HISTORY
 

Since the beginning of our statehood, the north-eastern areas of Mazovia have been a property of Mazovian Dukes, however after the incorporation of Mazovia into the Crown (1526) they became the property of the Polish Kings. Royal lands were characterised by not enough fertile, sandy soil , swamps, peatbogs and were covered by thick forests. Therefore the area between the Orzyc River in the west, the Narew River in the south, the Pisa River in the east and Prussian border in the north hasn't been colonised for ages. It doesn't mean that the Green Primeval Forest hasn't been utilised. Exploitation of the forest dates from the 14th-15th century. However it was limited to cutting down trees, floating of t timber down the Narew and Vistula Rivers towards Gdansk and to other forest activities- hunting, keeping of wild forest bees, oreing and primitive wood-distillation. People dealing with these "industries", which were treated by them as seasonal ones, lived outside the forest (in Nowogrod, Ostroleka, Rozan, Przasnysz and neighbouring villages) and cultivated the soil. Since the second half of the 17th century it has beeffsaid about permanent colonisation of Zagajnica. Affluence of people was caused by tremendous damages of the country after "Swedish flood", pestilence, epidemics, crash of farm economy and as a result villein oppression. Escape to not remote but hardly accessible places i.e. the Green Primeval Forest was a certain kind of protest. Starosts of Lomza, Ostroleka and Przasnysz supported colonisation expecting to gain the future profits . On the other hand newcomers gained the status of free people being under the king's authority. They were the only peasant group in the country which had a right to posses a weapon. Contact with the weapon created famous and well known shooting skills as well as bravery and courage in the fights against invaders. Affluence of colonists and clearing of lands in forests caused decline of forest activities. The settlement of that area had lasted to the end of 18th century when the forests villages became overpopulated. The first half of the 19th century brought liquidation of keeping wild forest bees law and cutting down the forests . All these factors caused converse process - emigration "for bread" to the west of Europe and then to America. Not all people emigrated. Inhabitants of Kurpie led not rich but highly efficient and self-sufficient economy. Kurpie was well-known during succeeding patriotic uprisings. Attachment to freedom, skills of using weapons made Kurpie Rifle Brigades most distinguish during the Kosciuszko and November Insurrections. Inhabitants of the Myszyniec Primeval Forest supported commander-in-chief Zygmunt Padlewski during the January Insurrection (the battle of Myszyniec). The region suffered serious losses because of warfare during the First World War and met further adversities (removals, contributions, wasteful exploitation) during the Second World War. Slow but systematic changes have improved a lot of spheres of Kurpie life since mid 50's. It relates to both construction industry, agricultural engineering, education and general standard of living of an average Kurpie family. Utilisation of natural and cultural advantages of the region enables to improve economic conditions of its inhabitants.


KALENDARIUM

10000 years BC - the oldest traces of man's settlements in the vicinity of Ostrołęka.
12th cent. - first Mazovian settlers came to the environs of Ostrołęka. A defensive borough was founded at the spot where the present day Ostroa is located.
1373 - Ostrołęka was bestowed urban rights.
1393 - the first written notice about the county of Ostrołęka
Turn of 14th cent. - The village of Troszyn was founded.
14th-15th cent. - the beginning of settlement in the Kurpie Forest (or Green Forest) and its exploitation.
1398 - the village of Czerwin was founded.
1399 - a parish was created in Ostrołęka.
14 /15th cent. - the village of Kleczkowo was founded (district of Troszyn). In 16th cent. it received the urban rights, but due to the lack of good conditions for development, lost it soon.
1526 - the Mazovia Region was joined to the Polish Kingdom. Ostrołęka became the royal town; 'the golden period' in the town's history began and continued till the great plague and fire in 1563.
Mid 17th cent. - Jesuits built the missionary chapel in the virgin forest in order to face the influence of Protestantism from Prussia. It was the cradle of the future town of Myszyniec.
1656 - detachments from Kurpie fought against Swedish military forces. Ostrołęka was captured.
1666 -Bernardine brethren arrived in Ostrołęka. They stayed in the town till the dissolution of the convent in 1864.
1673 - the village of Lipniki was founded. The Kurpie Region was inhabited by about 1000 people at that time.
1673 - 83 - bee-keeping files mentioned new villages: Kadzidło, Wach, Zawady and Obierwia.
18th cent. - Ostrołęka and the Virgin Forest were devastated by the Swedish, Russian, Saxon and Polish troops marching through that region.
22/23.01.1708 - a battle between the Kurpie people and the Swedish was fought near Kopański Most. Stach Konwa - later well-known hero- took an important part in it.
1791 - Myszyniec received municipal authority. Lost it in 1869 and regained in 1993.
1794 -Wielkopolske National Cavalry under command of mp brigadier Antoni Madaliński,
left Ostrołęka for Cracow. It speeded up the Kościuszko Uprising.
1795 - the county under the Prussian government was included in Neweastern Prussia. At that time 51.432 inhabitants lived there.
1807 - a battle between the French and the Russian armies was fought near Ostrołęka. The name Ostrołęka was engraved on the Triumphal Arch in commomeration of the Victory of the French. Since then the county belonged to Warsaw Principality
1815 - since then the county belonged to the Polish Kingdom.
1820 - 26 000 inhabitants lived in Kurpie.
26.05.1831 - a battle between tsar and Polish armies in Ostrołęka; The Russians won. Lieutenant- colonel Józef Bem won fame in that battle.
1848 - the writer Wiktor Gomulicki the author of 'Memories of the blue Uniform' was born in Ostrołęka .
Turn of 19th cent. - Kurpie inhabitants and impoverished by the uporising gentry started migrating to Ostrołęka attracted by the erection of the first tenement houses, a rainway station, a prizon, brickworks and barreck.
1893 - 97 - railway tracks connected Ostrołęka and the county with Małkinia, Łapy and Tłuszcz.
1915 -While retreating in fear of the Germans, the Russians burnt Ostrołęka. German occupants electrified the town, and having captured the northern part of Mazovia, built a narrow-gauged railway system which helped them to transport wood.
1918 - Poland regained independence. The county was added to Bialystok Province and in 1939 to Warsaw province.
6/7.0.1920 - the Red Army captured Ostrołęka.
1939-44 - during the war the Kurpie part of the county belonged to the German Reich; south-western part belonged to German - Occupied Poland and the south-eastern to the USSR (till 1941).
September 1944 - January 1945 - the Red Army captured the Ostrołęka County.
1951 - 74 - the heat and power station, cellulose and paper manufacture and meat factory were built in Ostrołęka.
1954 - administrative reform; common national councils were created..
1973 - administrative reform; districts were estabished.
1975 - liquidation of counties; Ostrołęka became the seat of Ostrołęka Province.
1999 - counties were re-established Ostrołęka has become the seat of the country.

 
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