Fürstenwerder was established by Winrich von Kniprode in 1352 under the Chełmno law (Kulm Law, a legal constitution for a municipal form of government) for 18 colonists. At the time, also a parish church was erected. In 1510, the village had 26 homesteads, including a village leader's farm, a parish priest, and 3 inns. During the following half century, the number of farms and inns decreased. In 1659, the village was burned by the Swedish army.
Until 1772 Fürstenwerder was located in what was known as Royal Prussia (also known as Polish Prussia) in the Kingdom of Poland. The First Partition of Poland in 1772 resulted in the creation of a new province on 31 January 1773, called West Prussia, in which the village was located. Fürstenwerder was situated in the district (Kreis) of Marienburg until the establishment of the Free City of Danzig in 1920. The village came under the control of Nazi Germany during World War II until February 1945, when it was occupied by Soviet forces and returned to Poland. In 2013 Fürstenwerder (now known as Żuławki) was a village in the administrative district of Gmina Stegna, within Nowy Dwór Gdański County, Pomeranian Voivodeship.
Fürstenwerder was the name (since about 1830) of an independent Mennonite congregation, which formerly belonged to the "Flemish Mennonite congregation in the Grosse Werder" and was called the "Bärwald'sches Quartier"; from 1809 on was known as Bärwalde and had its own elder (Isaac Schulz, 1809-1834). Since 1768 there had been a meetinghouse in Fürstenwerder, which had been preserved without any important alterations until 1990. In 1768 the bishop of Culm, who in the name of the King of Poland had supreme ecclesiastical authority in the Grosse Werder, had permitted the overgrown Mennonite Grosses Werder congregation to erect four meetinghouses, whereas up to this time the Flemish Mennonites had only the church built in Rosenort in 1754. The new buildings were begun in Tiegenhagen, Ladekopp, Fürstenwerder, and Heubuden, on the condition that the Mennonites build and perpetually maintain a Catholic chapel on Möskenberg at Petershagen. The buildings were progressing well, when in the summer of 1768 the bishop suddenly forbade and forcibly prohibited their completion. The reason was this: Anna Steffen, the only daughter of Jakob Steffen, a Mennonite resident of Tiegenhagen, was with her own consent abducted by Catholic nuns with aid of the Tiegenhagen priest, taken to Culm, and married to a Pole. Since the girl was still a minor, the parents demanded her surrender, and finding no hearing from the bishop they appealed to the King of Prussia, who had control of the Elbing region as a special right from Poland. The king ordered the bishop to release the girl; but now the bishop visited his wrath on all the Mennonites of the Grossen Werder, by prohibiting the completion of the four buildings, and declared that he would not consent to having them finished until they stopped bothering him about Steffen. At the end of October he gave his consent and the buildings were finished. The Catholic chapel in Petershagen, which was finished at the same time, was burned down by lightning in 1778 and was not rebuilt. The Mennonites terminated their obligation by paying a lump sum.
In 1772, Fürstenwerder had 17 Mennonite families with 81 persons. The 1776 census lists 16 Mennonite families with the following surnames: Bruhn, Claas(s)en, Dridger, Esau, Harder, Manteler, Plett, Reimer, van Bergen, van Riesen, Warckentin, and Wiebe. In 1820, the village had 564 residents, including 52 Mennonites. In 1889, the village had 794 residents, including 62 Mennonites.
In 1853 Claas Epp, the Schulze of Fürstenwerder, emigrated to the province of Samara (Am Trakt settlement), followed in 1859 and the following years by the preacher Cornelius Classen and finally also Elder Johann Wiebe to the Alt-Samara settlement in the same province.
In 1990 the former church building was destroyed by fire.
Crous, Ernst. "Vom Pietismus bei den altpreussischen Mennoniten." Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter 11 (1954): 13.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 21 f.
Mitteilungen der Konferenz der ost.- und westpreussischen Mennoni-tengemeinden, Nos. 1-3 (September 1948, November 1943, and February 1944). A mimeographed copy in the Research Center at Göttingen.
Penner, Horst. Die ost- und westpreussischen Mennoniten in ihrem religiösen und sozialen Leben in ihren kulturellen und wirtschaftlichen Leistungen, 2 vols. Weierhof, Germany: Mennonitischer Geschichtsverein, 1978-1987: v. 2, p. 251.
Wikipedia. "Żuławki." Web. 14 October 2012. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Żuławki.
Wolf, Hans-Jürgen. "Familienforschung in Westpreußen." Web. 14 October 2012. http://www.westpreussen.de/cms/ct/ortsverzeichnis/details.php?ID=1725.
Elders of the Grosses Werder Mennonite Church
|Elder||Years of Service|
|Hans Siemens (d. 1644)||22 Sep 1639-Feb 1644|
|Peter Claassen||31 Oct 1645–8 Oct 1679|
|Harm Neufeld, (d. 1695)||1676-1695|
|Dirk Siemens (d. 1729), Tiegenhagen||6 Sep 1695–24 Nov 1729|
|Abraham Buhler, Co-Elder||Until 1726|
|Simon von Riesen (d. 1736), Klein Mausdorf||18 Sep 1729–fall 1736|
|Cornelius Andres (1680-1741), Tiegerweide||7 Jun 1736–11 Jun 1741|
|Hans Buhler, Klein Mausddorferfeld||10 Sep 1741–29 Sep 1754|
|Abraham Penner (d. 1766), Rueckenauerfeld||2 Feb 1755–28 Nov 1766|
|Dirk Thiessen (1727-1806), Petershagen||1 Feb 1767–11 Jun 1806|
|Cornelius Warkentin (1740-1809), Rosenort||13 Sep 1795–10 Jan 1809|
Fürstenwerder Mennonite Church Elders
|Elder||Years of Service|
|Isaak Schulz (1761-1834)||20 Aug 1809–23 Aug 1834|
|Jakob van Bergen (1789-1841)||28 Sep 1834–28 Jun 1841|
|Wilhelm Claassen (1799-1859)||10 Oct 1841–23 Jul 1859|
|Johann Wiebe (1806-1872)||19 Aug 1860–3 Oct 1869|
|Peter Regier (1825-1897)||1 Feb 1874–3 Mar 1897|
|Johannes Dyck (1853-1908)||14 Jan 1892–20 Jun 1908|
|Jakob Jantzen (1866-1942)||15 Jan 1911-27 Sep 1942|
|Johannes Dyck (1880-1960)||1943-1945|
|Author(s)||H. G. Mannhardt|
|Richard D. Thiessen|
|Date Published||April 2013|
Cite This Article
Mannhardt, H. G. and Richard D. Thiessen. "Fürstenwerder (Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. April 2013. Web. 1 Apr 2015. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=F%C3%BCrstenwerder_(Pomeranian_Voivodeship,_Poland)&oldid=94786.
Mannhardt, H. G. and Richard D. Thiessen. (April 2013). Fürstenwerder (Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 1 April 2015, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=F%C3%BCrstenwerder_(Pomeranian_Voivodeship,_Poland)&oldid=94786.
Herald Press website.
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