In the 1850s the occupying Austrian military authorities built a brick fortress around the Mound, which they used as a strategic lookout point. Demolishing a chapel of St. Bronisława at the site, the thoughtful Austrians actually built a new chapel, incorporating it into the stronghold. By contrast, the Germans later threatened to entirely level the Mound and surrounding fortifications during their WWII occupation as they set about destroying all Polish monuments and national symbols (along with 3 million Polish Jews). Though parts of the fortress were destroyed, the complex has been restored and significant engineering improvements have been made to the Mound to ensure its longevity.
Climbing to the peak is tiring work, but the panoramic views of Kraków are a worthwhile reward. The Neo-Gothic Chapel of St. Bronisława, which contains a medley of objects connected to Kościuszko's life, can also be visited and the surrounding fortifications also house several small historical exhibits (included with admission to the Mound), a chapel, two cafes, a radio station, and restaurant.
To learn more about quite simply the greatest Pole ever (sorry JPII), read our full-length feature on Tadeusz Kościuszko.