Olsztyn – Upper Gate

The city’s Upper Gate, which is the only gateway which remains from the old city wall network which Olsztyn once had.

The portcullis, with the remains of ‘the neck’ brickwork also visible, which was a defensive measure to ensure that any attacker would have to funnel in towards the gate.

The inside of the city gate. The building was used as a prison in the nineteenth century and it was nearly demolished when it was no longer needed for that purpose. It was saved though by using it as a fire station and it has since been used as offices and now is in use as a hotel.

Excavations have taken place in front of the gate to show some of the former defensive works, which included a bridge over a moated area. The gate and the surrounding fortifications date from the fourteenth century, although the building itself was much modified in the nineteenth century.

Wojciech Kętrzyński was an historian who specialised on Polish studies, at a time when it wasn’t seen as politically appropriate to do so. He is now seen as a national Polish hero and this plaque marks the time when he was imprisoned in the gate for his role in the 1863 January Uprising against Russia.