During the early Middle Ages there was a settlement protecting the crossing of the river Noteć, in the area of the present-day Pakość. The earliest mention, from 1259, provides information on its reconstruction by duke Kazimierz of Kujawy and Pomeranian duke Światopełk. The early Middle Ages settlement of Pakość was in fact an agglomeration of settlers consisting of two grads, one of which dated back to 1259, two open settlements and three bridges. During the fragmentation of Poland, battles for the settlement took place, between dukes of the Greater Poland and Kujawy region. At the turn of the 12th and 13th centuries, a church dedicated to St. Jacob was built and in the 13th century a parish was established.

The founders of the settlement were most probably members of the knighthood family of Awdaniec. In the 13th century, Pakość changed its owners many times. At last, during the 1270s, dukes of Greater Poland granted the settlement to the knights from the Wyszelicz family. Since 1325, its owner was Bogumił from the Leszczyc family, and later Wojciech and Hektor from the Kościelec family. On 26 March 1356, King Kazimierz Wielki resigned from the rights to the grad and transferred them to the Provincial governor, Wojciech Leszczyc, as well as granted him an extensive immunity. On 9 February 1359, Kazimierz Wielki granted Pakość city rights based on the Magdeburg Law.

In 1660, the owner of Pakość, Zygmunt Działyński, made a journey to the Holy Land. At the beginning of the 16th century, another church dedicated to the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary was established. Between 1564 and 1598, the church of St. Jacob was taken by the Unity of the Brethren, who had settled in Pakość before 1441. In the mid-15th century, Erazm Krotowski, the owner of the town, joined the Unity of the Brethern. Eventually, the church fell into disrepair in the 18th century. In the town there was a hospital, the chapel of the Holy Ghost, and a parish school. The Gothic castle, built in the place of the former grad in the second half of the 14th century, remained a very characteristic building. Near the castle, a grad was situated with an impressive stone building, which was a summer residence of bishop Kasper Działyński. Representatives of the Działyński family granted the crumbling castle in 1630s to the Reformed Franciscans. During the1630s, they established also a new church dedicated to St. Bonawentura. In the 17th century, a local parson, reverend Wojciech Kęsicki initiated a construction of the local Calvary. Since the end of the 17th century, a brickyard and two mills functioned in Pakość. At the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries, Scottish Protestants moved into the town, as well as Germans in the 18th century.

Destruction of the town was caused by the Northern Wars (1700-1721), a wave of epidemics during 1626-1629 and 1708-1710, and a great fire on 19 May 1684, which burnt down across the city. Another series of fires took place in: 1794, 1798 and 1799. The town was a local center of trade and craft. A line of water mills was built by the river Noteć. In 1769, the inhabitants of Pakość witnessed a battle between the Bar Confederates and the Cossaks. In the 18th and at the beginning of the 19th centuries, Pakość was famous for its school, ran by the Franciscans, and later closed in 1824.

In 1773, the town found itself in Prussia, Netze District. Between years 1807-1815, it was part of the Duchy of Warsaw. In 1815, it became a part of Prussia (later Germany), Grand Duchy of Posen (later Province of Posen), Regierungsbezirk Bydgoszcz. At the beginning of the 18th century, the Lutherans began to settle near Pakość. In 1866, the Evangelical Church was built..

Description of Pakość from 1816 tells us that there were 69 houses in the city, a closed mill, several windmills, a fire brigade, and two private distilleries. About 80 craftsmen worked there and 5-6 monks lived in the Monastery of Franciscans (liquidated in 1837). Apart from the Calvary church, there were 24 chapels and the Franciscan school with 200 pupils. The town did not have waterworks or a sewage system.

In the 19th century, industry developed in the town – a mineral water company, a stem dairy, a brewery, a distillery, dye-works, a sugar refinery (1880), a town slaughterhouse (1904), gas works (1904) and a cold store. In 1911, a new town hall was built and the sewage system was installed. In 1889, railway connected Pakość to Inowrocław and Żnin. During the Prussian Partition, Polish social-political and cultural life concentrated in Pakość Calvary. During the Greater Poland Uprising (1918-1919) its residents fought on the northeastern front.

In 1919, the town returned to the Polish territory and became a part of Inowrocław county, Poznańskie Province, and since 1938 – Pomorskie Province. In 1939, the town found itself in the area incorporated to Germany as Reichsgau Wartheland.

In 1945, Pakość became a part of Bydgoskie Province. After World War II, Pakość was a well-known linen processing centre. During 1946-1949, buildings of the former sugar refinery were adapted to accommodate a linen processing company. In 1952, a factory of linen processing equipment was established,  and in 1961 a factory of fireboards. Since 1999, Pakość is a part of Inowrocław county in Kujawsko-Pomorskie Province.

 

Bibliography:

  • Dzieje Pakości, W. Jastrzębski (ed.), Warszawa – Poznań (1978).
  • A. Warszauer, Geschichte der Stadt Pakosch, Posen (1905).

 

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