Lwów Voivodeship

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For the medieval / early modern voivodeship of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth with the capital in Lwów, see Ruthenian Voivodeship.
Lwów Voivodeship
Województwo lwowskie
Voivodeship of Poland

1920–1939
 

 

Location of Lwów
Lwów Voivodeship (dark blue) on the map of Second Polish Republic
Capital Lwów
Government Voivodeship
Voivodes
 •  1921–1924 Kazimierz Grabowski
 •  1937–1939 Alfred Biłyk
Historical era Interwar period
 •  Established 23 December 1920
 •  Annexed and divided September 1939
 •  Underground administration abolished August 1944
Area
 •  1921 27,024 km2 (10,434 sq mi)
 •  1939 28,402 km2 (10,966 sq mi)
Population
 •  1921 2,718,014 
Density 100.6 /km2  (260.5 /sq mi)
 •  1931 3,126,300 
Political subdivisions 27 powiats
Today part of Ukraine, Poland

Lwów Voivodeship (Polish: Województwo lwowskie) was an administrative unit of interwar Poland (1918–1939). Because of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, it ceased to exist in September 1939, following the German and Soviet conquest of Poland. The Polish underground administration however, existed until August 1944.

Population[edit]

Its capital, biggest and most important city was Lwów (now: Lviv in Ukraine). It consisted of 27 powiats (counties), 58 towns and 252 villages. In 1921 it was inhabited by 2,789,000 people. Ten years later, this number rose to 3,126,300 (which made it the most populous of all Polish Voivodeships). In 1931, the population density was 110 per km². The majority of the population (57%) was Polish, especially in western counties. Ukrainians (mainly in the east and south-east) made up about 33% and Jews (mainly in towns) - around 7%. Also, there were smaller communities of Armenians, Germans and other nationalities. In 1931, the illiteracy rate of the Voivodeship's population lingering from the century of foreign rule was 23.1%, about the same as national average and, at the same time, the lowest in the Polish Eastern Borderlands.[1]

As a reaction to events in Germany, an edict of the Polish Commmonwealth (published on 10 January 1939 in the Ilustrowany Kurier Codzienny) changed the names of several villages located in Drohobycz County of Lwów Voivodeship. These villages were mostly inhabited by German settlers, who came there during Austrian rule, and the Polish government decided to get rid of their German names. Josefsberg became Korośnica (now Korosnytsia), Königsau became Równe (now Rivne), Gassendorf was changed into Uliczne Małe, Ugartsberg became Wypuczko (Vypuchki), and Neudorf was changed into Polminowice (now Nove Selo).

Location and area[edit]

The Voivodeship's area was 28,402 square kilometres (10,966 sq mi). It was located in southeastern Poland, bordering Czechoslovakia to the south, Kraków Voivodeship to the west, Lublin Voivodeship to the north and Volhynian Voivodeship, Stanisławów Voivodeship and Tarnopol Voivodeship to the east. Landscape was hilly (in the north) and mountainous (in the south, along the Czechoslovakian border, with numerous spas located there, such as Slawsko). Forest covered 23.3% of the Voivodeship area (January 1, 1937 statistics; with the national average of 22.2%).

Cities and counties[edit]

Lwów, the voivodeship's capital, was by far its biggest city, with the population of 318,000 (as of 1939). It was also the biggest city in south-eastern Poland and the third biggest city in the country (after Warsaw and Łódź), before Kraków (259,000). Other important centers in the voivodeship were: Przemyśl (in 1931 pop. 51,000), Borysław (pop. 41,500), Drohobycz (pop. 32,300), Rzeszów (pop. 27,000), Jarosław (pop. 22,200), Sambor (pop. 22,000), Sanok (pop. 14,300) and Gródek Jagielloński (pop. 12,900).

