Previously published in PGS-CA Bulletin (January 2011)

Bursztyn Translated from the Słownik Geograficzny (1880-1902)
by Helen Bienick

Bursztyn, with the villages of Burczyce and Ludwikówka, a town in the county of Rohatyn (presently in the Ukraine) lies on the river Lipa as it flows from Peremisljani, and on the road which runs from Lwów/Lviv through Podhajczki, Rohatyn, Bursztyn and Wojniłów. This route eventually joins the road that leads from Lwów to Stryj and Stanisławów. Another road (paved) leads to the town of Halicz. The railroad station serves Bursztyn and Demianów on the line which runs from Lwów to Czernowiec/Cernivci, and is six kilometers from Bursztyn and 17 miles from Rohatyn. The route from Lwów to Halicz measures 100 kilometers.

One large farmstead covered 880 morgen [1] of fertile farmland, 320 mr. of meadows and gardens, 458 mr. of pastureland, and 566 mr. of forests. The second farmstead and estate covered 1914 mr. of arable farms, 540 mr. of meadows and gardens, and 289 mr. of pastures.

In a population count of 4294 inhabitants, there were 371 Roman Catholics, 1471 Greek Catholics and 2452 Israelites. The town had a county court house, as well as a post office, telegraph station, and two churches, Roman and Greek Catholic. The Roman church and parish was founded in 1740 by Paweł Benoe, the attorney for the Crown. He also built a convent for the Fathers of the Holy Trinity Order. The brick church was dedicated in 1744. The following villages were members of the parish: Jezierzany, Junaszków, Korostowice, Kukicze, Kuropatniki, Ludwikówka, Nastaszczyn, Sarnki Dolne, Sarnki Średne and Staśiowa Wola. The entire Roman Catholic population totaled 1693 souls. The parish belonged to the deanery of Kakol. Local schools were located in Bursztyn, as well as in Korostowice, Nastaszczyn and Sarnki Dolne. There were two chapels in use, one on the cemetery, and the other in the Convent of the Sisters of Mercy, which was built in 1842 and funded by Count Ignacy Skarba. The Sisters were occupied with caring for the sick and orphaned children.

The Greek Catholic Church with the towns of Bursztyn and Ludwikówka totaled 1494 souls and belonged to the deanery of Rogatyn. Bursztyn also had a special school for boys.

A very important attraction of Bursztyn was its beautiful palace and gardens. Especially noteworthy was a canary roost built in a beautiful designed house where several hundred canaries were on display. The town was considered one of the most beautifully designed in Galicia, as well as the most attractive.

Also found in Bursztyn were quarries of alabaster, and six large mounds of burial ground dating back to the 1629 defeat of the marauding Tatars. According to legend, not far from this grave site is the burial ground of Count Stanisław Jabłonowski, the grandson of Count Ignacy Skarba.

Note: The word ”bursztyn” translates to ”amber” as mined in the Baltic Sea.

[1] One morgen (mr.) is ~2.116 acres.