Koszalin, Poland
Town Hall

Coat of arms
Koszalin, Poland is located in Poland
Koszalin, Poland
Coordinates: 54°11′N 16°11′E / 54.183°N 16.183°E / 54.183; 16.183
Country  Poland
Voivodeship West Pomeranian
County city county
Established 11th century
Town rights 1266
 – Mayor Piotr Jedliński
 – Total 98.33 km2 (38 sq mi)
Elevation 32 m (105 ft)
Population (30th-June-2009)
 – Total 107,146
 – Density 1,089.7/km2 (2,822.2/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 – Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 75-900, 75-902, 75-007, 75-016
Area code(s) +48 94
Car plates ZK
Website http://www.koszalin.pl

Koszalin [kɔˈʂalin] ( listen) Kashubian: Kòszalëno; (German: Köslin [kœsˈliːn]; Latin: Cussalin) is the largest city of Middle Pomerania in north-western Poland. It is located 12 km south of the Baltic Sea coast. Koszalin is also a county-status city and capital of Koszalin County of West Pomeranian Voivodeship since 1999. Previously, it was a capital of Koszalin Voivodeship (1950–1998).



Middle Ages

Koszalin is first mentioned in 1108 in the Chronicle of Greater Poland (Kronika Wielkopolska) describing that duke Boleslaw Krzywousty has captured and subjugated multiple Pomeranian cities including Kołobrzeg, Kamień, Wolin and Koszalin Colibregensium, quam Caminensium, Veolinensium, Cosoniensium et munitissimarum alliarum. Although the name Cosoniensium seams to be corrupt and questioned by some researchers, the city is identified with Koszalin by top historians including Józef Spors, W.Kowalenko, B.Kurbisówna and Martin Wehrmann.

In 1214 Bogislaw II, Duke of Pomerania, made a donation of a village known as Koszalice/Cossalitz by Chełmska Hill in Kołobrzeg Land (una villa ... Cussalitz iuxta Cholin in terra Cholbergensis) to the Premonstratensian (Norbertine) monastery in Białoboki (Belbuck) near Trzebiatów (Treptow an der Rega). New, mostly German, settlers from outside of Pomerania were invited to settle the territory. In 1248 the eastern part of Kołobrzeg Land, including the village, was transferred by Duke Barnim I to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Kammin.[1]

On 23 May 1266, Kammin bishop Hermann von Gleichen granted a charter to the village Cussalin, giving it Lübeck law, local government, autonomy and multiple privileges; it became known in German as Cöslin. When in 1276 the bishops became the sovereign in neighboring Kołobrzeg, they moved their residence there, while the administration of the diocese was done from Koszalin.[1]

The city obtained direct access to the Baltic Sea when it gained the village of Jamno (1331), parts of Lake Jamno (Jamunder See, now Jezioro Jamno), a spit between the lake and the sea and the castle of Nest (now Unieście) (1353). Thence, Cöslin participated in the Baltic Sea trade as a member of the Hanseatic League, which led to several conflicts with the competing seaports of Kolberg (Kołobrzeg) and Rügenwalde (Darłowo). From 1356 until 1417/1422, the city was part of the Duchy of Pomerania-Wolgast.

Modern Age

Coat of arms of Cöslin from ca. 1400-1800, showing the head of John the Baptist.

In 1534 during the Protestant Reformation, Cöslin became Lutheran under the influence of Johannes Bugenhagen. In 1568, Johann Friedrich, Duke of Pomerania and bishop of Cammin, started constructing a residence.[2] After the 1637 death of the last Pomeranian duke, Bogislaw XIV, Cöslin passed to his cousin, Bishop Ernst Bogislaw von Croÿ of Kammin. Occupied by Swedish troops during the Thirty Years' War, the city was granted to Brandenburg-Prussia after the Treaty of Westphalia (1648) and the Treaty of Stettin (1653), and with all of Farther Pomerania became part of the Brandenburgian Pomerania.

