The aim is to serve local Polish community and also to promote Polish culture to a wider audience. In addition to lending books and films, the Library is involved in many activities, including film screenings, lectures and concerts. It organizes two major annual events: Polish Christmas Carols at the Polish Embassy and a Picnic, which takes place in one of the local parks. The Library collaborates with other groups and institutions in organizing cultural events. Over the years the Library’s collection grew to over 7,000 books and 300 DVDs. In addition to materials in Polish it offers a sizeable collection of books in English. Its membership includes over 300 individuals and families. It publishes the newsletter Polish Library News which includes information about Polish events in the area, books and film reviews, and interviews. In 2007, in memory of one of its founders, the Library established Tadeusz Walendowski Award. Thanks to the generosity of the Polish Embassy, the Library occupies the basement of Polish Economic Mission at Dupont Circle. The reading room, in addition to books and DVDs, includes a selection of Polish magazines. The Library welcomes everyone interested in Polish affairs and promotes integration of the Polish community in Washington area.