Kaunas central post office
(Survived
, k.k.v.r.
1133
)
<p style="text-align: justify;">The object may be considered one of the key representative buildings of the interwar period in Kaunas. It is also the most significant building of interesting functional type (apart from this post office, a number of other monumental post office buildings built in Lithuanian cities in the 1930s deserve a special mention as well: Raseiniai (1934), Šiauliai (1938), Šančiai (1935), etc.). The beginning of construction of the post office is associated with 1930, which was designated as the Year of Vytautas the Great (even though the ideas on the need of such a building were expressed as far back as 1924): "The projection on the right features a plaque with both sides of the medal of Vytautas the Great containing an inscription in golden letters which says what determined the construction of the building in 1930-1931." The architect of the building Feliksas Vizbaras was then a senior inspector at the Ministry of Transport and Communications (in fact, Gaigalis, the engineer of the Construction Division of the Post Office Board, had prepared the central post office project some time before).</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">The building designed at the time, when the global economic crisis had not yet gained momentum, does not only distinguish by the combination of elements of modernism and "national style" but also a rather luxurious interior (the construction of the post office cost approximately 1,500,000 litas; other 250,000 litas was spent for decorations and facilities). It should be noted that like a number of other constructions of that time, it could not happen without certain scandals. For instance, the periodical <em>Paštininkų žodis </em>noted that "a number of old bricks were used in certain chief walls. Perhaps it is provided for in the contract with contractors, if not - someone will benefit from it". The interwar press included a number of rather bitter feedbacks of post office employees on the functionality of the building. It was even assumed that "the building was first erected and then it was adjusted to the post office. Such manifestations create a rather sad impression". In Soviet times, the interior of the post office underwent certain modifications: "In 1978-1980, the upper windows of the hall were glazed with stained-glass, the walls were veneered, the lobby was covered with dolomite plates; the layout of certain office spaces was changed."       </p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Even though today the curved striped windows make us consider the building to be one of the predecessors of Lithuanian functionalism, Feliksas Vizbaras primarily saw his building as the example of "national style", where, among other things, "a tie woven by some unknown devotional weaver from Skapiškis" was used in its décor. Even the principles of modernism - "when designing the building, the author adhered to the requirements of contemporary modern construction in the project: more space and light, clear division of apartments, avoidance of unnecessary architectural decorations as they are called" - are associated with the objective inherent in the Lithuanian character "to have a clear situation in front of us". The interior of the post office abounds in the works of the most well-known artists of the day: "The top of the hall is adorned with the stamps of Vilnius, Grodno and Klaipėda and three paintings by the artist Šimonis, where the central painting pictures a Lithuanian girl with a shield featuring the <em>Vytis </em>and the Gediminas Hill in the distance. Below, 103 Lithuanian stamps by the artist Kalpokas encircle the entire hall."</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;">Despite the decorative aspect, the building became the benchmark of modern construction in the society of the time. A multi-storey building (four storeys and a basement) equipped with modern elevators, spacious operations hall, convenient working conditions (even the showers were installed for the convenience of employees), an electricity-driven clock mounted in the main façade in 1935 had become one of the key architectural highlights in the temporary capital. It is interesting that the staircase near the central post office has remained an important urban attraction. Hence, the post office displays a particularly close link between the ideas of modern architecture and the then-active thoughts of "national style". It is one of the most organic combinations of the two ideological engines of the interwar architecture - modernity and nationality.</p>
<p style="text-align: justify;"><em>Vaidas Petrulis</em></p>
Adresas: Kauno m. sav., Kauno m., Laisvės al. 102
Architektūros tipas: Professional
Architektai: Feliksas Vizbaras
Metai: 1930
Laikotarpis: Interwar
Architektūros šakos: Architecture, Separate building, Transport / Communication, Post office
Medžiagos: Masonry (brick)
Nuotraukos: 51
Susiję objektai
Telšiai Žemaitė (Former M. Valančius) Gymnasium
Telšiai Žemaitė (Former M. Valančius) Gymnasium
1935 - 1936
Dormitory for the victims of war
Dormitory for the victims of war
