Gruszków

Gruszków

410-530 m above sea level

This village is situated within the Rudawy Landscape Park, at an altitude of 410-530 m above sea level. Its lower section lies on the Gruszkówka stream, not far from the park and palace complex in Karpniki.

A chain-type village, it stretches for some 1.5 km and is surrounded by spruce forests and rocks (of Variscan Giant Mountain granite) scattered around the nearby hills.

Gruszków lies within the Mysłakowice commune, and the road linking Kowary to Strużnica runs through the village's upper section. A separate road branches off of this one, passing through the centre of the village on its way to Karpniki.

The village boasts some beautiful old architecture, with historical buildings including a magnificent court-inn from the 18th century, and numerous 19th-century houses (including Upper Lusatian and brick houses).

Today Gruszków is a village developing very well in the area of tourism, offering a broad range of accommodation for its modest size.

History

Back in 1399 the village was known as Berndorf, while its recorded name was Berndorff in 1677,  Barndorf in 1786, Berndorf in 1765[JdW1] , Grzeszków and Niedzwiedziska in 1946, and it ultimately acquired the name Gruszków – used to this day – in the year 1950.

Gruszków is an old settlement dating back to the mid 14th century, and the fact that so little information has survived about it is very unfortunate. What is known from documents is that to begin with it was not a separate settlement, but belonged to property tied to Radociny. It constituted the property of Count Hans Ulrich von Schaffgotsch up until when he was executed in 1635 in Regensburg. The entire estate then passed into the hands of the Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand II. He in turn decided to sell Gruszków, belonging to the property in the so-called Kowary demesne, to Hans von Tschernin (Czernin) of the Czech lands. The property belonged to this Czech family up until 1747. During the Czech count's rule over the settlement, the peasants rebelled in 1649; a trial took place in the court in Jawor in which the property's administrator, G. Dotzman, was accused of imposing excessive corvée. The ruling was, as tended to be the case in those times, favourable for the manor.

The tax paid in 1727 in Gruszków valued 388 thalers, and the village was of medium size for the area.

From 1747 Gruszków remained under the administration of Kowary, and the property's value was estimated to be 3,694 thalers in 1765. It was home then to 86 serfs – mainly weavers, 10 crofters and 16 peasants. 21 years later the records listed two watermills, a school, 16 peasants, 51 crofters and 53 serfs. Gruszków back then was famous for its excellent beer.

In 1820 the village's surroundings (forests together with related industry) were sold to Count von Matuschka for 11,650 thalers. The village of Gruszków itself still belonged to the town of Kowary. In the first half of the 19th century it constituted a fair-sized settlement. Because it belonged to the town of Kowary, it never became a summer holiday resort – despite its very scenic setting and, importantly, being right next to Karpniki and Bukowiec (two well-known places among tourists, described in the guidebooks of the day). The village's population fell after 1945, as also did the number of farms. In 1979 the village had 15 farms and one sheepfold, and in 1988 – 18 farms.

Translation Jonathan Weber

Literatura:

1. "Słownik geografii turystycznej Sudetów. Rudawy Janowickie". Red. M. Staffa. Wyd. I-BIS. Wrocław 1998