The history of Mińsk Mazowiecki
Mińsk Mazowiecki

Picture of Mińsk from first half of XX century.

The history of Mińsk Mazowiecki began in 14th century, and it was related to colonization at northern regions of Czersk Land. When threats of Lihuania disappeared, the colonization developed at eastern part of Mazowsze. Primarily it was concentrated by the rivers and bigger streams. At the time of early medevial age, this region being intensly used by people, included river-basin of upper Mienia (the area located at the route from Czersk - administration head town of south Mazowsze, to Liwo by Liwiec river, further to Bug river, to the strongholds at the river - basin of upper Narew, at Prussia-Jaćwig border)

    At the end of 14th century, rural settlement, named Mińsk, Meńsk and Mińsk began to have a dominating position. The name of this locality comes from the name of Mienia river, with flows south from Mińsk. In year 1416, the part of this locality was purchased by Jan of Gościeńczyce-the knight from Grójec region, who belonged to Prus family. Thanks to his efforts, the prince of Mazowsze, Janusz I, named Old, issued the act on 19th May 1421, with allowed town commune to be located basing on Chełno law. It was one of the first locations at eastern Mazowsze, and it was confirmed and extended in year 1468. The town was granted with the right to have markets on every week (Tuesdays), three fairs (8th of September - Holy Virgin Birthday, 30th of November - St.Andrew`s, 8th of July - St.Kilian`s). After its rights were extended, Mińsk become an important center of Czersk Land, being located at the route from Czersk to Liwo. The number of inhabitants was increasing rapidly, and by the end of 16th century it was equal to ca. 900 persons. The importance of the town was based on development of handicraft and trade. The town was supported by its owners, who adopted Mińscy name. In year 1422, thanks to efforts of Jan of Gościeńczyce the  parish was located in Mińsk and the first wooden church was built. Later fraternities and a parish school were established there, that was one of the best schools at Mazowsze at that time thanks to the efforts of Mińscy family. The importance of this school lasted until beginning of 17th century.
 
  By expansion of properties located around Mińsk, the Mińscy family created a system, with become a base for growth of importance of this family, with was classified as a part of feudal elite in late medieval age. In the second half of 15th century, two sons of Jan of Gościeńczyce belonged to the group of the most eminent dignitaries at Mazowsze: Ścibór was bishop of Płock in period of 1463/64-1471 and Jakub at the end of his life possessed Czersk castellany, that was the most important at the area of this duchy. Peak period of prosperity of Mińscy family appeared at the beginning of 17th century, when Stanisław Miński become the deputy chancellor of the Treasury of king Zygmunt III Waza.
The house in Mińsk.

    16th century was the peak season of town's development. Said century was also the time, when the highest number of town location acts was issued in this part of Mazowsze. In surroundings of Mińsk, civic rights were granted to the localities like: Kuflew (1521), Stanisławów (1523), Siennica (1530), Kołbiel (1532), Okuniew (1538). However thy were not any real competition for Mińsk and they had local importance only (in most cases, they lost they civic rights during the second half of 19th century). In direct proximity of the town, by the right, that is west bank of Srebrna river, another town settlement was created, which was named Sendomierz (Sędomierz, Sandomierz) and it was owned by Wolscy family. In the year 1549, Wolscy were granted with town privilege issued by king Zygmunt August. The competition between these two towns, located so close to each other, didn't last for a long time, because dynamically developing Mińsk incepted Sandomierz. At mid 17th century the town encountered a downfall. Said downfall, witch so much visible after Swedish invasion, appeared in most of Mazowsze towns. For this reasons, the character of the town was changed: Mińsk become an agricultural trade-service center. The number of its inhabitants was reduced in 2/3, that is to some 350 person. At that period, the town was ruled by one or more noble families; the period of Gościeńscy-Mińscy family reign ended in the last years of 16th century. Among further owners of the town and properties of Mińsk, one can mention Leśnowolscy family of Pierzchała crest and Hlebowicze of Leliwa crest. At the beginning of 17th century, Warszyccy family of Awdaniec crest become the owners of the town, who ruled it until the beginning of 18th century. At that time, two other town localities appeared close to Mińsk: Cegłów (1621) and Kałuszyn (1660 or 1718), the latter kept its importance thanks to the location, in a contrary to Cegłów, witch lost its civic rights in year 1869.
 

