Łódź (pronounced: Wudsch; German: Lodz or Lodsch) is a city in
Poland in the Voivodeship of the same name at the sources of the Ner
and Bzura and thus at the watershed between the Warta/Oder and the
Vistula. In the 19th century, Łódź developed from a small town with
fewer than 1,000 inhabitants to a city of over a million
inhabitants, shaped by the industrial age, historicism and Art
Nouveau (Secession). Łódź is also the center of Polish cinema, hence
the nickname HollyŁódź. The tourist center is located on Piotrkowska
The Polish name Łódź is pronounced Wuj (with a 'w' as in English window) and translates to "boat". In German, the city is called Lodz or Lodsch (both pronounced the same). The ancestral spelling, also among the German-speaking population, was always Lodz, but Lodsch only came into widespread use in the 1930s and became official in 1939. In any case, you should avoid the pseudo-German name Litzmannstadt. Unlike Warsaw, Kraków, Breslau, Posen, which have been in use for centuries and are therefore politically unsuspicious, Litzmannstadt was only used during the German occupation of World War II in 1940-45. This was to honor Karl Litzmann, a general in World War I and later a NSDAP politician. This name can therefore clearly be assigned to Nazi parlance and evokes associations with war, the ghetto and the Holocaust.
The first written mention of Łódź comes from the year 1332. Already in 1423 the town was granted city rights. However, it remained an insignificant small town until the 18th century. With the second division of Poland, Łódź became part of Prussia in 1793, during the Napoleonic era it belonged to the Duchy of Warsaw, after the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to Congress Poland, i. H. the Russian-ruled part of Poland.
During the period of industrialization, Łódź developed into a center of the textile industry - called the Manchester of Poland - and experienced rapid population growth. In 1806 the town had only 767 inhabitants, in 1830 there were already over 4,000, in 1850 over 15,000, in 1880 more than 77,000 and in the 1897 census Łódź was the fifth largest city in the Russian Empire with 315,000 inhabitants. Among those who moved there were initially many Germans (1839: 78% of the population), but their proportion later fell (1897: 40%; 1913: 15%), instead the proportion of Jews (1897: 31%) and Poles (1913 : 50%). Magnificent commercial buildings and manufacturer's villas documented the wealth of the city's industry, but at the same time there was great poverty and misery in the mass of the working class: Łódź only got a sewage system very late, the child and infant mortality rate was at times 70% and around 1900 it was still 80% % of the population illiterate. The novel "The Promised Land" by Władysław Reymont, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1897/98, is a testament to this time.
In independent Poland (1918–1939), Łódź was one of the largest cities, industrial and cultural center. Education and health care have been significantly improved. During World War II, the city was occupied by Nazi Germany. The large population of Łódź Jews were imprisoned in the “Litzmannstadt Ghetto” where they had to do forced labour. Those who did not already die from the miserable living conditions were deported from here to extermination camps. War destruction in Łódź was far less than in most other Polish or German cities. Since Warsaw, on the other hand, was almost completely destroyed, Łódź served as Poland's seat of government until 1948. It was even considered moving the capital here permanently, but then the decision was made to rebuild Warsaw.
Łódź has been the seat of the State Academy of Film, Television and Theater since 1948. It is one of the most important film schools in the world. Directors Andrzej Wajda and Roman Polanski, for example, studied here. Łódź's industry continued to play an important role, but the facilities were hardly modernized. The population continued to rise, and large prefabricated housing estates were built for the new residents. In 1971 the first successful strike in the history of the Polish People's Republic took place in Łódź, followed by hunger protests in 1981. The population peaked in 1988 at almost 855,000.
After the end of communist rule, the textile industry collapsed and the city experienced severe economic decline and mass unemployment. The population fell below 700,000 in 2016. Since the turn of the millennium, however, the city has again undergone an exciting development. Many derelict factory sites have been converted into lofts, event venues, museums and shopping malls. Large companies such as Dell, BSH (Bosch and Siemens household appliances), Indesit, Gillette Poland International, Philips, Rossmann, ABB and Ceramika Tubądzin settled in the tax-exempt special economic zone of Łódź.
Łódź means "boat". The origin of
the name is controversial. The assumption that the name of the city
comes from the small river Łódka ("[small] boat") is not certain.
The name is possibly derived from the Slavic first name Włodzisław
or from the old Polish term Łozina for willow tree.
