Sosnowiec, Poland

Sosnowiec was the home of the Szapiro family from the period 1870-1880 until the Holocaust. Mendel Szapiro made his home at 23/9 Oderstrasse, Sosnowiec.

The map below (from the 1911 edition of the Encyclopędia Britannica) shows Poland on the Eastern edge of the Russian Empire. The city is located in the Southwest corner of Poland, quite near both the German and Austrian borders. Because of its position on the three borders, Sosnowiec was a well known transit point between the three Empires. A main rail route from Berlin to Vienna crossed here. If you look carefully, you will see that the pre-World War I borders of Russian Poland are quite different from those of the Polish Republic established in 1919. The major Polish cultural, religious and political center of Krakow was then located within the Austrian Empire.

Sosnowiec
town, Katowice województwo (province), southern Poland. It lies along the Czarna Przemsza River, which is a tributary of the Vistula. A rail junction in the Silesian Upland, Sosnowiec has numerous heavy-industrial plants, coal mines, textile mills, and glassworks. It also possesses Poland's first mining museum, which has some 5,000 exhibits. A castle was built in Sosnowiec in the 17th century. The town was rebuilt after a disastrous fire in 1830 and began to prosper with the building of the Warsaw-Vienna rail line in 1845. It had become an industrial centre by the end of the 19th century. Town rights were acquired in 1902. Pop. (1993 est.) 251,300.

"Sosnowiec" Encyclopędia Britannica Online.
[Accessed January 6 2001].

Detail map of Sosnowiec and the
borders of the Russian, German 
and Austrian Empires in 1911.
National Geographic map of the
German-Polish border
in 1944. 
Sosnowiec is just above and east
of the center of the map.
Contemporary maps of Sosnowiec,
Poland
. From the website of the 
City of Sosnowiec,
History and information on present
day Sosnowiec
from the City website

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Last Modified: 2:00 PM on January 14, 2001