Siedlce is located in eastern Poland, east of Warsaw – about halfway between the capital and the Belarusian border.
Highway 2 (E30) from Warsaw to the Belarusian border town of Brest is led in an arc south of the city's suburbs.
The area in which Siedlce is today constituted, in its day, the far north of the historic region of the Małopolska region. It first belonged to Sandomierz county and from 1474 to Lublin county.
The oldest source that mentions the settlement of Siedlce is dated 1448. In 1503, Daniel Siedlecki, near the old village of Siedlce, founded a new village called Nowa Siedlcza. In 1530 he built here the first church. As a result of his son, Stanisław’In 1547, the city's efforts (created by an association of the two villages) gained market town rights, issued by King Zygmunt Stary (The Old). Until 1804 the town of Siedlce was privately owned.
During the first hundred years, the city grew dynamically, both in area and population, many merchants and craftsmen settled here. In the first half of the 17th century. took over the family Olędzki Siedlce as their property. In the middle of the 17th century. suffered the city much during wartime, thus Tatar attacks. The consequences were numerous fires and looting.
Then came Siedlce on the genus Czartoryski’s hands that did much to get the city back on its feet after the devastating wars. After a major fire in 1692, Kazimierz Czartoryski took advantage of the need for reconstruction for a new planning of the square and the streets that went out from here.
After Kazimierz’ death passed the town to Michał Czartoryski and then to his daughter Aleksandra, who married the Lithuanian hetman Michał Ogiński. In 1775 Aleksandra Ogińska inherited the city of Siedlce after his father Michał. The following time was a significant boom period for the city, both financially and culturally, largely thanks to a personal effort by Aleksandra Ogińska’s page. Well-attended theatrical performances were arranged; some of the Enlightenment poets (including Julian Niemcewicz) wrote their works in the Ogiński mansion; Aleksandra saw it as her mission to promote the development and education of local, gifted children. The Polish king, Stanisław August Poniatowski, was a guest of the Ogiński mansion in 1783 and 1793. The family's mansion was rebuilt as well as St. Stanisław's Church. A chapel was built in the family's name, and a town hall was erected, which is still one of the city's famous building monuments. Aleksandra was also behind the construction of the city park, which today bears her name: Aleksandria.
The city's last private owner was Adam Jerzy Czartoryski (of the Puławy line). In a barter deal in 1804 with the government, he took over other property in return for Siedlce, which from that time was government-owned.
After the collapse of the Kościuszko uprising in 1794 and Poland's 3rd division in 1795, Siedlce was occupied by Austria. After the creation in 1807 of the only formally independent Principality of Warsaw, in 1810 Siedlce became the capital of a department. In the Polish Kingdom (1815-1832 in personal union with Russia and then an integral part of the Russian empire), Siedlce was the capital of the county: 1816-1837 in the county of Podlasie, 1837-1844 in the government of Podlasie, 1867-1912 in the government of Siedlce.
The inhabitants of Siedlce and its surroundings took an active part in the January uprising (1863-64), after which the collapse of the Russification of the population was further intensified.
Despite the Russian repression, it was the 19th century. and the beginning of the 20th century. also a period of prosperity for the city; Thus, many well-known buildings were created during that period: the post office, the gymnasium, the prison building, the courthouse, the Jordejernes Kreditselskab, an institution that was important for agricultural development in the area, and the exhibition hall, which was an important element of economic life. In the second half of the 19th century. there was considerable growth in the population. Ca. 50% of the inhabitants were Jews who were mainly engaged in trade and crafts. In addition, the city accommodated a larger group of Russian officials.
The city's development was interrupted by World War I. In August 1915, the Russians left Siedlce and the city was occupied by the Germans. During this occupation, the city (1915-1918) was the seat of a district authority (Kreisamt) under the Warsaw General Government.
After the end of World War I, Poland was re-established as an independent nation, which also meant new opportunities for the city of Siedlce. From 1918, the city was one of the district centers in Lublin county. In particular, the economy was based on trade and crafts, while the heavier industry confined itself to a small number of factories, mainly engaged in the processing of agricultural products. The city was well equipped with educational institutions, also at a higher level, covering both general and vocational education. In the interwar period, a very large military garrison was stationed in Siedlce, consisting of soldiers from several different departments, such as footmen, artillery and others. as well as a military court.