Part of the Kingdom of Prussia since its foundation in 1701, Cöslin was heavily damaged by a fire in 1718, but was rebuilt in the following years. It was occupied by French troops in 1807 after the War of the Fourth Coalition. Following the Napoleonic wars, the city became the capital of Fürstenthum District (county) and Regierungsbezirk Cöslin (government region) within the Province of Pomerania. The Fürstenthum District was dissolved on 1 September 1872 and replaced with the Cöslin District on December 13.

Coat of arms of Köslin from 1800-1939

Cöslin became part of the German Empire in 1871 during the unification of Germany. The railroad from Stettin (Szczecin) through Cöslin and Stolp (Słupsk) to Danzig (Gdańsk) was constructed from 1858-78. A military cadet school created by Frederick the Great in 1776 was moved from Kulm (Chełmno) to Cöslin in 1890. In the 1920s during the Weimar Republic, the spelling of the city's name was changed from Cöslin to Köslin. The city was detached from Köslin District on 1 April 1923, becoming an urban district.

After the Nazis had closed down Dietrich Bonhoeffer's seminar in Finkenwerder in 1937, Bonhoeffer chose Köslin as one of the sites where he illegally continued to educate vicars of the Confessing Church.[3] This seminar was located in the Superintendentur building and actively supported by local Superintendent Onnasch and his son.[3] During the Second World War Köslin was the site of the first school for the rocket troops created on orders of Walter Dornberger, the Wehrmacht's head of the V-2 design and development program.[4]

After World War II

On 4 March 1945, Köslin was occupied by the Soviet Union. According to the post-war Potsdam Agreement, the city was placed under Polish administration and renamed Koszalin. Most of the German population fled or was expelled to post-war Germany. The city was resettled by Poles from Central and pre-war Eastern Poland and Kashubians.

Initially, the city was considered to become the capital of the voivodeship created from the former German province east of the Oder-Neisse line, which nevertheless was assigned to Szczecin (Szczecin voivodeship, 1945–1950). In 1950 this voivodeship was divided into a truncated Szczecin Voivodeship and Koszalin Voivodeship.

In years 1950-75 Koszalin was the capital of the enlarged Koszalin Voivodeship sometimes called Middle Pomerania (out of 17 voivodeships total) due to becoming the fastest growing city in Poland. In years 1975-98 it was the capital of the smaller Koszalin Voivodeship (out of 49 total).

As a result of the Local Government Reorganization Act (1998) Koszalin was assigned to become part of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship (effective 1 January 1999) regardless of an earlier proposal for a new Middle Pomeranian Voivodeship covering approximately the area of former Koszalin Voivodeship (1950–75).


Before World War II the population of the town was composed of Protestants, Jews and Catholics.

Number of inhabitants in years 1740-1925
  • 1740: 2,535[5]
  • 1782: 2,933; incl. 47 Jews.[5]
  • 1791: 3071, incl. 47 Jews[6]
  • 1794: 3,286; incl. 47 Jews.[5]
  • 1812: 3,802; incl. 13 Catholics and 28 Jews.[5]
  • 1816: 4,636; incl. 17 Catholics and 60 Jews.[5]
  • 1831: 6,541; incl. 50 Catholics and 104 Jews.[5]
  • 1843: 8,114; incl. 78 Catholics and 210 Jews.[5]
  • 1852: 9,398; incl. 61 Catholics and 242 Jews.[5]
  • 1861: 11,303; incl. 113 Catholics and 278 Jews.[5]
  • 1900: 20,417 (with the military), incl. 597 Catholics and 251 Jews.[7]
  • 1925: 28,810; incl. 700 Catholics, 170 Jews and 1,050 others.[8]
Number of inhabitants in years since 1905
Year 1905 1939 1945[9] 1950 1960 1970 1975 1980 1990 1999 2002 2003 2006 2009
Population 21,474 33,500 17,000 18,900 44,400 65,200 77,600 93,500 108,700 112,375 108,480 107,877 106,125 107,217


The city borders on Chełmska hill (German: Gollenberg), a site of pagan worship in prehistory, and upon which is now built the tower "sanctuary of the covenant", which was consecrated by Pope John Paul II in 1991, and is currently a pilgrimage site.

Koszalin's most distinctive landmark is St. Mary's cathedral (Marienkirche), dating from the early 14th century. Positioned in front of the cathedral is a monument commemorating John Paul II's visit to the city.


