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Story & Puzzle: Can we identify this military leader based on family story about Poland's second partition?

25 Apr 2015 #1
I have a puzzle wrapped up in a story handed down through the family of my 94 year old friend, Paul. I am not well versed in Polish history so I'm hoping someone here might be able to provide information that could help point us in the right direction. We might be able to find a few more details if it helps, but this is the story goes as follows:

At the end of the second partitioning (maybe 3rd) there was a mid-high ranking Polish military commander who refused to have his troops surrender/stop fighting. As a result, a bounty (of some sort) was put on his head and he eventually escaped the country on the underside of a cart with the help of a family they had traded with. After 6 months in hiding, he assumed this families name under the guise that he was a distant cousin who had just arrived. He subsequently immigrated to the U.S., but in fear of retaliation the family never spoke his old name to anyone.

The military commander in question would be my Paul's great great great grandfather. The last person to know the original family name was his Paul's grandmother. As a kid at the side of her deathbed, Paul remembers his father pleading with her to please tell him the name. Even at this point she refused and seemingly this piece of their history went with her. As a prolific reader of history now nearing the end of his own life, Paul too would like to be able to know his great-great-great-grandfather's original name and anything he can learn about him. If anyone can help or provide specific direction we would both be very grateful.
Looker - | 1,134
27 Apr 2015 #2
94 year old friend, Paul

Paul's great great great grandfather

If the time frame I calculated is right, then this military commander fought during so called November Uprising or maybe the Kraków Uprising.

Here are the members of the November Uprising leadership:

The Krakow Uprising wiki page:

The another possibility is also the 'Revolution of 1848' in Poland:ów#Wiosna_Lud.C3.B3w_na_ziemiach_polskich

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