Province of Upper Silesia

Infobox Former Subdivision
conventional_long_name = Upper Silesia
common_name = Upper Silesia
native_name = "Oberschlesien"
subdivision = Province
nation = Prussia

image_map_caption = Upper Silesia (red), within the Free State of Prussia
capital = Oppeln Kattowitz (after 1941)
stat_area1= 9702
stat_year1 = 1925
stat_pop1 = 1379408
p1 = Province of Silesia
flag_p1 = Flagge Preußen - Provinz Schlesien.svg
s1 = Opole Voivodeship
flag_s1 = POL województwo opolskie flag.svg
s2 = Silesian Voivodeship
flag_s2 = Slaskie flag.svg
s3 = Hlučín Region
flag_s3 =
year_start = 1919
year_end = 1945
life_span = 1919 — 1938 1941 — 1945
event1 = Merged with L. Silesia
date_event1 = 1938 - 1941
political_subdiv = Kattowitz
The Province of Upper Silesia ( _de. Provinz Oberschlesien; _pl. Górny Śląsk; Silesian: "Górny Ślonsk") was a province of the Free State of Prussia created in the aftermath of World War I. It composed much of the region of Upper Silesia and was eventually divided into two administrative regions ("Regierungsbezirke"), Kattowitz and Oppeln. The provincial capital was Oppeln (Opole), while other major towns included Beuthen (Bytom), Gleiwitz (Gliwice), Hindenburg O.S. (Zabrze), Neiße (Nysa), and Ratibor (Racibórz).


Within Weimar Germany, the Prussian Province of Silesia was divided into the provinces of Upper Silesia and Lower Silesia in 1919 in the aftermath of World War I. Silesian Uprisings of Poles against Germans occurred in Upper Silesia from 1919 and 1920. Uproar over the Upper Silesia plebiscite of 1921 led to a third uprising, which culminated in the Battle of Annaberg. Upper Silesian lands transferred from Germany to the Second Polish Republic became part of the Autonomous Silesian Voivodeship. The territory remaining in Prussian Upper Silesia was administered within Regierungsbezirk Oppeln and had 530,000 Poles within it Nowa Encyklopedia Powszechna PWNPaństwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe=Warszawa 2004 pages 117-118 volume 8] ,.

The Province of Upper Silesia was reunited with Lower Silesia as the Province of Silesia in 1938. After the invasion of Poland in 1939, Polish Upper Silesia, including the industrial city of Kattowitz (Katowice), was annexed into the Province of Silesia. This annexed territory, also known as East Upper Silesia ("Ostoberschlesien"), became part of the new Regierungsbezirk Kattowitz.German occupation forces began a policy of terror and repressions against Polish population, that started already in September 1939Czesław Madajczyk"Polityka III Rzeszy w okupowanej Polsce" Państwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe Warszawa 1970 volume 1, page 384] based on lists made before the war that pointed out Poles active in social and political life. A second wave of arrests happened during October and November in "Intelligenzaktion Schlesien", aimed against Polish intellectuals, in consequence 2000 Poles were murdered(journalists, politicians, priets, Polish activists). Third wave of arrests came on April and May 1940 during AB Aktion, most of those arrested and put into concentration camps died.

In Katowice one of the harshests centres of opression was the prison on Mikołowska street where people were murdered by Germans through the use of guillotine. In Katowice region a prison was located and penal camp in which Poles from Upper Silesia were held.

At the same time Polish population was being expelled from Upper Silesia; from 1939 till 1942 40.000 Poles were expelled [Czesław Madajczyk "Polityka III Rzeszy w okupowanej Polsce" Państwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe, Warszawa, volume 1 pages 424-426] . In their place German colonists were settled. Till 1943 circa 230 000 colonists were located on Polish territories [Czesław Madajczyk "Polityka III Rzeszy w okupowanej Polsce" Państwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe, Warszawa, volume 1 page 352] . [Czesław Madajczyk "Polityka III Rzeszy w okupowanej Polsce" Państwowe Wydawnictwo Naukowe, Warszawa, volume 1 page 249] Niemców z Rzeszy. The death toll of Polish civilian deaths in Upper Silesia at the hands of Germans is within 25,000 victims, 20,000 of them being urban dwellers.In 1941 the Province of Silesia was again divided into the Provinces of Upper and Lower Silesia; Kattowitz was made the capital of Upper Silesia instead of Oppeln.

Upper Silesia was conquered by the Soviet Red Army in 1945 during World War II. The post-war Potsdam Agreement granted the land to Poland; the territory is now in the Polish Opole and Silesian Voivodeships. Most Germans remaining in the territory were expelled westward. The Landsmannschaft Schlesien represents German Silesians from Upper and Lower Silesia.

Administrative regions

As of January 1 1945

Regierungsbezirk Kattowitz

Urban districts / "Stadtkreise"

#City of Beuthen
#City of Gleiwitz
#City of Hindenburg in Oberschlesien
#City of Kattowitz
#City of Königshütte

Rural districts / "Landkreise"

#Landkreis Bendsburg
#Landkreis Beuthen-Tarnowitz
#Landkreis Bielitz
#Landkreis Kattowitz
#Landkreis Krenau
#Landkreis Ilkenau
#Landkreis Pless
#Landkreis Rybnik
#Landkreis Saybusch
#Landkreis Teschen
#Landkreis Tost-Gleiwitz

Regierungsbezirk Oppeln

Urban districts / "Stadtkreise"

#City of Nysa/Neisse
#City of Opole/Oppeln
#City of Racibórz/Ratibor

Rural districts / "Landkreise"

#Landkreis Blachstädt
#Landkreis Cosel
#Landkreis Falkenberg in Oberschleisen
#Landkreis Gross Strehlitz
#Landkreis Grottkau
#Landkreis Guttentag
#Landkreis Kreuzburg in Oberschlesien
#Landkreis Leobschütz
#Landkreis Lublinitz
#Landkreis Neisse
#Landkreis Neustadt in Oberschlesien
#Landkreis Oppeln
#Landkreis Ratibor
#Landkreis Rosenberg
#Landkreis Warthenau

External links

* [ Volksabstimmungen 1920 und 1922] de icon

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