The Polish Village of Pyrzowice

Yesterday, I wrote about the location of the Polish village of Pyrzowice at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century. An unambiguous way to identify the location at that time would be:

Pyrzowice, Ożarowice Gmina, Będzin Powiat, Piotrków Gubernia, Congress Kingdom of Poland

Of course, the village didn’t move around; it wasn’t located in physically different places at different times. However, because the borders of Poland changed, and the administrative districts in which Pyrzowice changed, it is important to modify the descriptors of the location to reflect the political boundaries at different times in history.

But how does one find these descriptors? The answer is to consult maps and gazetteers of the appropriate time period.

A valuable gazetteer of Poland for the late 19th century and early 20th century is the Słownik Geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego i Innych Krajów Słowiańskich (The Geographical Dictionary of the Kingdom of Poland and Other Slavonic Countries).

The village of Pyrzowice appears in volume IX on page 328 of that monumental work:

Slownik Geograficzny Entry for Pyrzowice

Słownik Geograficzny Entry for Pyrzowice

Source: Chlebowski, Bronisław, Władysław Walewski, and Filip Sulimierski, eds., Słownik Geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego i Innych Krajów Słowiańskich (Geographical Dictionary of the Kingdom of Poland and other Slavonic Countries) – Warsaw 1888, Volume IX, page 328.

Click on the link for a PDF copy of the Słownik Geograficzny entry for Pyrzowice. Translated from the Polish, the entry states:

Pyrzowice, a village and grange [large manorial farmstead], Powiat [District] będziński, Ożarowice gmina [municipality], Sączów parish; the village has 26 homes, 256 residents, 23 settlements, and 331 mórgs [about 1.388 mórgs per acre] in the manor; the grange has 4 homes, 1006 mórgs (in this 500 mórgs of cultivated land). The territory of the manor house belongs to the holdings of the Reverend Hugo Hohenlohe. In 1827, there were 22 homes and 105 residents. According to Długosz, in the 15th century the village of Pyrzowice was in the Sączów parish, the property of Stanisław Rudzki, the Count of Pilaw. It had 22 fields from which tithes of 6 grosze [pennies] was paid to the Bishop of Kraków; out of this, measures of barley and oats were given to the parish priest in Sżczów (Długosz, Liber Beneficiorum, volume II, page 202). In a second place, this historian provides different details, namely that Pyrzowice was the property of Jan Feliks Tarnowski, it had 12 fields from which tithes of 6 grosze from the fields was given to the Bishop of Kraków. The value of the tithes amounted to 1 grzywnas [historical silver coins worth several denarii] (Liber Beneficiorum, volume III, page 73).
                                                                              Bronisław Chlebowski

The words and descriptions in square brackets are my own annotations.

Jan Długosz was a historian who included historical information about Polish villages in his multivolume work entitled Liber beneficiorum ecclesiae Cracoviensis (Book of the Benefices of the Bishopric of Krakow). This work is referenced in many places in the Słownik Geograficzny.

The name Bronisław Chlebowski at the end of the article is the name of the author of the article on Pyrzowice.

The name of the country in which the village of Pyrzowice was located at various times in history include:

  • 1025-1569 – Kingdom of Poland (Królestwo Polskiego)
  • 1569-1795 – Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (Rzeczpospolita Obojga Narodów)
  • 1795-1807 – Kingdom of Prussia
  • 1807-1815 – Duchy of Warsaw
  • 1815-1864 – Congress Kingdom of Poland
  • 1864-1918 – Congress Kingdom of Poland; also called Vistulaland (Privislinskii krai)
  • 1918-1945 - Republic of Poland (Rzeczpospolita Polska), although this name was not officially established until 1921; also called the Second Republic of Poland
  • 1945-1989 – People’s Republic of Poland (Polska Rzeczpospolita Ludowa)
  • 1989-Present – Republic of Poland (Rzeczpospolita Polska); also called the Third Republic of Poland

Tomorrow: Maps of Poland from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Copyright © 2007 by Stephen J. Danko

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One Response to The Polish Village of Pyrzowice

  1. James Curley says:

    Hi Steve, I’m back genealogy blogging again – i’ve been busy moving from England to New York and getting ready to get married. Lots to do, but i’m looking forward to blogging and also catching up with a couple of months’ worth of your excellent blog. Great work, I always enjoy reading. Best wishes, James.

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