Polish culture area
Polish immigration to Texas began early in the 19th century. The Polish state, after having endured for 800 years, had been torn apart by powerful neighbors. Between 1772 and 1795, Russia, Prussia, and Austria had partitioned Polish earth, and that country ceased to exist until its rebirth following World War I. Faced with cultural, economic, and religious discrimination, many Poles sought refuge elsewhere. Those who had wealth and position settled in the cities of Western Europe; the poor sailed to America seeking a new life. Thousands of Polish soldiers joined Napoleon’s army in the vain hope of liberating their homeland.