Just before WWII, Jews made up 37% of the population.
During World War II, the resistance movements were active in Siedlce and its environs; several partisan attacks were made on the Germans. In the city was a German prisoner of war camp (mainly for Soviet prisoners), at least half of the prisoners perished in the camp. There were also four forced labor camps, with approx. 12,000 people stayed. Of these, approx. 10,000 led to the extermination camp in Treblinka, while the others were shot in the camps. In total, one-third of the city's inhabitants lost their lives during the occupation, of which approx. 17,000 Jewish residents murdered in Treblinka.
The wartime also brought enormous material destruction to the city. Almost half of the buildings were in ruins. The city center was destroyed. The town hall was in ruins, the Ogiński mansion was damaged. In particular, the railway station area was severely destroyed.
After 1944, an extensive reconstruction was required. New housing blocks, schools and cultural institutions were also built. The Teacher's College started its business in 1969. It is now called the University of Science and Humanities. In the 1970s, a number of industrial companies were built, such as Mostostal (construction of lightweight steel structures), Stalchemak (steel foundry), a tool factory, a spring factory and others.
1975-1998 was Siedlce center city in Siedlce county. The change of system in Poland in 1989 also affected Siedlce. One of the negative consequences was that several of the industrial companies in the city had to close. Other companies changed owners. Several modern shopping centers were built, several streets were renovated and the railway station was modernized.
In 1999, the second higher education institution in the city was inaugurated, the College of Economics and Management.
In connection with the modernization of the E 20 railway line (whose eastern stretch extends from Warsaw to Terespol at the border with Belarus), the railway station Siedlce Zachodnie (West Siedlce West) arose.
In March 2010, construction of the Municipal Stadium began at ul.Północna. In April 2010, the company was chosen to build the Aquapark near the new stadium. In June 2010, the municipality selected the companies to complete the construction of an inner ring road.
From 1998, Siedlce is the center city of a district in Mazowsze county while the city itself has a district status.
The park was originally landscaped as one ‘Italian park’. On this basis, Franciszek Sarnowski and Princess Aleksandra Ogińska created in the late 18th century a sentimental park with wildly growing flowers, winding paths and canals with numerous islands. In the park there were over 30 different buildings, including the princess's homes, gazebos, bathhouses, a fishing hut, a Turkish mosque, an orangery, horse stable, windmill etc. The park was rented out to private in the 1840s and since taken over by the city. World War II caused significant destruction. The present park differs significantly from the former sentimental, romantic park and is now rather a typical city park. In the park grow trees that are over 200 years old.
from approx. 1730 was built by Kazimierz Czartoryski on the site of an old manor house. In the years 1779-81, at the request of Aleksandra Ogińska, the mansion was basically rebuilt in a classicist style. Many well-known Polish personalities, including Tadeusz Kościuszko, were guests of this house. Following the death of Aleksandra Ogińska, the property passed to Izabela Czartoryska. During the Second World War, the mansion burned down. In the reconstruction, the interior of the building was changed to take account of new purposes. Currently, the mansion is managed by Akademia Podlaska.
High School Building (IV Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Hetmana S. Żółkiewskiego)
It is a classicist building erected 1841-44 by drawings by the Italian architect Antonio Corazzi. A famous student of this school was (in the years 1862-63) Aleksander Głowacki, later known as the author Bolesław Prus; he also participated in the January uprising, during which he was imprisoned in Siedlce. Among the students who graduated from this school are well-known individuals such as Antoni Ponikowski, geodetic and politician, born in Siedlce; In 1921-22, he was prime minister in an expert government, later minister of church and education, and head of the Ministry of Culture. Until recently, there was a music school in the building.
The classicist building was designed by Antonio Corazzi and erected in the first quarter of the 19th century. Originally it was a carriage gate that contained vehicles belonging to Aleksandra Ogińska. The history of the theater in Siedlce goes back to 1788.
