Although a centre of the Legnicko-Glogowskie Copper District, present-day Glogow is not simply an industrial town, but also one that offers a lot to visitors. Both Glogow itself and its environs are beautifully landscaped and dotted with greenery. The most impressive local initiative is the reconstruction of the Old Town, after it was almost totally destroyed in the Second World War. The renovation works have produced great results, but like most projects of this size, there is always much work to do.
During the Second World War about 90 per cent of Glogow was destroyed. The present reconstruction works are being carried out with the aim of restoring the historic appearance of the town and by extension making it more attractive to the inhabitants and visitors alike.
When in Glogow, you should see the castle, which was reconstructed in the years 1971-1983 and now houses the Historical and Archaeological Museum. The Town Hall has also undergone reconstruction, taking 20 years and today is home to the Municipal Council. Its Tower, reconstructed to look like the original one, rises to 80 meters, making it one of the highest town hall towers in Silesia. Currently being restored, Collegiate Church belongs to the oldest houses of worship in the area, as it was erected back in the times of the first rulers from the Piast dynasty. The Glogow theatre and St. Nicholas’s Church, though still in ruins, are worth taking a look at, too.
Every year since 1984 the town has been the venue for the Glogow Jazz Festival, one of the most prestigious festivals in the region of Lower Silesia, featuring the best local and international performers.
Remarkable for their post-glacial landscape, Glogow’s surroundings offer good opportunities for hiking and biking.
Glogow, a town of approximately 74,000 inhabitants, is situated on the river Odra, some 70 m above sea level. Two agglomerations, Poznan and Wroclaw, as well as the Czech and German borders are located no further than 130 km away.
The town is an important road centre in the north-western part of the Lower Silesian Voivodship, as it lies in close proximity to international road E-65 from Swinoujscie to Jakuszyce and further to Prague. National road N 34 links Glogow with the E-65 and continues on to Jarocin through Leszno. From Glogow there are direct rail connections with Warsaw, Krakow, Szczecin, Upper Silesia and Berlin.
Among the oldest towns in Poland, Glogow was founded in the 10th century as a Piast defensive town. It was established by the Slavic tribe called Dziadoszanie after it had joined the Polanie state. The new town was located at the meeting of two rivers, the Barycz and Odra (more accurately, on the islands on the right side of the river Odra).
From the 11th to the 13th century, Glogow had a vital role in defending the western borders of the Piast monarchy. It also rose to importance as a centre of church administration and a seat of castellans. In 1258 the Glogow prince, Konrad I, founded a “free and fortified” town based on the Magdeburg law. As the seat of the princedom, the town boasted a castle and fortified walls as early as prior to 1300.
Due to the town’s strategic location on the trade routes, Glogow’s townsmen obtained many privileges and benefits. Over time, Glogow grew to be one of the largest towns in the whole of Lower Silesia.
Ruled by the Piasts of Glogow and Zagan areas until the last quarter of the 15th century, Glogow then passed under the rule of the Polish princes Jan Olbrycht and Zygmunt. Later, the year 1528 saw the arrival of the Habsburg era.
In the course of the Thirty-year War, the town was transformed into a fortress, which would remain the main obstacle in its spatial and economic advancement for the next 250 years. From 1741 to 1808, under the rule of Prussia, Glogow served as a seat of one of two Silesian departments as well as the seat of the then national court.
At last, the abolition of fortifications at the dawn of the 20th century improved the chances for growth. However, towards the end of the Second World War Glogow was once again turned into a fortress and as such suffered almost complete destruction after seven days of fierce battles.
Once the war was over, Glogow became the seat of the local authorities, serving also as an economic background area of the agricultural district. The turning point in the post-war history of Glogow was the year 1957 with the discovery of copper deposits, followed by opening up of the Copperworks. Also of great importance to the town was the decision to commence reconstruction works, based on the medieval spatial plan.