1934 - 1935
Jonas Vileišis House in Kaunas
Jonas Vileišis House in Kaunas
1930
Former office of  "Pažanga" company
Former office of "Pažanga" company
1933 - 1934
M. Bruskienė Residential House in Kaunas
M. Bruskienė Residential House in Kaunas
1932 - 1933
Kaunas County Municipality Palace
Kaunas County Municipality Palace
1932 - 1934
Borisas Goldbergas Residential House in Kaunas
Borisas Goldbergas Residential House in Kaunas
1937
Vatican Diplomatic Mission (Nunciature) in Kaunas
Vatican Diplomatic Mission (Nunciature) in Kaunas
1930 - 1931
Residential House of Artist A. Žmuidzinavičius
Residential House of Artist A. Žmuidzinavičius
1928
Apartment House of Company “Butas” in Kaunas
Apartment House of Company “Butas” in Kaunas
1931 - 1932
Antanas Gylys Hospital Building
Antanas Gylys Hospital Building
1932 - 1934
J. Papečkys Residential House in Kaunas
J. Papečkys Residential House in Kaunas
1937
Petras Mačiulis Residential House in Kaunas
Petras Mačiulis Residential House in Kaunas
1935 - 1936
Christ's Resurrection Church in Kaunas
Christ's Resurrection Church in Kaunas
1933 - 1940
Juozas Tūbelis Villa (now Kaunas Art Gymnasium)
Juozas Tūbelis Villa (now Kaunas Art Gymnasium)
1933
Cinema theater "Romuva"
Cinema theater "Romuva"
1938 - 1940
Elementary School for Jewish Children in Kaunas
Elementary School for Jewish Children in Kaunas
1930 - 1931
Sports Hall in Kaunas
Sports Hall in Kaunas
1938 - 1939
Hotel "Lietuva" in Kaunas
Hotel "Lietuva" in Kaunas
1925
Č. Pacevičius Villa
Č. Pacevičius Villa
1935
Residential House of Architect Stasys Kudokas
Residential House of Architect Stasys Kudokas
1937
Officers club Ramovė
Officers club Ramovė
1931 - 1937
Agriculture Bank in Kaunas (now KTU Central Administration Building)
Agriculture Bank in Kaunas (now KTU Central Administration Building)
1933 - 1935
Palace for Firefighters in Kaunas
Palace for Firefighters in Kaunas
1929 - 1930
Grigorijus Gumeniukas Residential House (Adapted to Kaunas 3rd Gymnasium)
Grigorijus Gumeniukas Residential House (Adapted to Kaunas 3rd Gymnasium)
1934 - 1935
The House of Architect Antanas Jokimas
The House of Architect Antanas Jokimas
1925
Evangelical and Reformed Church in Kaunas
Evangelical and Reformed Church in Kaunas
1937 - 1947
Health Insurance Fund
Health Insurance Fund
1933 - 1935
The Palace of the Common Labourers in Kaunas
The Palace of the Common Labourers in Kaunas
1938 - 1939
Palace of Physical Education
Palace of Physical Education
1932 - 1934
Palace of Klaipeda Pedagogic Institute’s Sports and Gymnastics
Palace of Klaipeda Pedagogic Institute’s Sports and Gymnastics
1937 - 1938
Ragutis Factory Apartment House
Ragutis Factory Apartment House
1922 - 1923
Funicular of Žaliakalnis
Funicular of Žaliakalnis
1931
Elementary School (now Jonas Jablonskis Gymnasium) in Kaunas
Elementary School (now Jonas Jablonskis Gymnasium) in Kaunas
1931
Jonas and Gediminas Lapėnai Apartment House
Jonas and Gediminas Lapėnai Apartment House
1932
The headquarter of milk processing company "Pienocentras"
The headquarter of milk processing company "Pienocentras"
1931 - 1934
Commerce, Industry and Crafts palace
Commerce, Industry and Crafts palace
1937 - 1939
A garage of Amerikos lietuvių prekybos akcinė bendrovė company
A garage of Amerikos lietuvių prekybos akcinė bendrovė company
1929 - 1932
Office of the Bank of Lithuania in Kėdaniai
Office of the Bank of Lithuania in Kėdaniai
1931 - 1932
Office of Former Insurance Company Lloyd
Office of Former Insurance Company Lloyd
1938
Former „Tulpė“ Cooperative House
Former „Tulpė“ Cooperative House
1925
Simonas Volpertas Private Clinic in Šiauliai
Simonas Volpertas Private Clinic in Šiauliai
1930
Former Frida Arkusienė Residential House
Former Frida Arkusienė Residential House
1939
Gymnasium named after Petras Vileišis in Pasvalys (former School of Commerce)
Gymnasium named after Petras Vileišis in Pasvalys (former School of Commerce)
1933 - 1935
Residential Houses at 83 and 85 Laisvės Av. in Kaunas
Residential Houses at 83 and 85 Laisvės Av. in Kaunas
1931 - 1940
A project for Culture House in Kudirkos Naumiestis
A project for Culture House in Kudirkos Naumiestis
1939
Draft project for the Mother and Child Museum in Kaunas
Draft project for the Mother and Child Museum in Kaunas
1938
Mansion “Eglutė”
Mansion “Eglutė”
1929
Draft project for the Adelė and Paulius Galauniai House
Draft project for the Adelė and Paulius Galauniai House
1930
Jewish Gymnasium in Kaunas
Jewish Gymnasium in Kaunas
1931
Telšiai St. Nicholas Orthodox Church
Telšiai St. Nicholas Orthodox Church
1935 - 1937
Kaunas Church of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus
Kaunas Church of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus
1935 - 1938
Raseiniai Old Post Office
Raseiniai Old Post Office
1933 - 1934
House of Vladas Stankūnas in Kaunas, Savanoriu av. 58
House of Vladas Stankūnas in Kaunas, Savanoriu av. 58
1934
Kaunas German Upper Exact Sciences Gymnasium (now A. Puškinas Gymnasium)
Kaunas German Upper Exact Sciences Gymnasium (now A. Puškinas Gymnasium)
1923 - 1930
Juozas Daugirdas Apartment House
Juozas Daugirdas Apartment House
1930
House in Kaunas at 4 L. Sapiegos St.