Next to St. Stanislaw's Church is the late Baroque rectory from 1768-1774. It was Princess Aleksandra Ogińska who built the house, and she lived in it herself in 1781 while the family's mansion was rebuilt. In the years under the Principality of Warsaw, the building was decorated for a court house. Later there was a post office here. The building now serves as a rectory for St. Stanislaus's Church. The building is on 2 floors with mansard roof and front facade with front center part and front end.
City Hall building
The town hall is considered to be the most valuable public building in the city. Due to its original shape, this building is considered to be the most interesting town hall buildings in Poland. It was erected in 1763-66 probably after drawings by Johann Sigmund Deybel at the site of a formerly burnt-out town hall building of wood. The building was erected in cross form. The wings were used for shops and stalls, while the administrative rooms were located in the centrally located tower section. Architecturally, the town hall is influenced by German building style, but without a unique style. The town hall was partially destroyed by fires in 1784 and 1789 as well as during World War II. From the Town Hall tower, a chime plays the well-known and beloved polonaise in a minor, Pożegnanie Ojczyzny (Farewell to the Fatherland), written by Michał Ogiński. Today there is a regional museum in the building. In recent years, a fountain has been built at the town hall building – central to the west facade – to commemorate the municipality's good cooperation with the Italian city of Pescantina.
St. Stanisław's Church
At Ul.Florianska, directly opposite the town hall building stands this church dedicated to the martyr of St. Stanisław; it is the oldest ground-walled church building in the city. It was built in 1740-1749 in Baroque style; however, the facade was rebuilt in a classicist style in 1793.
The house was built circa 1787 by Aleksandra Ogińska, first with an equilateral floor plan but later remodeled so that the floor plan was T-shaped. To this one-storey house, in 1873, a two-storey building was built that contained the Citizens' Club. Odwach has been used for a variety of purposes, including guard building and arrest, police station and food chain Społem. The building now houses the Public Library of Siedlce.
The post office
by ul.Piłsudskiego is a two-story classicist style building from 1828, designed by Italian architect Antonio Corazzi. The building has gained its distinctive appearance through a representative projected frontispiece. In 1979, a blackboard was erected on the front facade to commemorate the postal workers who suffered heroism during the German occupation in World War II.
Diocese of Curie
This building, now housing the diocese's administration, was originally built (in 1872-73) as a seat for the Landowners' Credit Company. A bas-relief on the triangular headboard, depicting two peasants and a woman with a grain nug, recalls the original purpose of the building.
Church of the Virgin Mary – The Cathedral
The most characteristic sacred building in Siedlce, the three-tiered cathedral, was designed by Zygmunt Zdański and built in 1905-1912. The style is neo-Gothic with a floor plan like a Latin cross. The length of the building is 52 m, the width 19 m and the height of the main ship is 16.5 m; the towers measure 75 m in height and can be seen for many kilometers. Famous are the stained glass windows.
The column Toscana
was erected in 1783 by Aleksandra Ogińska in connection with the planned visit of King Stanisław Poniatowski. The pillar, crowned by a Baroque cross, was to show the king's path to the Ogiński mansion.
This obelisk, crowned by a bust of Tadeusz Kosciuszko, Polish general, leader of the uprising and national hero, was erected in 1917 in commemoration of the centenary of his death as well as his visit to Siedlce on two occasions in 1794.
The memorial, created in honor of the distinguished Polish head of state in the interwar period, Józef Piłsudski, was unveiled in 1930. The memorial was removed immediately after the end of World War II, but re-created in 1990.
Chapel of the Holy Cross
at ul.Starowiejska is the last of the building memorials in the city associated with the Ogiński family. It was erected after drawings by Zygmunt Vogel in 1791 and built as a castle chapel. The building is in a classicist style, octagonal, covered with a dome crowned by a lantern. On the east side, across the entrance to Aleksandra Ogińska's tomb crypt, there is a portico (an entrance) with a broken pillar and a monogram with the letters AO
Muchawka Lake (Zalew nad Muchawką)
In the western outskirts of the urban area, in connection with the river Muchawka has created a lake, which today is a very popular excursion destination for the inhabitants of the city – but also from other towns in the area many visitors come. From the west railway station there is only a 10 minute walk to the lake shore. Here you will find a lovely beach and several recreational facilities are available. You can borrow equipment for water sports, e.g. pedalos. There are also cafes and concerts are held during the season. From the west you can fish in the lake.
