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Polska / śląskie

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Province:śląskie / inne (before 1939)
County:gliwicki / Landkreis Tost-Gleiwitz (before 1939)
Community:Sośnicowice / Kieferstädtel (before 1939)
Other names:Kieferstädtel [j. niemiecki]
50.2723° N / 18.5299° E
50°16'20" N / 18°31'47" E


Andrew Rajcher

The town of Sośnicowice lies in the Gliwice District, in the western part of the Sląsk province. It is situated in the Silesian Uplands, between the Kłodnice and Bierawka rivers.



Adam Marczewski

Archiwalne zdjęcie cmentarza żydowskiego w Sośnicowicach | Adam Marczewski

During the First Silesian War in 1742, most of Silesia found itself under the control of the Kingdom of Prussia [excluding Cieszyn Silesia (Śląsk Cieszyński) and Duchy of Opawa]. The Silesian Jews welcomed the Prussian rule with a great hope for a better life. A Jewish historian Marcus Brann described the contemporary mood of the public as follows: the young Prussian king, who entered Silesia in December, met there with oppressed Jews who were full of hope that a ray of justice and clemency would finally brighten the dark paths of their lives.

At first, the Prussian authorities treated the Silesian Jews in an indifferent way, but in time, Emperor Frederick II began to strive to limit the freedom of the Jewish community. The goal was to be achieved by various financial taxes, thanks to which the country was economically successful.
The Kingdom of Prussia announced its first regulation concerning Jews in 1748. By virtue of the document, all the Jews who had lived in Silesia for at least one year were supposed to pay 10 percent of their property’s value in case they emigrated from the country. Special restrictions were imposed on those Jews who did not succeed in their business. Those who went bankrupt or were found guilty of handling stolen goods lost the right to live in Silesia and had to leave the country.

On 17 April 1750, the Prussian authorities issued the Main Prussian Regulations and General Privileges, which defined the legal, social, political and economic situation of the Jews. Jacob Jacobson wrote abut the regulations in the following way: As everywhere else in Germany, also the Main Regulations were so constructed as to keep the number of Jews living in the country in certain limits, to let them run strictly determined businesses within the state economic system and to impose on them the highest taxes for protection and for tolerating their stay.
The most important law regulating the status of Jews in Silesia (except Wrocław and Głogów) was the so-called “Juden Reglement” issued on 2 December 1751. A duty to report to the district authority office and the royal tolerance office any case of Jewish settlement within 14 days was imposed on landowners and town halls. In this way, a system that controlled the influx of Jews into Silesia was created. Besid


Local history

Andrew Rajcher

Sośnicowice w 1932 roku | nieznany

The village of Sośnicowice was founded prior to 1281 . However, the first mention of the settlement dates back to 1305. Perhaps even before 1305,  Sośnicowice attained city-status, however historical documents indicate that this occured in 1526.

During the Thirty Years' War in the 17th Century, the town and its surroundings were looted. 

During the Seven Years' War (1756-1763), the town was occupied and destroyed by the Prussian, Austrian and Russian armies. In the end, Sośnicowice was linked, together with Silesia, to Prussia

In the middle of the 18th Century, iron ore mining commenced in the area and a huge smelter was located in Sośnicowice. In 1768 and1780, the town was destroyed by huge fires. In 1808, Sośnicowice lost its city-status.

During the inter-War period, in 1921, a referendum was conducted in which the inhabitants of Sośnicowice  voted to remain as part of Germany  (555 votes for Germany and 150 votes for Poland). During the Third Silesian Uprising in 1921, the village took the side of Poland. However, the Allies decided that it should remain as part of Germany.

During World War II, in January 1945, Sośnicowice was occupied by the Soviet army. The village was then connected with Poland. In 1996, Sośnicowice regained its city-status.


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