House in Kaunas at 4 L. Sapiegos St.
1935
P. J. Krasauskas Residential House
P. J. Krasauskas Residential House
1938
Museum of Samogitians "Alka"
Museum of Samogitians "Alka"
1936 - 1941
Gymnasium in Kėdainiai
Gymnasium in Kėdainiai
1935 - 1944
Villa "Šilelis"
Villa "Šilelis"
1938 - 1939
Villa in Naglis st. 8
Villa in Naglis st. 8
Church of Karmėlava
Church of Karmėlava
1919
House of architect Feliksas Vizbaras in Kaunas
House of architect Feliksas Vizbaras in Kaunas
Mineral Baths Building of Doctar Jurgis Veckūnas in Aukštoji Panemunė
Mineral Baths Building of Doctar Jurgis Veckūnas in Aukštoji Panemunė
1930
The House in Kaunas, Vilnius st., no. 19
The House in Kaunas, Vilnius st., no. 19
1924
Residential house of Lidija Vaišvilienė and Olimpija Balsienė
Residential house of Lidija Vaišvilienė and Olimpija Balsienė
1939
Meilach Melamed house in kaunas
Meilach Melamed house in kaunas
1938 - 1939
House of Janina Rožanskienė
House of Janina Rožanskienė
1939
House of Dumbriai in Ukmergė
House of Dumbriai in Ukmergė
1933
Church in Biliakiemis
Church in Biliakiemis
1937 - 1940
Lithuanian Riflemen's Union house in Utena
Lithuanian Riflemen's Union house in Utena
1933
Mausha and Nathan Feinberg‘s house
Mausha and Nathan Feinberg‘s house
1929
House of Lionginas Junknevičius
House of Lionginas Junknevičius
1937
Meat Processing and Bacon Factory of “Maistas” company in Tauragė
Meat Processing and Bacon Factory of “Maistas” company in Tauragė
1931 - 1932
Former Petras Araminas primary school in Marijampolė
Former Petras Araminas primary school in Marijampolė
1934
Primary School in Alytus
Primary School in Alytus
1937
Branch of Lithuanian Bank in Biržai
Branch of Lithuanian Bank in Biržai
1934
Railway station in Plungė
Railway station in Plungė
1931 - 1932
Health Insurance Fund in Panevėžys
Health Insurance Fund in Panevėžys
1936 - 1937
Building of the Panevėžys District Municipality
Building of the Panevėžys District Municipality
1933
Former house of notary Jonas Dikinis in Raseiniai
Former house of notary Jonas Dikinis in Raseiniai
1933 - 1936
Former bus station in Raseiniai
Former bus station in Raseiniai
Raseiniai Primary School
Raseiniai Primary School
1933
House built by Teresė and Mykolas Narbutai
House built by Teresė and Mykolas Narbutai
1932
Kėdainiai County Municipal Hospital
Kėdainiai County Municipal Hospital
1935 - 1937
House built by Uršulė and Zigmas Starkai
House built by Uršulė and Zigmas Starkai
1933 - 1937
Primary school in Palemonas
Primary school in Palemonas
1935 - 1937
1 88

The object may be considered one of the key representative buildings of the interwar period in Kaunas. It is also the most significant building of interesting functional type (apart from this post office, a number of other monumental post office buildings built in Lithuanian cities in the 1930s deserve a special mention as well: Raseiniai (1934), Šiauliai (1938), Šančiai (1935), etc.). The beginning of construction of the post office is associated with 1930, which was designated as the Year of Vytautas the Great (even though the ideas on the need of such a building were expressed as far back as 1924): "The projection on the right features a plaque with both sides of the medal of Vytautas the Great containing an inscription in golden letters which says what determined the construction of the building in 1930-1931." The architect of the building Feliksas Vizbaras was then a senior inspector at the Ministry of Transport and Communications (in fact, Gaigalis, the engineer of the Construction Division of the Post Office Board, had prepared the central post office project some time before).


