Plotzk - 1848 Village History
Copyright 1996, Elli Wise
Notes: Please see the Introduction to the Village History Project for additional information.
I. In the year 1836, the almost eternalized elder Andreas Blum and his family emigrated from the kingdom Prussia to the province of Bessarabia. This hard working, experienced farmer was immediately concerned in providing a home for his family before the end of his lifetime. Late in 1836, he conferred with the Welfare Committee of settlers from foreign countries, requesting that a section of free land be assigned to him, his sons, and sons-in-law, to live on and to farm... He was granted his request and the emigrants were assigned to the land, south of the colony Brienne, with the assurance of finding drinkable water. Happy and hopeful that they would have a home for their families, and joined by a few other men, they went to dig for a well. Unsuccessful in two different places, they went in the spring of 1838, into the valley where the colony itself was to be located, to look for water. Eagerly, they started to drill, but after having drilled 7 Faden deep, they hit rock. They became discouraged and thought their efforts and work to be a loss. Blum, experienced in his profession, requested that his workers drill deeper into the rock. One can only imagine how happy they were to find water after drilling a few more Faden deeper. Even happier were they to find that the water was not only healthy, but also plentiful, enough to water more than 500 cattle. In 1838, with permission of the government, they were able to settle there and to start erecting houses and begin farming.
II. The steppes, belonging to this colony, is almost flat and only four small valleys stretch downward, from North to South. The village is in the valley Draguli and its steppe borders those of Brienne, Dennewitz, Taschlick, Burboschi and a Crown steppe. The colony, belonging to the district of Akkermann, the government of Kischinew, is under jurisdiction of the Marojaroslawetz area office and included in the parish of Fere Champenois. The city Akkermann is 70 werst southeast of Plotzk, 45 to the south is the city Kilie, 70 to the southwest is the city Ismail and 120 werst northeast is the city Kischinew.
The black rich soil can be considered fertile, since the fruits, grain and vineyards are prosperous during mild and rainy seasons. The were no woods, but by order from the authorities, orchards were planted but whether or not they are successful is still uncertain.
There are no rock quarries, and the stones needed for building, have to be brought in from the colony Dennewitz which is 7 werst from Plotzk. The Welfare Authority had appointed a part of the Dennewitz rock quarry to be used by the Plotzk colony.
III. In the beginning, this colony was named Draguli, same as the valley. The community agreed to name it Plotzk, which was approved by the authorities, in memory of the gubernatorial city in Poland where they had settled before coming here.
IV. Originally there were 13 families that settled in this colony and did all the above mentioned work. They all came from the Polish Kingdom, Plotzk district and the Gomin area. In 1839 and 1840, 26 more farmers came, filling the colony. These colonists emigrated partially from the kingdom of Poland and partially from the kingdom of Wuerttemberg.
V. The emigrants did not come together, nor had they joined other parties but came family by family, without a leader, to Bessarabia.
VI. At the time of their arrival, the steppes had still been occupied by Russians. The Russians had lived in mud huts, leaving no houses nor anything else to the emigrants.
VII. The 10 free years, which the high regiment was generous enough to give to the colonists, was the only support they received. They had to use their own means, part by using the little money they brought, and part by working extremely hard and selling handmade goods to support their families and try to advance.
VIII. There were no occurrences or accidents to speak of, that would have caused the community to suffer, since the beginning of their settlement. Though in 1844, there was a cattle epidemic that caused a setback, without which the farmers would have been well off.
IX. The community has to thank God, for being guarded and blessed, to thank the Authorities and the deceased Andreas Blum, for the prosperity they presently enjoy. Blum, who had been named mayor to the community at the time of settlement, was not only an example of a good christian , hard worker, by which he truly served the community. He was not happy with the mud hut to serve for school and church services and had laid plans in 1840 to build a roomy school and prayer house. With the help of God it was finished in 1844, and it positively encouraged schooling and church services and impressed upon the colonists behavior. That the above statement is truthful, is notarized by the undersigned:
Assistants: Balzer, Treiber
Lay preacher/teacher: Wernick (Author)
Colony Plotzk, 30 April, 1848
as translated by Elli Wise 6/96
Coordinated with GRHS Village Research Clearing House
Coordinated with AHSGR/GRHS Translation Committee Chairman
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