name = Kalisz
motto = Poloniae urbs vetustissima
imagesize = 250px
image_caption = Town Hall
image_shield = POL Kalisz COA 1.svg
pushpin_label_position = bottom
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = POL
subdivision_type1 = Voivodeship
subdivision_name1 = Greater Poland
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = "city county"
leader_title = Mayor
leader_name = Janusz Pęcherz
established_title = Established
established_date = 2nd century
established_title3 = Town rights
established_date3 = after 1253
area_total_km2 = 70
population_as_of = 2007
population_total = 108841
population_density_km2 = auto
population_metro = 357,349
timezone = CET
utc_offset = +1
timezone_DST = CEST
utc_offset_DST = +2
latd = 51 | latm = 45 | lats = 27 | latNS = N | longd = 18 | longm = 4 | longs = 48 | longEW = E
postal_code_type = Postal code
postal_code = 62-800 to 62-821
area_code = +48 062
blank_name = Car plates
blank_info = PK
website = http://www.kalisz.pl
Kalisz Audio-IPA-pl|Kalisz.ogg|'|k|a|l|i|sz is a
cityin central Polandwith 109,800 inhabitants (1995). Situated on the Prosnariver in the southeastern part of the Greater Poland Voivodeship, the city forms a conurbationwith the nearby towns of Ostrów Wielkopolskiand Skalmierzyce. See Kalisz Countyfor the regional administrative area ( powiat).
Kalisz is an important regional industrial and commercial centre, with many notable factories, the Calisia
pianofactory among them. The city is also a centre for traditional folk art.
Kalisz is now considered to be the oldest town of Poland, because it was mentioned by
Ptolemyas " Calisia". That town was situated in the territory of the Diduni (Vandals) in Magna Germaniaon the Amber Trail. Although it is still not certain whether the exact spot where the city centre is located nowadays was inhabitated in 2nd century, there are many artifacts of the Roman times in the area, pointing to the fact that it must have been one of the stops of the Roman caravans heading for the Baltic Sea.
Modern Kalisz was most probably founded in 9th century as a
castellanyand a minor fort. The name itself stems from the Celtic term "cal" which means stream, or Slavic term "kal", meaning swampor marsh. In 1106 Bolesław Krzywoustycaptured the town and incorporated it into his feudal domain. Between 1253 and 1260 the town was granted German town lawcalled Środa Śląska Lawafter Środa Śląskain Silesia, a local variation of the Magdeburg Law, and soon started to grow. One of the richest towns of Greater Poland, during the feudal fragmentation of Poland it formed a separate duchy ruled by local branch of the Piast dynasty. After Poland was reunited, the town became a notable centre of weavery and wood production, as well as one of the cultural centres of Greater Poland. The economical development of the area was aided by a large number of Protestant Czech Brothers, who settled in and around Kalisz after being expelled from Bohemia. Also, Jewish settlement of Kalisz dates back to 1139.
In 1282 the city laws were confirmed by
Przemysł II of Polandand in 1314 it was made the capital of the Kalisz Land, one of the Voivodeships of Poland, by king Władysław Łokietek. A notable centre of trade, Kalisz was also located more or less in the centre of Poland back then. Because of its strategic location, in 1343 king Casimir III signed there a peace treaty with the Teutonic Order. As a royal town, the city managed to defend much of its initial privileges and in 1426 a new town hallwas built. Also, it was there that king Mieszko the Oldis buried.
In 1574 the
Jesuitswere brought to Kalisz and in 1584 they opened a Jesuit College there, one of the most notable centres of education in Poland back then. However, with time the importance of Kalisz declined and its place was taken by nearby Poznań.
In 1792, fire destroyed much of the city centre. The following year, in the second partition of Poland, the
Kingdom of Prussiaabsorbed the city, called "Kalisch" in German. In 1801, Wojciech Bogusławskithere built one of the first permanent theatres in the region.
In 1806 Kalisz was joined with the
Duchy of Warsaw. During Napoleon's invasion of Russia, following Yorck's Convention of Tauroggenof 1812, von Stein's Treaty of Kalisz was signed between Russia and Prussia in 1813, confirming that Prussia now was on the side of the Allies.
After the defeat of
Napoleon Bonaparte, Russia annexed Kalisz. The nearness of the Prussian border accelerated economic development of the city and Kalisz ("Кализ" in the Russian Cyrillic alphabet) started to attract many settlers, not only from other regions of Poland and other provinces of the Russian empire but also from German states. In 1902, a new railroad linked Kalisz to Warsawand Łódź.
After the outbreak of the Great War, the proximity of the border proved disastrous for the city, as it was one of the first destroyed towns of that war. After a series of border clashes, the German army bombed the city with artillery. During the heavy fights that lasted from
August 7to August 22, 1914, the town was destroyed almost completely (see destruction of Kalisz) after entry of the German units led by Hermann Preusker. 800 men were arrested and then several of them slaughtered, while the city was set on fire and the remaining inhabitants were expelled. Out of roughly 68,000 inhabitants in 1914, only 5,000 live in the city the following year. However, by the end of the Great War much of the city centre was more or less rebuilt and many of the former inhabitants were allowed to return to their town.