The building designed at the time, when the global economic crisis had not yet gained momentum, does not only distinguish by the combination of elements of modernism and "national style" but also a rather luxurious interior (the construction of the post office cost approximately 1,500,000 litas; other 250,000 litas was spent for decorations and facilities). It should be noted that like a number of other constructions of that time, it could not happen without certain scandals. For instance, the periodical Paštininkų žodis noted that "a number of old bricks were used in certain chief walls. Perhaps it is provided for in the contract with contractors, if not - someone will benefit from it". The interwar press included a number of rather bitter feedbacks of post office employees on the functionality of the building. It was even assumed that "the building was first erected and then it was adjusted to the post office. Such manifestations create a rather sad impression". In Soviet times, the interior of the post office underwent certain modifications: "In 1978-1980, the upper windows of the hall were glazed with stained-glass, the walls were veneered, the lobby was covered with dolomite plates; the layout of certain office spaces was changed."       


Even though today the curved striped windows make us consider the building to be one of the predecessors of Lithuanian functionalism, Feliksas Vizbaras primarily saw his building as the example of "national style", where, among other things, "a tie woven by some unknown devotional weaver from Skapiškis" was used in its décor. Even the principles of modernism - "when designing the building, the author adhered to the requirements of contemporary modern construction in the project: more space and light, clear division of apartments, avoidance of unnecessary architectural decorations as they are called" - are associated with the objective inherent in the Lithuanian character "to have a clear situation in front of us". The interior of the post office abounds in the works of the most well-known artists of the day: "The top of the hall is adorned with the stamps of Vilnius, Grodno and Klaipėda and three paintings by the artist Šimonis, where the central painting pictures a Lithuanian girl with a shield featuring the Vytis and the Gediminas Hill in the distance. Below, 103 Lithuanian stamps by the artist Kalpokas encircle the entire hall."


Despite the decorative aspect, the building became the benchmark of modern construction in the society of the time. A multi-storey building (four storeys and a basement) equipped with modern elevators, spacious operations hall, convenient working conditions (even the showers were installed for the convenience of employees), an electricity-driven clock mounted in the main façade in 1935 had become one of the key architectural highlights in the temporary capital. It is interesting that the staircase near the central post office has remained an important urban attraction. Hence, the post office displays a particularly close link between the ideas of modern architecture and the then-active thoughts of "national style". It is one of the most organic combinations of the two ideological engines of the interwar architecture - modernity and nationality.


Vaidas Petrulis


Fragment of Laisvės av. before post construction of Post office. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Fragment of Laisvės av. before post construction of Post office. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Kaunas Central Post Office in the interwar period. Photo from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Kaunas Central Post Office in the interwar period. Photo from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Model of the building with the monument of Vytautas the Great. Photo from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Model of the building with the monument of Vytautas the Great. Photo from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Soviet propaganda on the facade of the central post office. Photo by N. Maksivomas, 1947, from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Soviet propaganda on the facade of the central post office. Photo by N. Maksivomas, 1947, from the Lithuanian Central State Archives, Photodocuments Department.
Worker at the front post front. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Worker at the front post front. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Rear facade during construction. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Rear facade during construction. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Works on interior decoration. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Works on interior decoration. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Interior of the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Interior of the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Architect Feliksas Vizbaras in the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Architect Feliksas Vizbaras in the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Decorations of the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Decorations of the main hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Main hall in the soviet times. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Main hall in the soviet times. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
 Entrance hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Entrance hall. Photo from personal collection of A. Burkus.
Entrance hall. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Entrance hall. Photo from the Rare Prints Department of the KTU Library.
Ground floor plan. From the publication „Technika ir ūkis“, 1933.
Ground floor plan. From the publication „Technika ir ūkis“, 1933.
Illuminations of the main façade. From the publication „Paštininkų žodis“, 1932.
Illuminations of the main façade. From the publication „Paštininkų žodis“, 1932.
Cartoon. From the publication „Pašto pasaulis“, 1935.
Cartoon. From the publication „Pašto pasaulis“, 1935.
Photo by Vytautas Augustinas. From the publication „Jaunoji karta“, 1936.
Photo by Vytautas Augustinas. From the publication „Jaunoji karta“, 1936.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Rear facade. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Rear facade. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Fragment of the interior. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Memorial tablet. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Memorial tablet. Photo by M. Bugailiškytė, 2013.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.
Project. From the Kaunas Regional State Archives.