Koschneiderei (Kosznajderia)

Koschneiderei (also called Koschnäwjer Dörfer, Polish: Kosznajderia) was a colloquial name for a former distinct cultural area in Pomerelia southeast of the city Konitz (Polish: Chojnice). It had been settled by ethnic Germans at the time of the Teutonic Knights during the 14th century. It was inhabited from a German population until the end of World War II largely (also see History of Pomeralia).

The residents of the Koschneiderei retained Plattdeutsch (Low German) as their language as well as a distinct culture for hundreds of years. While much of West Prussia became Lutheran, this area remained Catholic. Ethnic Poles and ethnic Germans attended the same parishes, resulting in considerable intermarriage.

In the 19th century the Koschneiderei villages were part of the following three West Prussian counties in the administrative district Regierungsbezirk Marienwerder: Kreis Flatow (Damerau, Groß Zirkwitz and Obkaß since 1818), Kreis Konitz (all the other 16 villages since 1818; two of these villages belonging to Kreis Tuchel since 1872), and Kreis Tuchel (Abrau and Petztin since 1872).

These were the 19 Koschnajäwer Dörfer (villages) which constituted the Koschneiderei  (former German names; today's Polish names in brackets):

  • Abrau (Obrowo)
  • Annafeld (Nowa Wieś)
  • Blumfelde (Niwy)
  • Damerau (Dąbrówka)
  • Deutsch Cekzin (Ciechocin)
  • Döringsdorf (Doręgowice)
  • Frankenhagen (Silno)
  • Gersdorf (Ogorzelny)
  • Granau (Granowo)
  • Groß Zirkwitz (Duża Cerkwica)
  • Harmsdorf (Jerzmionki)
  • Henningsdorf (Angowice)
  • Jakobsdorf (Zamarte)
  • Lichnau (Lichnowy)
  • Mosnitz (Moszczenica)
  • Obkaß (Obkas)
  • Osterwick (Ostrowite)
  • Petztin (Piastoszyn)
  • Schlagenthin (Sławęcin)


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    Map of Koschneiderei Villages in West Prussia