Counties of the Lwów Voivodeship[edit]

Administrative division of Lwów Voivodeship, 1938
  • Bobrka county (area 891 km² pop. 97 100),
  • Brzozów county (area 684 km² pop. 83 200),
  • Dobromil county (area 994 km² pop. 94 000),
  • Drohobycz county (area 1,499 km² pop. 194 400),
  • Gródek Jagielloński county (area 889 km² pop. 85 000),
  • Jarosław county (area 1,337 km² pop. 148 000),
  • Jaworów county (area 977 km² pop. 86 800),
  • Kolbuszowa county (area 873 km² pop. 69 600),
  • Krosno county (area 934 km² pop. 113 400),
  • Lesko county (area 1,832 km² pop. 111 600),
  • Lubaczów county (area 1,146 km² 87 300),
  • city of Lwów county (powiat lwowski grodzki - area 67 km², pop. 312 200),
  • Lwów county (area 1,276 km² pop. 142 800),
  • Łańcut county (area 889 km² pop. 97 700),
  • Mościska county (area 755 km² pop. 89 500),
  • Nisko county (area 973 km² pop. 64 200),
  • Przemyśl county (area 1,002 km² pop. 162 500),
  • Przeworsk county (area 415 km² pop. 61 400),
  • Rawa Ruska county (area 1,401 km² pop. 122 100),
  • Rudki county (area 670 km² pop. 79 200),
  • Rzeszów county (area 1,270 km² pop. 185 100),
  • Sambor county (area 1,133 km² pop. 133 800),
  • Sanok county (area 1,282 km² pop. 114 200),
  • Sokal county (area 1,324 km² pop. 109 100),
  • Tarnobrzeg county (area 949 km² pop. 72 200),
  • Turka county (area 1,829 km² pop. 114 400),
  • Żółkiew county (area 1,111 km² pop. 95 500).

Railroads and industry[edit]

Interwar Poland was unofficially divided into two parts - Poland "A" (better developed) and Poland "B" (less developed). Lwów Voivodeship was located on the boundary line of these, with two main centres - the city of Lwów itself and the rich in oil southern region of Borysław and Drohobycz.[citation needed]

Starting in the mid-1930s, the Polish government decided to start a massive public works project, known as Centralny Okreg Przemyslowy (COP). The project covered western counties of the Voivodeship, where several factories were constructed (a steel mill in newly created city of Stalowa Wola, an aircraft engine and artillery factory in Rzeszów, as well as an armament factory in Sanok). This was a huge boost for overpopulated rural areas, where unemployment was high. The project was still incomplete at the beginning of the Second World War.

The railroad network was well-developed only in the area of Lwów, as the city itself was an important hub with as many as eight lines coming from it. Apart from this, some counties (like Kolbuszowa, Brzozów or Jaworów) lacked rail connections, while others (Lesko, Lubaczów, Rudki, Stary Sambor) were greatly underdeveloped. Other rail hubs were Rawa Ruska, Rzeszów, Rozwadów, Sambor, Drohobycz, Przeworsk, Chodorów, and Przemyśl.

As for January 1, 1938, total length of railroads within Voivodeship's boundaries was 1,534 kilometers, which was 5.4 km. per 100 km².

Mother tongue in Poland, based on the 1931 Polish census (original)

Voivodes[edit]

September 1939 and its aftermath[edit]

Following the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and the subsequent Russo-German conquest of Poland, the voivodeship was divided by the victors in late September 1939. The western part of the voivodeship was annexed by Germany and added to the General Government, while the eastern part (including the city of Lwów) was incorporated into the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic. After July 1941, Lwów and the eastern part were occupied by Germany and also added to the General Government; the Polish underground administration existed there until August of 1944. In 1945, when Poland's current borders were established, the western part of former Lwów Voivodeship (to the San river) was organized into the newly created Rzeszów Voivodeship; this territory has been part of the Subcarpathian Voivodeship since 1999.

The remaining eastern part became Ukraine's Lviv Oblast.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Województwo lwowskie. 1920-1939". KALENDARIUM. Grodek Jagiellonski. Retrieved April 15, 2012. 
  • Maly rocznik statystyczny 1939, Nakladem Glownego Urzedu Statystycznego, Warszawa 1939 (Concise Statistical Year-Book of Poland, Warsaw 1939).

Coordinates: 49°50′05″N 24°01′41″E / 49.834834°N 24.027997°E / 49.834834; 24.027997