Górowo Iławeckie

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Górowo Iławeckie
Coat of arms of Górowo Iławeckie
Coat of arms
Górowo Iławeckie is located in Poland
Górowo Iławeckie
Górowo Iławeckie
Coordinates: 54°16′N 20°29′E / 54.267°N 20.483°E / 54.267; 20.483
Country  Poland
Voivodeship Warmian-Masurian
County Bartoszyce
Gmina Górowo Iławeckie (urban gmina)
 • Total 3.32 km2 (1.28 sq mi)
Population (2006)
 • Total 4,554
 • Density 1,400/km2 (3,600/sq mi)
Postal code 11-220
Website http://www.gorowoilaweckie.pl/

Górowo Iławeckie [ɡuˈrɔvɔ iwaˈvɛt͡skʲɛ] (German: Landsberg (Ostpreußen)) is a town in Bartoszyce County, Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, Poland, with 4,550 inhabitants (2006). The town has a land area of 3.32 square kilometres (1.28 sq mi) and is the smallest municipality (gmina) in geographical extent in Poland.

Early history[edit]

The town was methodical founded by the Teutonic knights commander of Balga, Heinrich von Muro, on February 5, 1335 at the crossing of the streets Balga - Heilsberg and Bartenstein - Mehlsack in the heart of the Old Prussian region of Natangia. It has been largely destroyed in the wars of 1414 and 1456. In 1440 the town was a founding member of the Prussian Confederation trying to oppose the teutonic order. After the battle of Grunwald / Tannenberg and caused by the economic weakness following this defeat the Teutonic order was not able to pay off his debts to his hired freelancers anymore, for that reason the town was given as a pawn to Nikolaus von Taubenheim in 1482. Throughout the centuries the small town changed its landlords, at last the town was the property of the von Schwerin - family from 1664 to 1808.

In 1710 767 out of ca. 1000 inhabitants died of plague.

Napoleonic time[edit]

Town Hall

After the battle of Eylau in February 1807 French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte took lodging at the presbytery of the Lutheran church on 16./17.February 1807, just a few days after the Russian General Bagration. The church itself was used as a camp for Russian POW captured at Eylau and at the preluding battle of Hoofe (Dworzno). 8000 wounded French soldiers were left in Landsberg. The town suffered from these battles and lost almost half of its inhabitants in the year 1807 due to hunger and diseases following this war, 400 inhabitants of the Landsberg region died only in February and March 1807. In 1809 the town counted only 1126 inhabitants and was rather a village.

In 1811 parts of the Napoleonic Grande Armée marched through Landsberg on their way to Russia. Roundabout 40.000 French soldiers camped at the Landsberg area before marching on and had to be supplied with rations by the inhabitants.

20th century[edit]

Greek Catholic Church

In 1898 Landsberg was connected to the railway - line and in 1908 a municipal gas fabrication was established, which is today a technical museum.

In the beginning of World War I Russian troops conquered the town for a few days in late August 1914. Caused on some shootings by German soldiers the post office, one house and several barns were burned down and 7 civilists were executed. A railway bridge was blown up. German troops reconquered the town on September 2, 1914 without fighting.

In February 1945 the town and its periphery was the scene for fierce battles between the Wehrmacht and the Red Army, which finally conquered the town on 2. February 1945. Because of the important street crossing a large number of civilists, trying to escape from East Prussia were captured here. On June 19, 1945 polish administration representatives came to the town and took over the administrative power from the soviet commandant.

Following the Potsdam Conference Gorowo became part of Poland and the German inhabitants were expelled to western Germany in 1946/47.

Next to Poles, especially from the Polish areas annexed by the Soviet Union, a remarkable size of people of Ukraine nationality were settled by force of the polish state in the area of Gorowo throughout the Operation Vistula in 1947. Today a Ukrainian boarding school exists in Gorowo, the former Lutheran church is used by the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.

International relations[edit]

Twin towns — Sister cities[edit]

Górowo Iławeckie is twinned with:


  • Horst Schulz, Preußisch Eylau - eine Kreisstadt in Ostpreußen, Lübeck 1998 (German)
  • Horst Schulz, Der Kreis Preußisch Eylau, Verden 1983 (German)
  • Miroslaw Mycio, Monografia Miasta Gorowo Ilaweckie, Gorowo 2001

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 54°16′N 20°29′E / 54.267°N 20.483°E / 54.267; 20.483