RO D Z I N Y, S U M M E R 2 0 0 2





This is a translation done by William F. Hoffman of a entry from the 15-volume Polish gazetteer Slownik geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego i innych krajów slowianskich (Geographic Dictionary of the former Kingdom of Poland and other Slavic Lands), published 1880- 1902.
Polish terms not easily rendered in English are marked with asterisks; explanations follow the translations.

Tarnobrzeg, a town and county seat in Galicia, on the right bank of the Wisla [Vistula]; it has a station of the Nadbrzezie-Debica railroad, and is 71 km. northeast of Debica. A highway runs through the town from Debica to where the San flows into the Wisla, and continues along the left bank of the San to Jaroslaw. Tarnobrzeg is 173 meters above sea level, and towers to some extent over the sandy plain from which it rises. The town’s northern part, with the beautiful castle of Count Jan Tarnowski, forms the separate gmina* of Dzików. The town does not have a parish church (it belongs to the parish in the neighboring village of Miechocin), only a ominican church and monastery founded in 1676 by Jan Stanisl. Amor Tarnowski and his wife Zofia Barbara z Dabrowicy née Firlej. In the church is an image of the Blessed Mother, transferred from the castle in Dzików and recognized as iraculous by Kraków bishop Trzebicki in 1675. This picture was transferred in a ceremony on 20 May 1678. Since then a procession has been held several times a year from the monastery to the castle.
In early November 1734 the agreement of the Confederation of Tarnogród, designed to keep Stanislaw Leszczynski on the throne against August III, was signed in Dzików castle. This beautiful Gothic castle, which is well maintained, holds many relics of the past, works of art, and a sizable library, rich in old Polish prints. These collections were assembled by Stanislaw Jan Feliks Tarnowski (1779, † 1872).
The town itself occupies 124.1 hectares and numbers 2,460 inhabitants: 960 Roman Catholics, 13 Greek Catholics, 2 Protestants, and 2,475 Jews. It consists primarily of wooden houses. In the town is the office of the starosta [local administrative official] with a building and tax department, the county court, a tax office, a postal and telegraph office, and a 4-grade elementary school. Autonomous authorities are a county council and a district school board. Two doctors are permanent residents of the town, and there is a pharmacy, as well as several shops. A loan society works to facilitate credit; in 1889 its return came to 152,097 Rhenish zlotys. Markets are held every Wednesday. The gmina administration consists of the mayor, his assistant, a secretary, and a police inspector.
The history of the town is unknown.
The whole area of this county—covering part of the river-basin of the right bank of the Wisla and of the San, which flows into it—comprises a wet lowland covered with the great Sandomierz forest, and was not populated until quite late. That is why it was primarily large properties that developed here.
Colonization advances along the banks of the Wisla and the San. Baranów, on the Wisla, became a town as early as the 14th century, and Radomysl nad Sanem in 1556. The first parish churches were in Miechocin on the Wisla in 1326 and Baranów in 1440. We owe the colonization of the area mainly to several powerful families who are its proprietors by way of royal grants. In the mid-16th century the main landowners were: the Mieleckis (Mikolaj, Podolia voivode, and Hieronim), the Tarnowskis Stanislaw, Radom castellan as of 1578), and Andrzej Leszczynski (in Baranów). The Pokrzywnica monastery (on the left bank of the Wisla) owns the village of Nagnajów [Editor: today Pokrzywnica is called Koprzywnica]. Nadbrzezie is a settlement on the outskirts of Sandomierz.
Jakub Siemienski founded Radomysl nad Sanem. According to 1578 tax registers Stanislaw Tarnowski owned property in Dzików. How long the period of forest life lasted is attested by registers from 1578 that list as a separate category of the rural populace “venatores” [Latin, “hunters”]. In Chmielów (not far from Tarnobrzeg) 34 of them were located on 10 lans*, and in other villages each had even more.