The district for which Siedlce is the center is a distinct agricultural region. The main crops are cereals and potatoes. In addition, dairy cattle and pigs are kept.
Kotun (approx. 15 km west of Siedlce, by highway 2)
Ca. 3 km south of the center of the station town Kotun is a very small settlement Chlewiska.
Here lies “The House of Creative Work “Reymontowka”“ (Dom Pracy Twórczej “Reymontowka”). This is one of the most interesting sights in the vicinity of Siedlce. It is housed in a listed mansion built in the middle of the 19th century. to the Różański family. The manor and associated property subsequently changed owner several times. In 1926, the mansion and 300 hectares of land were purchased by renowned author Władysław Reymont’s widow, Aurelia. For the purchase, she used part of the money that Reymont had received in connection with the Nobel Prize in Literature, which he received in 1924, primarily for his major novel “The farmers”. In her time, an eastern part was added to the mansion, a gardener's residence and a Podhale-style entrance gate, which was set up in the park and garden, new alleys were created and exotic trees, shrubs and flowers were planted. After 1939, the site changed several times until 1981, when the property was acquired by the Culture and Art Administration under Siedlce county, which opened here “The House of Creative Work “Reymontowka”“. Here you can organize common outdoor painting, artist workshops, courses, conferences and concerts. “Reymontowka” make available to guests: conference room, well equipped apartment, 40 beds in rooms for 1, 2 or more persons, library, tennis courts, swimming pool for children. Many other events can take place at the direct request of the guests.
Ca. 6 km southwest of Kotun lies Eliszew with a beautiful wooden church.
Patrykozy (approx. 25 km north of Siedlce)
The castle of Patrykozy.
The castle was built in 1832-43 for General Teodor Jaroszewski in Gothic romantic style. A tributary to Liwiec provided the water supply to the moat and a pond. The building is characterized by irregularity and diversity. To the west stands a tower on three floors and to the north a round fortress tower on two floors. Incidentally, the building is crowned by numerous spikes and spiers. The castle is surrounded by an English park with gazebo. Having been used for various purposes after World War II, i.a. fire station, the castle was purchased in 1995 by a private person intending to expand the castle, reconstruct the park and create a magnificent residence.
Mordy (about 17 km northeast of Siedlce; towards Łosice)
Archangel Saint Michael's Church.
This parish church is a Baroque building from the early 18th century. The access to the church grounds goes through a baroque-style, ground-walled bell tower from the first half of the 18th century.
is from the 1st half of the 18th year. It was erected in Baroque style at the site of the former fortified mansion. After rebuilding around the year 1800, the building appears to be in a classicist style. The castle is on two floors, the side extensions, however, on three floors. On the front facade there is a risalite (protruding middle portion) with a porticus (entrance) carried by 4 columns. The tympanone is the noble weapon Doliwa (used by the later owner: Zembrzuski). A Baroque-style entrance gate from the mid-18th century. with arcade review leads up to the castle, which is otherwise surrounded by a park with remains of the former moat and violence as well as many species of conifers.
Korczew (about 32 km northeast of Siedlce)
The castle dates from the 2nd quarter of the 18th century. and expanded after 1834 by drawings by Franciszek Jaszczołd. It is a late-class 2 storey building with rectangular floor plan. There are rice lattices on both facades; on the front facade it is provided with a two-column portico. The castle is surrounded by a landscape park with many old trees.
Skórzec (14 km southwest of Siedlce; towards Garwolin)
St. Paul's Church.
The original church was from 1711 and built in wood. The present church is funded by Krzysztof Cieszkowski, who was the castle (bailiff) of the Liw castle at the end of the 18th century. The building is in Baroque, classicist style, the single ship with a narrow, south-facing chancel. On the side of the building are the porch and the chapel.
The two-story monastery building is in the classicist style, the foundation wall, ie. with bricks and lime. It is built against the church on its south side.
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