1848-1871 1890-1914
Galicia 1867-1890 Polish National Movement

Province Posen, 1871-1890

C.) Prussian Poland

The Polish deputees in Prussia's diet voted against the Province of Posen's integration in the Northern German Confederation (1867) and into the German Empire (1871) - to no avail. Bismarck therefore regarded Poland's nobility and the nation's Catholic clergy as threatening the state.
In 1871, Bismarck launched the state's attack on the Catholic church, called KULTURKAMPF. In the Province of Posen, the policy was regarded as anti-Polish. Archbishop COUNT LEDOCHOWSKI of Posen was deposed and sentenced to 2 years in prison in 1874. Most higher church officials were imprisoned; many Catholic parishes, for several decades, were without a priest. In 1873, German was proclaimed the exclusive language of education throughout the province, 1876 the exclusive language of the administration, 1877 of the courts.
In 1886 the SETTLEMENT LAW was passed, by which the Reich subsidized the acquisition of farms in Posen by ethnic Germans. With Bismarck's dismission in 1890 the Kulturkampf ended.
In 1885 the population of the province numbered 1,715,618; of whom 1,131,869 were Catholics, 531,722 Protestants, 50,866 Jews; by nationality c. 880,000 Poles, c.725,000 Germans (Meyers).

While many Poles up to 1871 had been loyal citizens of the Prussian state, state policy now stirred them up, turning many into ardent Polish patriots. In 1873 a Polish system of SAVINGS BANKS was established, Peasants' Clubs sprang up.

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A Brief History of Poland during the last 200 years, from genpoland , encyclopedic, many maps
The Awakening of the Polish Nation, 1870-1914, ch.11 from Henry Bogdan, From Warsaw to Sofia
Deutsche Zollgeschichte : Russland, from Deutsche Zollgeschichte, postcards featuring the border between Germany/ German Poland to Russian Poland/Lithuania, commented in German
DOCUMENTS Maps : Posen 1882, West Prussia 1882, from Blackie & Sons Atlas (Edinburgh, 1882), posted by FEEFHS
List of Polish statesmen, from World Statesmen by Ben Cahoon
Posen, Bistum, Provinz (Posen/Poznan, Bishopric, Province), P.1, P.2, from Meyers Konversationslexikon, 1888-1890 edition, in German
REFERENCE Enno Meyer, Grundzüge der Geschichte Polens (Main Features of Polish History), Darmstadt : Wissenschaftliche Buchgemeinschaft 1977
Triloyalism and the National Revival : Prussian Poland, pp.27-35 in : R.F. Leslie (ed.), The History of Poland since 1863, Cambridge : UP (1980) 1989 [G]

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on March 16th 2002, last revised on May 8th 2006

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