After the war Kalisz became part of the, once again independent,
Republic of Poland. The reconstruction continued and in 1925 the new town hall was opened. Until 1939 the town had roughly 89,000 inhabitants. After the outbreak of the Invasion of Poland (1939), World War II, the proximity of the border proved once again disastrous. Although the town was captured by the Wehrmachtalmost instantly and without much fight, the city was directly annexed by Nazi Germany. By the end of World War IIapproximately 30,000 local Jews had been murdered. Additional 20,000 local Catholics were either murdered or expelled to the General Governmentor to Germany as slave workers. In 1945 the city had only 43,000 inhabitants, that is roughly half of the pre-war population.
World War IIthe reconstruction of the town started. In 1975, after Edward Gierek's reform of the administrative scheme of Poland, Kalisz became the seat of a separate Kalisz Voivodeship. It was abolished in 1998 and since then Kalisz has been the capital of a separate powiat within the Greater Poland Voivodeship. In 1991 the city's feast was established on June 11, to commemorate the reaffirmation of city rights in 1282. The following year the city became a seat of a separate diocese.
Kalisz is a notable centre of education in the region. It is home to 30 kindergartens, 29 primary schools, and fifteen junior high schools. Seven colleges and a dozen or so trade schools are located there. The city is also home to branches of
Poznań University, Poznań University of Economy, and Poznań University of Science and Technology, as well as several other institutions of higher education.
Although there is little heavy industry within the city limits, Kalisz is home to several of the biggest companies in Poland. It is notable for the Calisia piano factory and for the
Winiaryand Ziołopexfood processing plants (the former is now part of the Nestlégroup), the Big Star jeansfactory, and the Hellena, Jutrzenka, and Kaliszankasoft-drink production plants. Two plane engines production factories, WSK-Kalisz and Pratt & Whitney Kalisz (a branch of Pratt & Whitney Canada), are located in Kalisz.
Winiary Kalisz- women's volleyball team playing in Polish Seria A Women's Volleyball League:Champions of Poland,2nd place in 2003/2004 season and 1st place in 2004/2005 season. - * [http://www.calisiassk.pl/ www.calisiassk.pl]
KKS 1925 Kalisz- men's soccer team playing in Polish B-Class Soccer League. - * [http://www.kkskalisz.pl/ www.kkskalisz.pl]
Notable people from Kalisz
Avraham Gombiner1633 Jewish rabbi and scholar
Wojciech Bogusławski1757 playwright and director playwright
Cyprian Godebski1765 freedom fighter and a poet
Dawid Flamm1793 gynecologist
Karl Heinrich Hermes1800-1856 journalist
Thekla von Gunkert1810 author
Agaton Giller- (*1831 in Opatówek, Poland- +1887 in Stanisławów) - patriotic activist
Stefan Giller- (*1833 in Opatowek, Poland- +1918) - poet, an epigone of the Polish Romanticism
Adam Asnyk1838 poet
Ludwig Adolf Neugebauer1856 gynecologist
Juliusz Bursche1862 bishop
Jerzy Świrski1882 - Vice-Admiral
Maria Dąbrowska1889 writer
Theodor Meron1930 president of the (ICTY) and judge in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
Stanisław Barcikowski, painter
Boleslaus the Pious, duke of Greater Poland
Bolesław III Rozrzutny, duke of Silesia
Izabela Cywińska, director
Augustyn Kordecki, prior of the Jasna Góra Monasteryand hero of The Deluge
Jerzy Kryszak, actor
Tadeusz Kulisiewicz, artist
Bonawentura Niemojowski, journalist
Wincenty Niemojowski, journalist
Alfons Parczewski, lawyer, rector of the Wilno University
* Wlasyslaw Pilars de Pilar - poet
Wojciech Siemion, actor and director
Zevi Herman Solnik, writer and Zionist
Zdzisława Sośnicka, singer
Stefan Szolc-Rogoziński, traveller and explorer
Stanisław Wojciechowski, president of Poland
Mieczysław Voigt, actor
Alfred Wierusz-Kowalski, painter
Jan Ptaszyn Wróblewski, musician
Kris Grzymski, archaeologist
Artur Zawisza Czarny, freedom fighter
Zvi Hirsch Chajes, 19th c. Talmudic scholar
Janina Davidska, 20th c Author
Mania Zolta, 20th c Bubba
Diana Błaszczyk, 21st c. Go Player
Iga Wyrwal, model
Kalisz is twinned with:
Erfurtand Hamm, Germany
Kamieniec Podolski, Ukraine
Prestonand Southampton, England
# Martin, Slovakia
La Louviere, Belgium
Minsk(borough of Frunze), Belarus
Ostrów Wielkopolski, Poland
History of the Jews in Kalisz
Kalisz Department(Polish: "Departament Kaliski"): a unit of administrative division and local government in Polish Duchy of Warsawin years 1806-1815.
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