Coat of arms
The coat of arms shows a gold-colored wooden boat with an oar on a red background. From a heraldic point of view, it is a talking coat of arms because it depicts the city name; whereby the underlying interpretation - as with other speaking coats of arms - does not have to agree with the actual origin of the name. The first documented representation of a boat in the coat of arms is preserved on a city seal from 1535. This is likely to have been in use since the middle of the 15th century. The coat of arms was continued almost unchanged until 1817.
Later there were numerous modifications, among other things to adapt the coat of arms to the Soviet pattern. Of the numerous proposals to include the textile industry, which is important for the city, in the coat of arms, none was implemented.
The coat of arms was introduced on June 5, 1936, with one interruption during the German occupation: from 1941 to 1945 the coat of arms showed a golden swastika on a dark blue background.
The motto of the coat of arms is: Ex navicula navis, Latin for: From a boat a ship.
Open Air Museum of Wooden
Ludwig Geyer White Factory
Villa Leopold Kindermann
Church of St. Anthony of Padua
St. Casimir's Church
Church of St. Dorota
Museum of Cinematography
Basilica of St. Stanislaus
Alexander Nevsky Cathedral
Lodz Factory Museum
Modern Art Museum/ Contemporary Art museum
Archaeological and Ethnographic Museum
Łódź is an important transport hub in central Poland.
The airport Łódź-Lublinek "Władysław Reymont" (IATA:
LCJ) is of secondary importance with 250,000 passengers per year. There
is a direct connection with Lufthansa from/to Munich Monday to Friday.
Otherwise, Ryanair is also represented, which offers connections to the
British Isles (London-Stansted, Dublin, East Midlands) (as of winter
2018/19). The airport is located about 6 kilometers southwest of
The nearest major airports are Warsaw "Chopin" (WAW, numerous airlines and international destinations, 140 km away) and Warsaw-Modlin (WMI, only Ryanair; 145 km).
Despite its central location, it is relatively
difficult to reach Łódź from German-speaking countries, as the Eurocity
Berlin-Warsaw passes the city. From Berlin you can reach Łódź with a
change in Kutno in 6½ to 7 hours. From Vienna, you can get to Łódź in
8-9 hours by changing trains in Warsaw or Katowice (and possibly other
train stations). There is also an overnight connection with Euronight
and a connection in Kraków.
Within Poland, Intercity trains run approximately every hour from Warsaw to Łódź, the journey takes about 1:20 hours. From Kraków you can get to Łódź four times a day with the IC in 2½ to 2:45 hours without changing trains. From Katowice, there are three IC (2:45 hours) and one TLK (corresponds to Interregio, a good 3 hours) daily to Łódź, each with a stop in Częstochowa (almost 1½ hours), further connections with a change in Koluszki or Wloszczowa Północ.
From Poznań you can take the IC four times a day directly to Łódź (3½ hours), otherwise you have to change trains in Kutno or Ostrów. From Wroclaw there is a direct IC connection four times a day (3:40 hours), otherwise with a change in Koluszki. An IC (5:10 hrs) and twice a TLK (5½ hrs) depart from Gdansk four times a day, the route leads through Bydgoszcz (3:15–3½ hrs) and Toruń (2:40 hrs).
Łódź-Fabryczna Railway Station (Łódź Fabryczna; to the east of the city centre) . Main train station of the city. The historic terminal station was completely rebuilt and modernized in 2011-16 and now has underground through tracks.
Railway station Łódź-Widzew (Łódź Widzew; on the eastern outskirts, 7km from the city center) . Intercity Warsaw–Łódź–Wrocław and Gdansk–Łódź–Katowice/Krakow, regional trains from Koluszki.
Łódź-Kaliska railway station (Łódź Kaliska; 2 km west of the city centre) . Regional trains from Kutno, Pabianice.
Łódź is an important transport hub. There are
motorways and expressways around the city:
A1 motorway - part of the national road No. 1 and the European route E75: Gdańsk - Toruń - Łódź - Częstochowa - Upper Silesian Industrial District - border with the Czech Republic and Slovakia,
A2 motorway - part of the national road No. 2 and the European route E30: border with Germany - Poznań - Łódź - Warsaw - border with Belarus,
expressway S8 - part of national road no. 8 and European route E67: border with Lithuania - Białystok - Warsaw - Piotrków Trybunalski - Łódź - Wrocław - border with the Czech Republic.
