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The Missing Historical Buildings of Strzelce

rysunki: Leszek Włodkowski-Moszej

The settlement

GrodziskoThe probable place where the pre-charter settlement called “Strelci” was located is in the northeastern part of today's city. The armed raid of prince Przemysł destroyed the castle and the settlement in 1272. Its name was associated with archers, a hunting house or a hunting and entertainment place, or a residence of prince’s archers. Originally there was a Slavic defensive castle near the settlement, reconstructed later on, which served the margrave Conrad as a castle, with a view to controlling the busy communication route. There is no information on the reconstruction of the damaged “castrum”. However, the name “Strzelcze” was mentioned in the letters of Jan Długosz from the 15th century.

The medieval Town Hall


The medieval Town Hall was built in the 15th century as a two-story construction, covered with a ceramic, gabled roof. The building was probably turned towards the church. Market stalls adjoined the edifice. The building was in a bad technical condition in the second half of the 15th century and therefore, it was decided to build a new seat for the authorities. From the written mention dating back to 1702, it is known that at the market square, relics of the old, medieval town hall existed, which was then a pharmacy called “the old town hall”. Its owner was Christian Freund, who purchased the object from a doctor- Erasmus Corvinus. In the mid 1700s, the building was changed into “a vineyard cellar”, belonging to another pharmacist. In 1838, during redevelopment works at the market, the remnants of the first town hall were removed.

The modern Town Hall


The building was erected in the years 1600-1602 within the market, alongside the remnants of the medieval Town Hall. The ceremony of blessing of the building was held on 5 September 1602. The Town Hall is visible in the paintings of contemporary Strzelce by Matthew Marian the elder and Daniel Petzold. This two-story high object was half-timbered, with a cellar, a gabled roof with roof tiles, and a little bell. Above the entrance, there was an inscription: “Curia dat curas, a curis curia dicta”. According to a description, the technical condition of the building in 1716 buildings was bad. The description enumerates some of its equipment: an armchair of the Town Council dating back from 1593, a candlestick made of deer’s antlers from with the image of Holy Mary with iron chains, a standard of length measurement- an ell, a sundial, the judge’s sword and fire-fighting equipment. Finally, the building was pulled down in 1727 year leaving parts of it for the garrison guards and the pharmacy.

The Gorzów Gate


The Gorzów Gate, also called the Brzoza Gate, was erected in the first half of the 1400s on the western side of the town presumably in the place of an earlier gate. It was a rectangular Tower with a sharp-arched, closed crossing. The gate was built of stone, ceramic brick and calcareous mortar. Primarily, a pyramidal cupola, pulled down in 1711, replaced with a hipped-gable roof, covered the building. On the outer side of the fortifications, it was reinforced with a gorge and a fore gate. One can see the landmark in the town’s panoramas made by Materusz Merian the Elder (prior to 1652) and Daniel Petzold (1710-1715). The three-story gate was ornamented with a composition of narrow, sharp-arched blendes in the second and third story. The crossing was protected from the western side with a grating mounted on a runner put in a niche. The building was pulled down gradually. In 1821, the exterior part, including the house of the gate writers was knocked down. Finally, due to wheel-traffic problems and declining technical condition, the tower of the Gorzów Gate was pulled down in 1866.

The Augustinian monastery


The Augustinian monastery was located southeastern part of the town (currently ul. Saperów 34). The Augustinians were brought to Strzelce in 1290. The monastery’s buildings were seriously damaged in 1433 as a result of the Hussite raid. In 1437, the order carried out a collection of money for the needs of the rebuilding. During the years of reformation, the monastery’s possessions were secularized. Initially, it belonged to individual owners. In 1552, a sheepfold was established there. In 1616, Nikolas Schubert was given a certificate of ownership of the monastery buildings and the permission to its rebuilding and using them as craftsman’s workshops or a tavern. In the years 1620-1632, the owner of the property was the Town Council. In 1637, a fire destroyed the buildings. In 1712, the buildings served as salt-works and stables

The Augustinian chapel


The Augustinian monks possessed a humble chapel, located in front of the Gorzów Gate. In 1616, it was confirmed that the building really existed. At the time, the owner of the building was Nikolas Schubert, who sold the building the Town Council in 1620. According to Christian Beckmann, in 1712, In front of the Gorzów Gate a damaged, deprived of a roof chapel was located, whose name had already been forgotten.

