The Upper Lusatian lords of Penzig, the Herren von Penzig, are first recorded in 1241. Besides Penzig in Upper Lusatia the family held a number of other towns and territories on both banks of the Neiße river. In 1491 the city of Görlitz purchased the Penziger Heide (parts of the territory of Penzig) and combined it as Görlitzer Heide with its own communal territory.
In 1945 the Oder-Neiße line became the dividing line between Germany and Poland, leaving Penzig, now Piensk, in Poland. The native German populace was expelled and replaced with Poles.