History in Poland begins as waves of tribes migrated, invaded, settled and colonized and settled. Borders shifted. Fiefdoms, kingdoms, republics, and territorial empires claimed dominion over the territory. Poland had its heyday before disappearing off the map from 1795 until 1918. Often under occupation, cities like Gdansk aka Danzig still carry the scars of invasion by the Germans at Westerplatte setting off what became World War II. Warsaw and to a lesser extent Gdansk, suffered massive destruction and had to be built from the ground up. Palaces, Cathedrals, cemeteries, churches and even synagogues somehow survived while memorials marked by a cross sprung up.