Why Konstancin? The origins of the city.
Any published material about the beforementioone topic,
including the Encyclopedia of Polish Cities throuout the
Millenium do not explain the origins of the name. Most
of the responders, not necessarily wisemen, try to link
it to The Great Prince Konstanty, who was supposed to
hunt in the area and had his armies stationed here.
That's why there is the solemn silence over the name -
claim the supporters of this explanation. Many of the
us know the inscription on the stone originating from
1937, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of assigning
urban right for the settlement. They would say:
- Konstancin? From the name of the founder, of course.
Well, it should be that way. But the founder was count
Some persons try to speculate it's derived from the name
of count Konstanty Potulicki, one of the founders of Obory
settlement, where the craddle of Konstancin is; others
claim it's from the name of the founder's father. No written
document seems to contitute that hypothesis, nor any other
proof - gravestones on the Słomczyn graveyard; nor does
so any of the remaining members of Potulicky family, still
alive. The founder's father's name was Zygmunt. And finally
the persons who knew the last owner of Obory - countess
Maria Potulicka - claims that supposedly Konstancin comes
from the name of major domo who served the family.
Nice stroy, however completely untrue, like some similar,
not worth mentioning. Even if the countess said something
similar - it was most probably intended to be a joke.
Konstancin had and still has its own writer, historians,
journalists. An old proverd "the shomaker goes barefoot"
comes true on that example. Should we ask a fortune-teller
to help us find - why Konstancin? There is no such need.
Let's allow the scriptures to speak - namely, the testimony
of countess Maria Grzymała-Potulicka, dating back to 1898.
It states as follows:
2) for my sister, countess Konstancja Zygmuntowa Skórzewska
I leave 10.000 rs (...)
6) for countess Maria Skórzewska, daughter of Witold and
Maria de domo Radziwiłł Skórzewska - 4.000 rs(...)
The executive of this documents I name to be prince Michał
Ogiński and count Witold Skórzewski. They are entire entitled
and it is my will, that the aforementioned forest should
be sold and used to cover all the expenses on that part,
with the help and advice of count Mieczysław Potulicki,
whatever the condition may be that the heir to the whole
of the goods is underaged count Henryk Potulicki.
Countess Maria Grzymała-Potulicka"
clear then! Let us only add what follows: first - one
of the executives of the testimony, count Witold Skórzewski,
was the founder of Konstancin. Second - the aforementioned
forest is the area of future settlement of Konstancin.
Third - the sister of the signer of the dokument - Konstancja
- is the mother of count Witold Skórzewski. Could the
founder of a beautiful summer residence name it better,
as after his beloved and beautiful mother?
This sort of historical finding I published first as "Konstancin
Riddle" on January, 30th, 1978 in "Sztandar
Młodych". I am further ensured that this is true
by the finding that the oldest name used was Konstancyja.The
name was later only changed to Konstancin.
I need to hereby explain the mystery of my finding. It
would not come to it at all, if not for an important fact
- the document was written in Russian - at that time the
official language in that area. But the author signed
it in latin alphabet. That patriotical fact enabled the
discovery. I need to add at once that after publishing
the aforementioned article somebody was brave enough to
lend me a book, written by K. Orthwein, under the auspices
of PAN. I say "brave enough", because in the
Konstancin society it was shamely hid, due to socrealistic
views contain in it. Additionally, it used unreliable
sources - it could not serve as a serious clue in my search
for the traditions and history of Konstancin.
Until recently any visitor to the city, wanting to buy
a postcard with the city scape could not - we have none,
was the answer. But not only now - never! To send greetings,
one needed to use a postcard with views from Warsaw, Wilanów
or Piaseczno. This fgact shoul also be assumed to be discriminator
throughout all the years of socialism in Poland.
creation of Konstancin
Obory are a kind of craddle of Konstancin. Would this
not necessarily pretty named place (Obory = Barns) be
where the city originated? - one may ask angrily, bearing
in mind the noble past. Of course yes! And this is not:
Obory near Konstancin, it is: Konstancin near Obory!
From the mansion of Obory, once strongly connected with
Wilanów via its owner - Jan Wieloposlki - the Counselor
of King Jan III Sobieski, originates the city itself.
For the first time in history the name Konstancin (not
Konstancin Settlement, as some would want it basing on
what appears in an undisputable proof on the historical
source - the boulder at the entrance to Park Zdrojowy),
but as the Konstancin Farm, a part of the Obory goods.
From the inscription, nowadays impossible to be read,
we find out it was layed there by the citizens to commemorate
the 40th anniversary of the city. The boulder is a proof
dating back to 1937, while the earlier sources show the
link between Konstancin and the Konstancin Farm, a plan
of which was signed by the countess Maria Grzymała-Potulicka,
the issuer otf the testimony already mentioned before,
and her husband - count Władysław Mielżyński. But this
seems a bit ancient.
Obory Palace - where Konstancin originates.
More modern times in Konstancin are connected with count
Witold Skórzyński, the initiator and founder of a modern
and elegant sub-capital settlement.
To raise his project, he was well prepared - basing on
the special Society For Creation of Better Summer Settlements,
with the help of best specialists - architects, engineers,
geodeths, builders. The originalyty and scope of the project
are crucial in the process of the creation. The oprioginal
plans projected the city as a modern, elegant, completely
abandoning the popular trends of that time - the chessboard
or the star; it was a city with new idea and artistic
The main axis of Konstancin became the Sienkiewicz Alley.
It's worth mentioning that our city was the only one in
the whole country - and maybe even abroad - a city in
the forest, deprived of streets. How to put it? No streets
- alleys only! In a casual but carefully planned way,
according to the route of the main Sienkiewcz Alley, run
other ones: Moniuszko, Matejko, Mickiewicz, Sobieski,
Wilanów, Kopernik, Słowacki Batory, Jagiellons, Piast,
Skarga, Kraszewski Alleys. After long years of servitude
and imprisonment, Konstancin brought forth the names -
symbols of our glorious past, stating clearly that...
Poland, still alive...
That tradition was kept with small changes until present
times, though the time itself exchanged alleys with streets.
But the plan was not only a proud idea - it was put into
being quickly. Thanks to dirt roads, traced and located
among the woods, that were later turned into alleys, vast
areas were parcelated, regulated, given pavement, linet
with trees and hundreds of houses were built.