The mystery of a millionairess

Cinderella or Snow Queen? Who was the most famous American millionairess of Polish origin? We invite for a meeting with Ewa Winnicka, the author of the book A Millionaire. The Mystery of Barbara Piasecka-Johnson, which will be held on June, 10. The interview will be conducted by Dorota Karaś.

“If I come back, only by Rolls-Royce”, she says to her friends in the fall of 1967 and leaves Poland. When a few years later she visits the homeland is already married to a more than forty years older tycoon of the beauty industry. And she is a millionaire, too.

Who was Barbara Piasecka Johnson? A great collector loving her husband and a philanthropist or a cunning woman only after money? A benefactor who wanted to save the collapsing Gdańsk Shipyard, or a capricious rich woman with continuous attacks of fury? Is it a tale about contemporary Cinderella or never compromising Snow Queen? And finally: what kind of life can expect a person who gets rich overnight?

Citing stories of long-time employees, servants and friends of the Johnsons, Ewa Winnicka shows their everyday life behind the gate of the residence. From poor Polish immigrants to one of the most famous families, who, despite the wealth, did not manage to avoid scandals and misery – the reporter shows how surprisingly the American Dream may sometimes come true.

Ewa Winnicka is the author of books approved by both readers and critics, in which she describes Polish emigration – as is the case wi

th The Londoners and The Brits. She was awarded with Grand Press reward twice (in 2005 and 2008) for articles on social subjects. Nominated for the NIKE Literary Award, Gryfia Literary Award winner in 2015.


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