House in Mińsk from XX century.
In 18th century Mińsk was owned by Opalińscy family of Łodzia crest, Pociejowie of Waga crest and Borzeccy of Półkozice crest. At the end of that century, town met the bottom of its downfall. Piotr Borzecki was even against civic rights for this town. So in year 1790 he prohibited organization of the markets and tried to transform the citizens into village type serf.
 After the break-up of Poland and when Brzescy family left to Petersburg, the properties of Mińsk were sold by tender in Dubno on 2nd November 1807 to Jeziorscy family of Nowina crest, who possessed important posts in the Congress Kingdom of Poland (1815-31)
   Since the beginning of 19th century, economical enlivening slowly appeared at the town its importance grew. In Congress Kingdom of Poland - Mińsk found itself in Stanisławów circuit of Sienno district. Since 1816 it was the seat of Stanisławów circuit administration authorities. In 1842 the circuits were transformed into districts. So, Stanisłwów district appeared with its seat in Mińsk and former Sienno district was liquidated. In year 1867, Mińsk district was established and one year later Russian authorities changed its name to Nowomińsk (name of the town was changed to make it differed from Mińsk at Belorus). Reconstruction of Brześć route positively influenced the development of the town in period of 1818-23.     At that time woollen cloth factory, tanner's and leather-dressing workshops, and distillery were operated at the town. In 1827, Mińsk had 570 inhabitants and the number of people living in Kałuszyn and Latowicz was still greater.
 At the time national insurrections (1830-31 and 1863-64), Mińsk and its surroundings were the area of numerous fightings, skirmishes and marches of insurgent and Russian troops. In 1831, Polish army fought twice (26th of April and 14th of July) against enemy's troops in the town. It was similar in year 1863, When insurgents attacked Czar's troops, witch stayed in Mińsk (in the night of 15/16th of April and 17/18th of May).
   After the January insurrection was over, further development of the town appeared and it was accelerated with start-up of Warsaw-Terespol railway line (1866-67), witch crossed Mińsk and Pilawa-Tłuszcz line (1897), witch was located close to Mińsk. At the end of 19th century the biggest factory, existing until now was established, it was the branch of Joint Stock Company, The Machines and Castings Factory, K. Rudzki and Co. In Warsaw (presently named FUD) - witch produced bridge structures, turbines and artillery missiles and caissons. This Factory gained in international importance thanks to erection of bridge structures in empire of Russia.

House in Mińsk from XX century.

    They were first on the world to use welding in steel structures - according to the method developed by Stephan Baryła the engineer. The first the world welded bridge was erected by factory of Rudzki in year 1924 at Słudwia river close to Łowicz and said bridge can be watched now as the monument of technology and Polish achievements. In 1880, Mińsk had 2940 inhabitants already. Since 1874 it was owned by Doria Dernałowicz family of Lubicz crest, who ruled the properties of Mińsk until 1944. In 1916, name of the town was changed from Nowomińsk to Mińsk Mazowiecki. The same year, on 1st October, south-western borders of the town were expanded to incorporate Goździk village. On 11th November 1918, Mińsk branch of Polish military organization started to disarm German occupation troops. Great input for liberation was brought by the members of volounteer Fire Brigade - the organization witch was established in Mińsk in 1881 already. Durring Polish-Soviet war, the last part of Warsaw battle happened close to Mińsk. On 17th of August 1920, the part of attacking forces of Marshall Józef Piłsudski broke down the resistance of 16th Soviet Army, and got in direct contact with 15th Infantry Division of general W.Jung, with attacked from the area of Warsaw suburbs. On that day Polish troops regained Mińsk Mazowiecki.
 

 House in Mińsk.
In restored Poland, according to general census of 30th of September 1921, the town had 10.518 inhabitants, including 4.130 Jews. The occupations of people mostly included handicraft and trade. Besides the factory of Rudzki, the inhabitants of Mińsk found employment in Metal Industry Works and Folgenest's Works in Stojadła and also in a few small factories at the town, were 1 to 20 persons were employed (sparkling beverages, groats and soap factories, carding workshops, fancy goods factories, mill and cement products works).

    In a period between World War, the improvement in town  in town planing appeared. Municipal electric power generating plant was built (1925-26) and electrical installation was built in great part of the town. Some streets were furnished with hardened pavement. At the end of thirties, new primary school was erected as well as gymnasium, health care center and a building of District Office. Primary and secondary education system was developed and new cultural institutions were established - the libraries and cinemas ("Iluzion", "Polonia"), the section of Mazowsze Cycle-racing Association was very active at that time. The town, witch formerly developed mostly towards south and west, started to expand also towards north and east: in year 1936 new town was quarter was annexed "Miasto-Ogród-Mińsk", municipal gravel-pit, barracks and military rifle-range of 7th Regiment of Lublin Uhlans, as well as colonies, like: Stasinów, Pohulanki C, Pohulanki D.
 

On 13th of September 1939, the operating squad of general W. Anders fought near Mińsk against overwhelming German forces. During the occupation, resistance organizations were active in the town and its surroundings, this included the Home Army, its soldiers performed a successful action on 22nd of July 1943, when they shot Schimdt - the chief of Mińsk gestapo. The town didn't suffer from any special material destructions. However there were great losses in people, mostly due to the holocaust of Jews. Mińsk Mazowiecki was liberated from German occupation by the soldiers of the Home Army, who entered the town before troops of Red Army.
Stone Hause today it's secondary school of Salezjanie.

    After the 2nd World War, the town was developed, and it become an important administration, industry, trade and culture-education center. Mińsk Mazowiecki had 10,5 thousand inhabitants by the end of year 1945, while in 1971 - 24.700. In that period new factories were built (including Railway Stock Repair Works, Mińsk Shoe Works), existing enterprises were modernized. New buildings were built for court and public prosecutor's office, railway station and bus terminal, Deposit- Credit Bank and besides that the hospital was extended. There was a visible improvement in vocational education system. Besides the General Education Secondary School, four complexes of vocational schools were established at the town. The construction of water-supply and sewage systems and extension of housing quarters were the great achievements. The area of the town, witch was equal to 524 hectares in 1950, was increased to 1311 hectares in 1986.
 

House in Minsk.
In June 1975, as the result of administration transformations of the country, Mińsk Mazowiecki was incorporated into new created Siedlce province. Local self-government was restored in1990 and regional offices of state administration were established. Regional Office in Mińsk Mazowiecki covered the area of the town and 13 communes (Cegłów, Dębe Wlk., Dobre, Jakubów, Kałuszyn, Kołbiel, Latowicz, Mińsk Mazowiecki, Siennica, Stanisławów, and Starachówka).