The archdeaconry


The archdeaconry existed in the Town Since the end of 1200s. The building itself, even though it was first mentioned in the modern period, was a restige of the catholic tahoma and was erected in the late medieval tahoma. It is known that at the back of the edifice tere was a garden and an orchard. In 1684, the building had a thatched roof and remained in poor condition without a renovation.


The girls’ school


For the first time the school was mentioned in 1580. The building was then in the west of the church square. Constantly renovated and modernized, the object was finally pulled down in 1830.

The town’s school


The school was built in 1574, in the frontage of the church square as a half-timbered building, with a gabled, tiled roof. The building had five chambers as flats for the cantor, the organist and the sacristian. In view of the poor technical condition, the building was pulled down in 1766.


The new town’s school


In 1766 a house was purchased in ul. Północna and on the order of the construction site commissioner- Gemmlich, a new school building was created. Part of the costs was covered by the means of the office in charge of Crown property, another part of the money was collected throughout the country. In this place another edifice was built in 1830. During the works, a bricklayer called Schmidt and a carpenter called Butschke were employed. The investment was partly financed by the king. The new building had three classes of the burgher school, two classes of a primary school for boys, an assembly hall and a tied accommodation for the rector. In 1867 the building was supplemented with an additional story for the needs of the gymnasium.


The Jewish school


The Jewish school was built in 1680 and had number 34. The architectural form of the building is unknown.

The Synagogue


The building was erected in 1679. In 1769, the building was in a very poor technical condition, thus, mayor Breckendorff issued an order of its demolition. He wrote that "this mean, wooden construction gives the street a poor appearance". The Jewish Community with twenty three families did not agree with this decision and in 1771 the synagogue was rebuilt.


The Jewish cemetery


The kirkutu was located on the way to Dobiegniew in 1719. The Jewish community paid a special tax for its use in 1859. The Jewish Community in Strzelce was relatively numerous but it did not hold a privileged place in the social structure of the town.


The bath


The bath was located in ul. Mickiewicza, former Łaziebna. In 1697, the bath, in front of which there was a well, was house number nine.


St George’s hospital


St George’s hospital was built in 1300s in front of the Gorzów Gate and was intended to treat the sick of infectious diseases. Some land and a garden also belonged to the hospital. It was rebuilt in 1738. In its vicinity, there was a cemetery. The complex of buildings consisted of modest one-story, half-timbered buildings. The hospital building collapsed in 1910.


St Gertrude’s hospital


St. Gertrude’s hospital was built in in 1300s in front of the Młyńska Gate and was intended to treat the poor and strangers. Some land and a garden also belonged to the hospital. Owing to the Swedish siege, the hospital burnt down in 1642. Its reconstruction started after the 30-year war. The object was ultimately rebuilt in 1741. The complex of buildings consisted of modest one-story, half-timbered buildings.


The garrison's manẽge


The building was erected in 1821 in front of the Gorzów Gate. It was a half-timbered building, covered with a ceramic roof. Additionally, it had a riding arena. The facility served until 1870 when the residing 3rd and 4th squadron of the 10th dragoon regiment left the town. Strzelce have never more been a garrison town. The man?ge was changed into a gym and the riding arena was planted with trees and creating a park.


The fodder storehouse


The fodder storehouse was built in 1726. The building was at the crossroads of ul. Adama Mickiewicza and Zachodnia. The object was built with materials that were left after the Gorzów Gate has been pulled down and from the defensive walls. The building served for the dragoon regiment under the command v. Knobelsdorf. In 1812, a field hospital was organized there for Napoleon Bonaparte’s soldiers. The building burned down in 1854.


The dyeworks


The dyeworks was built at the lake on the way to Drezdenko in the early 1700s. During the 7-year war, the building was destroyed. After the cessation of hostilities, 45 cloth masters received City and Guilds certificates and a permission to reconstruct the dyeworks at the Lake Górne. The building was rebuilt thanks to the generosity of the king in 1764.


The sheepfold


The Town Council of Strzelce erected the sheepfold after 1620. It was a complex of half-timbered houses located to the south of the Gorzów Gate. The sheepfold can be seen on the etching by Mateusz Merian the elder. These are two fenced half-timbered buildings covered with gable roofs. They were destroyed during the 30-year war.


The drying house


The building of the public was erected in 1721. The object was built in front of the Młyńska Gate. The building was destroyed in the fire in 1746 and it was rebuilt two years later.


The windmill


A private person built the windmill of Dutch type in 1713 on the way to Dobiegniew. The building permission was issued by the Prussian king Frederick William I.