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History and monuments

Strona główna » Zawiercie » History and monuments

Kromołów is the oldest quarter of Zawiercie as the first reference about it comes from 1193. The Zawiercie Ironworks was mentioned in 1431 and the Zawiercie village in the year 1492. In 1490 Jan Pilecki appeared in documents as the owner of Zawiercie, two years later Jan Feliks Rzeszowski - Cracow canon. Later on Zawiercie became the property of the Boners’ family and after some years was transferred to the Firlejs’ family for almost 100 years. In 1669 Mikołaj Firlej resold Zawiercie together with Kromołów to Stanisław Warszycki - the Mazovian Voivode. After the period of Warszycki’s ownership  Zawiercie became the property of  the Męcińskis’ counts, then Konstanty Gostkowski’s – General Lieutenan of Fryderyk Wielki II. In 1820 Zawiercie was purchased by Pingsheim, a banker of Wrocław.
In 1827 two names appeared in the source documents: the Small Zawiercie and the Big Zawiercie. These settlements have been marked these names on maps until 1914. In 1887 there were 5.200 people and the number increased to 35 thousand citizens by 1914. This increase was the result of favourable location of Zawiercie and development of industry. However, the building of Warsaw – Vienna railway in the second part of the 19th century has played the key role in the town development. In the years 1890-1912s a magnificent and beautiful railway station in regency style was built to honour the 300th anniversary  of the reign of the line of Romanow Tsars. The construction of Pilica-Siewierz Road had also an influence on the town economic development.
    The beginning of cotton industry dates back to the early years of the 19th century. In 1830s the first cotton spinning mill was set up in Zawiercie - at present “Zawtex” Cotton Industry Works, which extension process had been continued by the Ginsberg brothers since 1869. The Joint Stock Company "Zawiercie" was establisged owing to them. Textile Works of Ginsberg brothers and TAZ (Joint Stock Company) belonged to one of the biggest ones in the Kingdom. The Plants were extended by their own housing estates, school and Community centre. In 1886 Ernest Erbe’s Ironworks was set up - at present Cast Iron Foundry Company Ltd. In 1880 J. Sambor and M. Krawczyk set up Machine Overhead Transmission factory and Cast Iron Foundry. In the years 1900-1910 "Huldczyński" Steelworks was built - at present “CMC Zawiercie S.A. The year 1884 brought the beginning of Glassworks - Reich and Company. In 1898 there were four elementary schools in Zawiercie: one communal school, TAZ school (No 2), Reich Glassworks school (No 4) and one railway school.
    In the following years one- or two-chamber private schools were being opened. Helena Malczewska Girls' boarding school came into operation as well. In 1907 Józef Meyer’s Male pro-grammar school and in 1913 Wanda Karczewska’s Female grammar school  initiated  their teaching curses. In 1934 co-educational Trade School was established by Polish Merchants’ Association.
Following the year 1927 elementary and community schools became nationalised and converted into public ones.  School of Handicraft started its activity. By the year 1939 the following schools existed in Zawiercie: 6 elementary schools, male grammar school, female grammar school, co-educational school of trade, public co-educational grammar schools.

During the interwar period there were 4 cinemas in Zawiercie. In 1933 puppets theatre "Baj-Baju" was established. At that time also municipal park was opened to the public  - one of the most beautiful parks in the Dąbrowa Basin.
    Until 1903 Zawiercie had belonged to the Kromołów Parish. In 1900 the construction of Neo-Gothic Parish Church dedicated to St. Paul and Peter Apostles was finished, built by TAZ Management, the building committee and Zawiercie workers according to engineer Hugon Kudera’s project. Since the year 1925 the Zawiercie Parish has belonged to the Częstochowa Diocese. Within the parish premises the "Lira" choir was active and won the first prize from among male choirs in 1925 at the Provincial Convention in Kielce.

The Canon Priest, Bolesław Wajzler, was the last parish-priest before the outbreak of the 2nd  World War. He was known here as a social worker and distinguished professor of local Female Teachers' College, who was murdered in Auschwitz Camp.
Catholic burial cemetery was set up in 1903 and in 1920 it was considerably extended.
A dozen or so monumental Jewish cemeteries and the Holenderskis’ cemetery chapel remained.
In 19th century Jewish commune existed in Zawiercie and orthodox Jewish influences were very strong.
In 1880 a synagogue was built in Marszałkowska Street and Jewish community house next to it. There are still monumental Jewish cemeteries in Kromołów and in Daszyńskiego Street. Jewish cemetery in Kromołów which comes from the 18th century is situated near the road running to the Zawiercie centre and it has got many tombstones with relief representations from the 18th  and 19th century. A complex of Jewish tenements houses has been preserved until now at Marszałkowska and Hoża Street.
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