The church in Dzików dates from the end of the 17th century. Registers from 1662 do not mention Tarnobrzeg, which surely was a settlement on the outskirts of Dzików. The historian Dlugosz (in Liber beneficiorum) knows and describes the adjacent communities of Dzików and Mokrzyszów, and also Miechocin, but does not mention Tarnobrzeg. Craftsmen and merchants settling near the lord’s residence in Dzików gave rise to the settlement that at the beginning of the current century was still a small marketplace (a Markt per the Post-Lexikon of Crusius, 1802). Echard’s Slownik and Plater’s Geografia say nothing of Tarnobrzeg. The name of the settlement is surely an ancient term for one of the areas around Dzików, and is related in form to names such as Bialobrzeg [Editor: according to Kazimierz Rymut’s Nazwy miast Polski, Krakow, 1987, the brzeg part means “(river) bank,” and Tarno- is from the name of the town’s founder, Count Tarnowski].
Tarnobrzeg county covers 9.2592 sq. miriametrs [1 miriameter = 10 km.] and numbers 60,078 inhabitants in 70 political gminas and 68 cadastral gminas. It occupies the northernmost part of Galicia, and borders the Kingdom of Poland on the northwest and northeast, Mielec county on the southwest, and Kolbuszowa and Nisko counties on the east. It is low, sandy country, largely covered with pine forests and watered by the Wisla and its smaller tributaries, the Trzesn and Leg, as well as by the San, into the right bank of which the Bukowa and Lukowica flow in this county.
The well-hydrated riverlands are fertile, but the rest has poor, sandy soil, from beneath which quicksand comes to the surface. Only in recent years has planting trees in the dunes begun, stablilizing them. According to Dr. Pilat’s Wiadomosci statystyczne (Lwów 1891), of the whole area, a total of 166,633 mórgs, major estates, or property entered in the hypothecary registers, occupies 84,520 mórgs, and minor estates 81,112. Of these, farmland comprises 55,700 (16,008 major vs. 38,790 minor), meadows 22,318 (11,815 vs. 10,503), gardens 622 (221 vs. 401), pastureland 20,511 (2,176 vs. 18,339), forests 56,380 (51,969 vs. 4,411), bogs and ponds 1,435 (all major), unused 8,615 (748 vs. 7,866), for buildings 946 (142 vs. 805). Due to the rather large complex of Count Tarnowski’s estates, only 13.57% of the land in this county is in the hands of Jews. Of 59 landowners (there are no public and churchowned estates at all), 45 are Christians and 14 Jews. Of those owning over 200 mórgs, 44 are Christians and 9 are Jews; of those owning fewer than 200 mórgs, 1 was Christian and 5 were Jews. Jews possess a total of 11,617 mórgs of farmland, meadows, and pastureland, and 4,640 of forests.
There are a total of 156 registered properties; 144 of them are inns, 12 distilleries, 3 breweries, 14 mills, 3 sawmills, and 54 manorial farmsteads.
Industry is undeveloped, and since the soil is not fertile, this county is one of the poorer ones. The industrial stagnation was caused by the lack of means of communication and the frequent floods of the Wisla and the San. Currently, as a result of the construction of the Debica-Nadbrzezie railway, the county has undertaken the task of building embankments on the Wisla, controlling the San and Leg, and planting forests to anchor the dunes.
The political county is divided into two judicial districts, that of Tarnobrzeg and that of Rozwadów. The former covers 44 gminas, 86 manorial areas and 37,551 inhabitants; the latter covers 26 gminas, 24 manorial areas, and 12,294 inhabitants.
(Mac. [Dr. Maurycy Maciszewski] — Volume 12, pp. 183-185.)

Notes on Terms Requiring Explanation
Gmina – administrative subdivision of a powiat, ruled by a council and a wójt. It usually encompasses several villages, or a combination of villages and smaller settlements; or it can consist of a single large estate or a town. In most cases the best way to translate it is “administrative district.”
Lan – a unit of land measurement used in Poland since the 13th century; it means “field,” and originally was used as a description of a full-sized farm a peasant received from his lord, in return for work on the lord’s land. In Malopolska the Franconian lan was used, 23-28 hectares; in Mazovia and Podlasie the Chelmno lan was 16.8-17.0 hectares; and in the Kingdom of Poland the New Polish wlóka was about 16.8 hectares.
Mórg – a unit of land measurement, also called jutrzyna; per Gerald Ortell’s book on Polish parish records, in the Russian partition 1 mórg = 1.388 acres, in the Prussian 1 mórg = 0.631 acres, and in Galicia 1 mórg = 1.422 acres.

Thank you Polish Genealogy Society of American and Fred Hoffman.