1813-1870 1919-1939

Part of the German Empire, 1870-1919

In 1871 Danzig, as part of Prussia, became part of the German Empire. In the last decades of the 19th and the first decades of the 20th century, Danzig experienced an economic growth which again caused a rise of the population and an expansion of the settlement. While the traditional grain trade decreased, export trade in other products, such as BEET SUGAR, increased. Of great importance was the import of English coal, of American and Russian petrol, of Swedish iron. Danzig became seat of sugar refineries, the Danzig shipyards converted from the construction of sailboats to that of iron steamers.
Danzig's population, 82,765 in 1861, rose to 108,551 in 1880, 120,338 in 1890, 140,563 in 1900, 170,337 in 1910. The city's revenues also increased considerably. The establishment of municipal waterworks began in 1869. Great effort was undertaken to remodel and extend the port. In 1895-1897, the remainders of the city wall were razed in order to provide space for increasing traffic. A Polytechnic was opened in 1904.
The strong population increase was, to the larger part, the result of immigration. Still, the city retained a predominantly German (Lutheran) character, although sizeable communities of Polish respectively Kaschubian speakers, of Roman Catholics and Jews emerged.

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DOCUMENTS Coat of Arms, from International Civic Heraldry
REFERENCE Erich Keyser, Danzigs Geschichte, (Danzig 1928) Reprint Hamburg : Danziger Verlagsgesellschaft Paul Rosenberg, undated (History of Danzig), 300 pp.
Hans Georg Siegler, Danzig - Chronik eines Jahrtausends (Danzig - Chronicle of a Millennium; a timeline), Düsseldorf : Droste 1990, in German

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on August 12th 2002, last revised on November 11th 2004

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