History of the Village and Parish of Dylągowa

A couple of days ago, I translated the Słownik Geograficzny entry for the Polish village of Dylągowa, the seat of the parish in which I believe my paternal grandmother was baptized and married.

Since then, I’ve done some additional research on the history of the village.

The location was settled in 1484 and, at that time was called Vylagowa. In 1489 the village was called Dylagowka, in 1515 it was called Dilagowa, and in 1559 it was called Dyliągowa. Finally, in 1700, it assumed its present name: Dylągowa. The name apparently originates from the first settler, Johannes Dyląg, whose nickname dyląg means long man or stick.

Historical records first mention Dylągowa in 1484 and state that the place belonged to Piotr Kmita.

In the 16th Century, the local parish priest, Andrzej from Dynów, advocated the Reformation in his homilies and was excommunicated by the Bishop of Przemyśl. In 1552, the Roman Catholic Church in Dylągowa was seized and looted by Calvinists, led by Stanisław Stadnicki, who had also taken over the church in nearby Dubiecko. Stanisław’s son, Marcin Stadnicki of Żmigród, castellan of Sanok, granted a new endowment to the Roman Catholic Church in 1625.

In 1703, the church burned down and documents regarding the early history of the church in Dylągowa were destroyed. In 1706, Teofil Czartoryski and Stanisław Pęklaski endowed a new church. This church was built of wood and named for Saint Zofia.

In the years 1906-1911, a stone church, again under the name of Saint Zofia, was built in the Romanesque style on new ground by the Reverend J. M. Steliński. This church was 33 meters long, 15 meters wide, and 12 meters high. The main altar and two side altars were brought from the old wooden church.

The village of Dylągowa experienced hard times during World War II. Because of an attack on the command of Second Lieutenant Aleksander Grube (alias “The Vulture”) in the guard of the Ukrainian Police in Jawornik Ruski, a decision was made to “pacify” Dylągowa. The rectory of the church was taken by the occupying armies. Residents were sent to Siberia or to the German Death Camps. On 25 Apr 1944, any residents still in the village were imprisoned in the church and convicted to death. The church was to be blown up with the people inside. The Reverend Fr. Paściak prepared the people for the explosion and distributed Holy Communion. In the end, the lives of the residents were spared when the Reverend Father sacrificed his own life.

On 04 Oct 1945, Dylągowa and the neighboring villages of Bartkówka, Łączki, Sielnica and Pawłokoma were burned to the ground by the Ukrainian Rebel Army in retaliation for an attack on Pawłokoma.

Except for the church, everything in Dylągowa had been burned and many of the residents had been killed. The corpse of the Reverend Father was taken to the cemetery by sled and his body was buried there. On 01 Jan 1946, the parish in Dylągowa ceased to exist.

After the war, the village of Dylągowa was rebuilt. The Reverend M. Pawul and the parishioners reconstructed the rectory and restored the church. In the present church, on the main altar, new pictures of Saint Zofia, the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and a crucifix with the figures of Saint Jan and Our Lady at the Grave were installed. New pictures of Saint Antoni and the Mother of God were placed on the side altar. The Stations of the Cross are oil paintings that originate from the year 1888. In the steeple of the church there are two bells, a 300 kilogram bell named Jan and a 150 kilogram bell named Zygmunt.

A 17-voice organ was purchased in 1954 and was built by local craftsmen. Polychromes of Professor K. Szumczak were obtained in 1961. In 1963, the tabernacle was installed and the church was finally wired for electricity. Between 1978-1980, loudspeakers were installed, wood paneling was added, a commemorative plaque was affixed to the church, and a new roof was completed.

In the parish cemetery there still exist gravestones from the 19th century, including those of Aleksander Starzeński (d. 1831) and Roza née Zabielski Kamieniecki (d. 1843).

Written for the Carnival of Genealogy.

Copyright © 2008 by Stephen J. Danko

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4 Responses to History of the Village and Parish of Dylągowa

  1. Hal Turner says:

    Fascinating information on your ancestors and the struggles of your little town in Poland. Glad to see that a fellow scout has excelled!

  2. Lisa says:

    Steve –

    This town has such a sad story, but what resilience must have been formed in its people. Thanks for sharing this history. I am happy to hear that you are able to translate such a wealth of historical information from the Polish language. Keep up the good work!

    Small-leaved Shamrock
    A light that shines again
    100 Years in America

  3. Janice Brown says:


    How wonderful that you can relate so far back in the history of the village of Dylągowa. It is a sad story mankind’s inhumanity to man, and a happy ending that the town rebuilt itself.


  4. Teresa Luscombe says:

    Very Interesting. My mother was born in this town in 1911. Last name was Wrobel, Father’s name Frank, grandmother’s name Rozalia Szlemp, grandfather’s name Marcin Wrobel. How could I find more information regarding relatives?

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