Pilwiszki

• Home of Wilhelmine Kaptain, wife of William Gustave Spurgat.

The Road between Wylkowiszki and Pilwiszki

This map shows the road between Wylkowiszki in the center left  and Pilwiszki in the upper right.

This map shows the road between Wylkowiszki in the center left and Pilwiszki in the upper right.

Pilwiszki, now Pilviskiai, was a municipal settlement before 1867. It was a small town on the river Szeszupa [Sesupe] by the mouths of the Pilwa and Wysoka Rivers in Mariampol [Marijampole] county. It is in the administrative subdistrict and parish of Pilwiszki. This settlement had a scenic location on an elevated bank of the river. It was 27 kilometers from Maryampol and 15 kilometers from Wylkowiszki.

Pilwiszki had a wooden parish church, the administrative subdistrict office, an elementary school, and a pharmacy. A railroad station for the Warsaw-St. Petersburg line on the branch ran from Kovno (Kaunas) to Ejtkuny (Eydtkuhnen in German and today Chernyshevskoye in the Russian oblast of Kaliningrad). It is 31 kilometers from Wierzbolowo (Virbalis), and 93 kilometers from Koszedary (Kaisiadorys). The settlement had 157 houses and 2,291 inhabitants. In 1827 there were 81 houses and 888 inhabitants; in 1862 there were 226 houses and 1,889 inhabitants. (1)

Pilwiszki had a wooden parish church, the administrative subdistrict office, an elementary school, and a pharmacy. A railroad station for the Warsaw-St. Petersburg line on the branch ran from Kovno (Kaunas) to Ejtkuny (Eydtkuhnen in German and today Chernyshevskoye in the Russian oblast of Kaliningrad). It is 31 kilometers from Wierzbolowo (Virbalis), and 93 kilometers from Koszedary (Kaisiadorys). The settlement had 157 houses and 2,291 inhabitants. In 1827 there were 81 houses and 888 inhabitants; in 1862 there were 226 houses and 1,889 inhabitants. (2)

History

Pilwiszki was located on the grounds of the extensive forests on the royal estates. Originally a village, it received a town charter in 1536. The absence of favorable conditions limited the town’s development, and it took on the character of a village; it was not until 1792 that a new charter, issued by Stanislaw August, restored its status as a town and returned privileges to its people that the abuses of starostas (foremen) had usurped. Pilwiszki was known for its cattle and horse fairs. In 1881 six fairs were held. (3)

The Pilwiszki forest district had 47,601 morgs of land and was divided into sections. In 1861 a marksman’s school for the gubernia of Augustow was held in this forest district. In 1828 amber was discovered here; the treasury received a total of 1,093 silver rubles for the right to mine it. (4)

The evangelische parish was not organized until 1926. (5)

Conclusion

Germans had been moving east for centuries, but it was not until the late 18th century that German “colonists” settled in the Wylkowiszki area in measurable numbers. The small German minority that started the Mariampol congregation in 1819 and eventually its sister congregations in Kalvaria, Seirjai, and Wylkowiszki gradually grew to 3,099 Lutherans by the time the three Spurgat emigrants left the area.

This ends the series of posts on the Wylkowiszki Administrative District: Spurgat Towns, Villages, Manors, and Hamlets.

A new series of posts will begin next.

1 Slownik Geograficzny Krolestwa Polskiego, vol. 8, 147.
2 Slownik Geograficzny Krolestwa Polskiego, vol. 8, 147.
3 Slownik Geograficzny Krolestwa Polskiego, vol. 8, 147.
4 Slownik Geograficzny Krolestwa Polskiego vol. 8, 147.
5 Jaekel, Bilder aus der Geschichte des evangelischen Deutschtums in Litauen, 91

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About suwalkigermans

I started family research in 1993. My first two books focused on my maternal grandparents. Both families came from Kreis Rosenberg, West Prussia, to Big Rapids, Michigan. I left the Spurgats from Wylkowiszki in the Russian Empire as the third book because of the difficult and challenging research it required. After I published the book in 2010, I wondered what to do next. I thought I might try to share some of my research with others and maybe at the same time, by going digital, someone would find me. When you read the comments, you will see that happened. The best part of all this is helping others.
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