Międzychód is a county town situated on the Warta in the Gorzów Dale, ca. 78 km north-west of Poznań. The town itself is located on Miejskie Lake, the nearby tourist areas – such as a holiday-resort complex on Mierzyńskie Lake – have offered the site convenient conditions for development as a tourist hub. The town’s name is associated with passageway somewhere between fords where, as legend has it, a once-lost child was found, whose parents founded a settlement to their happiness.
The town’s name first appears in a 1378 historic source as Meczichod. The town was granted its municipal rights before 1400; no exact date of bestowal of its location-related rights is known, though. A new urban organism was settled toward the end of 16th century, with a third one set up a hundred years later at Lipowiec suburb. The town was developing as a cloth-manufacturing, crafts and trades hub.
After 2nd Partition of Poland in 1793, Międzychód was made part of the Prussian Partition territory. For a short time thereafter it functioned wihtin the frontiers of the Duchy of Warsaw (1807–1815), and then again, fell into the Prussian rule. Its then-applied German name of Birnbaum stood for ‘pear-tree’, referring to a feature in the city’s coat-of-arms. The nineteenth century saw unprecedented industrial developments there, e.g. an iron foundry was in operation. Międzychód was regained by Poland in the course of the Wielkopolska Uprising events (1918–1919). By the time World War 2 (1939–1945) broke out, the border with Germany was set some 4 km away, Międzychód being located closest to Poland’s western neighbour state.
Today, Międzychód is a food industry, education and tourism centre.
East of the market, you will come across a St. John the Baptist’s church of 1591. The temple underwent a thorough redevelopment in 18th to 19th centuries; its curiosity is human-skull-shaped bricks appearing in the tower’s walls. At 100 17-Stycznia Str. is a Regional Museum. Another sacred architecture monument is a late-classicist , former Evangelical church of Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart of 1838, situated in Lipowiec – the area whose name reflects the four rows of lime trees whose perimeters are up to 480 cm. A historic object of value is a 17th-century gravestone of Krzysztof Unruh, made of red marble and placed in the church’s vestibule. There is a cemetery by the church where you can see baroque gravestones dating to 18th century.
The aforesaid tourist attributes are crowned by the Pszczewski Landscape Park, partly located in Międzychód Commune area, and by the Kolno-Międzychodzkie Forest Reserve.
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