  • Koszalin University of Technology (Politechnika Koszalińska) [1]
  • Baltic College (Bałtycka Wyższa Szkoła Humanistyczna)
  • Air Force training center (Centrum Szkolenia Sił Powietrznych im. Romualda Traugutta)
  • Koszalin University of Humanities {Koszalińska Wyższa Szkoła Nauk Humanistycznych}
  • State Higher Vocational School in Koszalin (Państwowa Wyższa Szkoła Zawodowa w Koszalinie)
  • Major Seminary of the Diocese of Koszalin-Kolobrzeska in Koszalin (Wyższe Seminarium Duchowne Diecezji Koszalińsko-Kołobrzeskiej w Koszalinie)
  • Team State School of Music (Zespół Państwowych Szkół Muzycznych im. Grażyny Bacewicz)
  • School Arts Team (Zespół Szkół Plastycznych im. Władysława Hasiora)

Sports Club

  • AZS Koszalin - men's basketball team, 7th in Polska Liga Koszykówki in 2008/2009 season.
  • AZS Politechnika Koszalin - women's handball team playing in Polish Ekstraklasa Women's Handball League: 3rd place in 1st league in 2003/2004 season; promoted to Premiership in 2004/2005 season.
  • KS Gwardia Koszalin - football team playing in Bosman IV liga Zachodniopomorska.
  • KKPN Bałtyk Koszalin- football team playing in V liga KOZPN.
  • Tenis - Bałtyk Koszalin
  • Rugby - Rugby Club Koszalin
  • Motorsport - Klub Motor Sport Koszalin

Major corporations

  • Zakład Energetyczny Koszalin SA
  • Brok SA
  • JAAN Nordglass Autoglass


International relations

Twin towns — Sister cities

Koszalin is twinned with:



  • Gustav Kratz: Die Städte der Provinz Pommern - Abriß ihrer Geschichte, zumeist nach Urkunden. Berlin 1865 (reprinted in 1996 by Sändig Reprint Verlag, Vaduz/Liechtenstein, ISBN 3253027341; reprinted in 2011 by Kessinger Publishing, U.S.A., ISBN 1-161-12969-3), pp. 71-80 (in German, online).
  • Dornberger, Walter, Peenemuende, Moewig, Berlin, 1985
Further reading (in Polish)
  • collective work, Z dziejów Koszalina, Biblioteka Słupska, tom 7, Wydawnictwo Poznańskie i Polskie Towarzystwo Historyczne, Poznań-Słupsk 1960
  • (ed.) A.Lesiński, B.Drewniak, Dzieje Koszalina, Wydawnictwo Poznańskie, Poznań 1967
  • Tadeusz Gasztold, Adam Muszyński, Hieronim Rybicki, Koszalin. Zarys dziejów, Wydawnictwo Poznańskie, Poznań 1974

Citations and Notes

  1. ^ a b Gerhard Köbler, Historisches Lexikon der Deutschen Länder: die deutschen Territorien vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart, 7th edition, C.H.Beck, 2007, p.113, ISBN 3406549861
  2. ^ Kyra Inachim, Die Geschichte Pommerns, Hinstorff Rostock, 2008, p.61, ISBN 978-3-356-01044-2
  3. ^ a b Peter Zimmerling, Bonhoeffer als praktischer Theologe, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2006, p.59, ISBN 3525554516
  4. ^ p.37, Dornberger
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Kratz (1865), p. 77 (in German)
  6. ^ Christian Friedrich Wutstrack (ed.): Kurze historisch-geographisch-statistische Beschreibung von dem königlich-preußischen Herzogtum Vor- und Hinterpommern. Stettin 1793, table on p. 736.
  7. ^ Meyers Konversations-Lexikon. 6th edition, vol. 11, Leipzig and Vienna 1908, p. 526 (in German).
  8. ^ Der Große Brockhaus. 15th edition, vol. 10, Leipzig 1931, p. 498 (in German).
  9. ^ Immediately following Flight and expulsion of Germans from Poland during and after World War II

External links


Coordinates: 54°12′N 16°11′E / 54.2°N 16.183°E / 54.2; 16.183

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