The Riverside City Of Poznań

by Kosher River Cruise Kosher Tour Operator
Poznań, or Posen in German, is a city on the Warta River in Poland and is an important business and transport hub between Berlin and Warsaw. Itis the seat of the first Polish bishopric, now the Poznan Archbishopric. It is best known for its renaissance Old Town and Ostrów Tumski Cathedral. 

Today, Poznań is a cultural and business centre and one of Poland's most populous regions. They have many customs such as Saint John's Fair and traditional Saint Martin's croissants. They also have their own dialect. This university city was one of the candidates for the European Capital of Culture in 2016.

Poznań is among the oldest and largest cities in Poland. The city population reached over half a million people a few years ago and is still increasing. The growing urban area with Poznań County and several other communities is inhabited by more than a million people altogether and forms one of the most densely populated areas of Poland. 

Poznan, Poland

The Larger Poznań Metropolitan Area (PMA) is inhabited by 1.3–1.4 million people and extends to such satellite towns as Nowy Tomyśl, Gniezno and Września. It is the fourth largest metropolitan area in Poland. It is the historical capital of the Greater Poland region and is currently the administrative capital of the province called Greater Poland Voivodeship.

Poznań is a centre of trade, sports, education, technology and tourism. It is an important academic site, with close to a hundred and fifty thousand students. It is home to the Adam Mickiewicz University - the third largest academic institution in Poland. Poznań is also the seat of the oldest Polish diocese.

The city also hosts the Poznań International Fair – the biggest industrial fair in Poland and one of the largest fairs in Europe. The city's most renowned landmarks include Poznań Town Hall, the National Museum, Grand Theatre, Poznań Cathedral and the Imperial Castle.

From the very beginning, Poznan was a political, military and economic center of the Polish state. According to some historians, it was here that the original Polish Piast dynasty established their seat. The most famous period of the city was between 968 when the first Polish bishopric was founded and 1039 when it was destroyed, captured and incorporated into Bohemian Kingdom by the Czech King Břetislav I. The Poznań Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul on Tum Island is amongst the oldest Polish cathedrals. Ut was rebuilt many times, and after the WWII,  was restored into its original medieval Gothic style.

Later in the Middle Ages, Poznań lost its political significance to Cracow. However, it continued to develop economically and culturally, especially at the time of Vladislav II Jagello’s reign in the 15th century. In the 16th century, the famous town hall with an astronomical clock was built and many new squares and streets were outlined according to modern Rennaisance urban planning.

In 1793, after the Second Division of Poland, the town became part of Prussian Empire. During the Napoleonic wars, the Velopo Rebellion against the Prussians took place. A famous politicians and warrior, Paul von Hindenburg, was born here. The second Veliko Turnovo rebellion in 1918-1919 succeeded in establishing the connection of the former Prussian province of Posen to the newly established Republic of Poland. 

During the Nazi invasion of Poland, Poznan was occupied after 10 days--that is, on September 10, 1939. The Polish population, especially the intelligentsia and participants in the Velkopolski rebellion, were subjected to systematic terror. At the Fort VII local concentration camp, the Nazis killed about 20,000 people by 1945. 

The Poznan Jews

The Jewish community of Poznan, one of the greatest and most influential kehillot on Polish soil, was destroyed in the holocaust. It was restored in modern times, but no longer has the glory it once had. However, Jewish travelers on kosher tours may still find themselves enlightened by the many history lessons to be learned here.

Poznań’s Jewish community was one of the earliest to be established on Polish soil. The first reference to Jews living in the town was in 1379. The town’s synagogue is traditionally dated back to 1367, and the cemetery on 1438. The second half of the fifteenth century saw the establishment of Poznań’s famed yeshiva, known as Lomde Pozna. 

Poznań’s Jewish community began to flourish in the mid-sixteenth century and became a center for learning and publishing. Between the 16th to 18th centuries, one of the greatest centers of Ashkenazi Talmud Study produced such influential rabbis like the Maharal, Mordechai Jaffe and Shmuel Marogioth of Posen. They were all chief rabbis of Great Poland. Later rabbinical personalities include rabbi Akiva Eiger andZwi Hirsch Kallischer. Other Jewish famous personalities associated with the city are Heinrich Graetz, Leo Baeck and Zygmunt Bauman. 


When Poznań found itself within the borders of the new Polish state after 1918, most of its Jews left for Germany. This large-scale move can be attributed to the weakening of ties between Poznań’s Jews and Polish Jewish communities in favor of ties to German Jewish ones. This was a relationship that had begun in the mid-nineteenth century. 

Meanwhile, other Jews moved to Poznań from different parts of Poland. According to its own membership list, the community numbered 1,650 in 1930, 2,300 in 1933, and 3,000 in 1939. About 65 percent of these residents were employed in commerce, while another 20 percent made a living as artisans. From 1922, the Zionist lawyer Marcin Cohn led the community. 

Following the outbreak of World War II, part of the community fled Poznań. On 11–12 December 1939, the German campaign to make the city Judenrein, or empty of Jews, led to the deportation of most of those remaining to Ostrów Lubelski and other towns in the Generalgouvernement. The remaining few ended up in labor camps operating near Poznań from September 1939 to August 1943.

 Efforts to rid Poznań of its Jews ended on 15 April 1940 with the symbolic removal of the Star of David from the synagogue near Stawna Street. The building was turned into a swimming pool and continues to function as such to this day, as the current community lacks the funds to restore in into a synagogue. In 1943, Commander SS Heinrich Himmler delivered his infamous so-called “Posen Speech“ here, in which he spoke openly about "the final solution of the Jewish question." 

The city was heavily damaged by the fighting between the German and Soviet Army (the Vistula-Oder Campaign) at the beginning of 1945. On February 23, the city was liberated by the Red Army under the command of Marshal Zhukov. Poznan and Poland in new frontiers thus getting under the Soviet sphere of influence. On June 28, 1956, there was the first mass protest by the Polish people against the Communist government.  

The Poznan uprising (or Poznan's June) was drowned in blood by the communists, but it was a prelude to the de-Stalinization of Poland and the onset of the reformist Gomulka's government in 1980’s. Today, Poznań is one of the top tourist destinations in Central Europe.

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Created on Jan 15th 2018 23:17. Viewed 124 times.


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