Adam Gurowski

Biography of Adam Gurowski

Count Adam Gurowski (10 September 1805; 4 May 1866) was a Polish-born author who emigrated to the United States in 1849. He was born in the palatinate of Kalisz, Poland and died in Washington D.C.

He was a son of the Count Ladislas Gurowski, who was an ardent admirer of Kosciusko, and who lost the greater part of his estates through having participated in the insurrection of 1794. Having been expelled in 1818, and again in 1819, from the gymnasia of Warsaw and Kalisz for revolutionary demonstrations, young Gurowski continued his studies at various German universities.

Returning to Warsaw in 1825, he became identified with those opposed to Russian influence, and was in consequence several times imprisoned. He was active in organizing the November Uprising of 1830, in which he afterward took part. On its suppression, he escaped to France, where he lived for several years,associated with the Saint-Simonians, and adopted many of the views of Charles Fourier. He was also a member of the national Polish committee in Paris, and became conspicuous in political and literary circles. His estates had meantime been confiscated and he himself condemned to death.

But in 1835 he published a work entitled La vérité sur la Russie, in which he advocated a union of the different branches of the Slavic race. The book being favorably regarded by the Russian government, Gurowski was recalled, and, although his estates were not restored, he was employed in the civil service. In 1844, finding that he had many powerful enemies at court, he left secretly for Berlin and went thence to Heidelberg. Here he gave himself to study, and for two years lectured on political economy in the University of Bern, Switzerland. He then went to Italy.

In 1849 he came to the United States, where he engaged in literary pursuits and became deeply interested in American politics. He wrote articles for the American Cyclopaedia and worked on the editorial staff of the New York Tribune. During the Crimean War, he sided with Russia, and his editorials and pamphlets were an effective influence on American public opinion in favor of Russia. He was much opposed to slavery.

From 1861 until 1863, he was translator in the state department at Washington, being acquainted with eight languages. In 1862, the first volume of his Diary was published which, except for Edwin M. Stanton, was highly critical of officials in the Lincoln administration.

He married Theresa de Ibijewska in 1827. They had two children, and she died in 1832.

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