History of the city
Hrubieszow – a small town on the edge of Poland. Situated in the southeastern part of the Lublin Voivodeship, it impresses with its distinctive wooden architecture, numerous monuments testifying to the multiculturalism of the place and a clearly discernible borderland atmosphere, while being the farthest easternmost town in Poland.
Since the beginning of its existence, Hrubieszow (historical name Rubieszow) has been ethnically and religiously diverse – Catholics, Orthodox and Jews have lived here side by side for centuries. The intermingling of these cultures had a huge impact on the urban layout of the town’s buildings. The monuments preserved to this day, such as the Orthodox church, unique in Europe, and wooden mansions with their characteristic architectural layout, testify to the multiculturalism of the place and remind us of the turbulent history of more than 600 years that played out in the history of this city.
It is worth mentioning that in the early Middle Ages there was a stronghold here, and then a settlement, belonging to the Prince of Halicko-Vlodzimierski. After the incorporation of these lands into the territory of Poland, Rubieszów soon became a royal domain, and was elevated to the dignity of a city by being granted city rights based on Magdeburg law by the then King of Poland – Wladyslaw Jagiello. The privileging with a charter took place at the castle in Lvov in 1400, thus beginning a new era in the city’s history.
Receiving numerous privileges, Rubieszow very quickly strengthened its political and economic situation, becoming an important center of trade. Being a desirable point on the map of Poland at that time, it was repeatedly attacked and destroyed by hostile Tartar armies, troops of Bohdan Chmielnicki or Rakoczy.
At the beginning of the 19th century, the Hrubieszow estate was purchased by Father Stanislaw Staszic, who in 1816 established the Hrubieszow Agricultural Society here, which was the first cooperative organization in Europe. With this, he initiated the dynamic development of the town, which quickly gained the position of a thriving trade center and one of the main centers of agro-industry in the region. In the mid-19th century. Hrubieszow was the second largest (after Lublin) city in the Lublin Governorate. Among other things, there were meaderies, a brewery, oil mills, vinegar mills, steam and water mills. Among other things, elementary schools and a hospital were established here.
The cultural heritage that the township represents, which has been preserved to the present day, is recognized not only by visiting tourists.
Prominent personalities are associated with the place, such as the world-famous writer Aleksander Glowacki (Boleslaw Prus), who was born here, and who was active in improving the peasants, the reformer of the Enlightenment era, and at the same time the founder of the Hrubieszow Agricultural Society, Rev. Stanislaw Staszic, the constructor of the first calculating machine – Abraham Stern, the poet Boleslaw Lesman (Lesmian), or Prof. Wiktor Zin, who came from Hrubieszow, an excellent architect. Also associated with the city are Major Henryk Dobrzanski “Hubal”, Stefan du Chateau and Henry Orenstain – a Hrubieszow-born entrepreneur of Jewish origin, known, among other things, as the oldest poker player in the world, creator of more than 100 patents, a millionaire and the originator of the well-known cult toys – Transformers.