Ignace Jan Paderewski


On the 15 fennigi stamp of the Republic of Poland in its last issue of 1919 appears the face of Paderewski, whose unusual career at once attracts attention and admiration of all.  It is probably the only instance in history where a noted musician has been honored with his picture on a postage stamp, although of course it was not his fame in that line which prompted his country to so honor him.

Paderewski was born in Podolia, Russian Poland, on November 6th 1860. He was nominated Professor of Music in the Warsaw Conservatory at the early age of eighteen.  He also held a Professorship at the conservatory at Strasburg but his favorite line of musical endeavor was that of a pianist.  As a pianist he made his debut in 1887, and his fame spread rapidly until the whole world soon paid him its homage as one of the greatest pianists who ever lived.

Probably every musical centre of the knows him as a musician, but during the troublous days of the World War he turned his talents to other laudable things, that of helping his distressed country to throw off the yoke of servitude imposed by Germany, Austria and Russia.  He toured the American Continent for funds to help the distressed people of his native land and to further their cause for liberty.  When the German army was heing cleared of Poland he returned there and it was probably more to his wisdom and skill in statecraft that the Republic was so successfully organized.  He served as its first Premier and held the ship of state at the most crucial period of its history and acquitted himself with a capability which shows him to be equally skilled in statesmanship as in the manipulation of the keys of a piano.

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