National roads run through the city:
national road No. 14: Łowicz - Stryków - Łódź,
national road No. 72: Konin - Turek - Poddębice - Łódź - Brzeziny - Rawa Mazowiecka
and provincial roads:
provincial road No. 710: Łódź - Konstantynów Łódzki - Szadek - Warta - Błaszki,
provincial road No. 713: Łódź – Tomaszów Mazowiecki – Opoczno.
If you want to get to the city from the A2 motorway, take the exit at one of the junctions:
Emilia (access via Zgierz by national road No. 91),
Zgierz (access via Zgierz by provincial road No. 702 and national road No. 91),
Stryków (access via national road No. 14),
Łódź Północ onto the A1 motorway and use one of the junctions on the A1 motorway (as described below).
If you want to get to the city from the A1 motorway, take the exit at one of the junctions:
Brzeziny (access via national road No. 72),
Łódź East (access via provincial road No. 713).
If you want to get to the city from the S8 expressway, take the exit at one of the junctions:
Róża (access via the S14 expressway),
Rzgów (access via national road No. 91),
Łódź Południe onto the A1 motorway and use one of the junctions on the A1 motorway (as described above).
After the reopening of the Łódź Fabryczna station,
there are three bus stations in the city:
The multi-stand Bus Stop Łódź Fabryczna, located in the city center and forming one complex with the railway station - at the moment (April 2016) serves a small number of local, regional and long-distance connections, but they include all connections of PolskiBus.com carrier (for the moment currently there is no internet and telephone information about departures, please contact the carriers directly),
Łódź Kaliska bus station, located in the western part of the city, between the Łódź Kaliska railway station and Aleja Włókniarzy - serves most long-distance connections of other carriers, including many local and regional connections, as well as international connections (timetable, telephone information: 42 631 97 06 ),
the Północny bus station, located in the northern part of the city, in the area of the junction of ul.Źródowa and ul. Smugowa, near Wojska Polskiego Street - serves mainly local and regional connections and a small number of long-distance connections (timetable, telephone information: 42 631 97 06).
Some connections - not only local and regional, but also long-distance and even international - use city bus stops, without entering the railway station. One of the most important stops of this type are:
square in front of the Łódź Kaliska railway station - long-distance buses of the Neobus carrier and some PKS companies, as well as many international buses depart from there,
Zachodnia/Lutomierska – regional buses in the direction of Ozorków and Łęczyca,
Lutomierska/Zachodnia – regional buses in the direction of Poddębice,
Piłsudskiego/Śmigłego-Rydza – local and regional buses to the east (Andrespol commune, Tomaszów Mazowiecki),
Sienkiewicza/Piłsudskiego (some connections), Uniwersytecka/Rondo Solidarności and Wojska Polskiego/Strykowska - local and regional buses in the direction of Głowno and Łowicz,
Broniewskiego/Rzgowska - local buses in the direction of Tuszyn,
Kościuszki/Radwańska - local buses in the direction of Pabianice.
Although Łódź means boat in Polish, there is no navigable river in the city.
The main carrier serving urban public transport in
Łódź is MPK-Łódź. This company operates tram and bus lines. Bus line 6
and (partly) bus line 58 are operated by other carriers, but they are
also part of the public transport system. Within Łódź, the same ticket
Tram lines are marked with numbers from 1 to 18 (urban lines) and 41, 43, 45 and 46 (suburban lines). Bus lines are numbered from 50 to 99, there is also a bus line 6. Lines with several route variants have additional letter designations, e.g. 11B or 60A. Public lines used mainly to transport employees to plants and students to schools are marked with letters or combinations of a letter with a number, e.g. W or G2. In addition, there are 9 night lines: 8 bus lines marked from N1 to N8 and one tram line: N9. At night (on a shortened route) there is also a tram line 46.
A part of the public transport system are also trains of the Łódź Agglomeration Railway and Przewozy Regionalne (PolRegio), in which the city ticket tariff applies within the city limits, including single tickets. Until validators are installed on trains, in order to validate a public transport ticket, one should report to the conductor immediately after boarding the train.
The Łódź ticket tariff is based on time tickets. Tickets are widely available:
one-day (valid until 23:59 on a given day)
in the normal and discount version.
Weekend and 5-day tickets are also available, as well as group tickets: one-day, weekend and 5-day tickets, allowing for the passage of up to two adults and three children, the purchase of which, however, pays off even when traveling in a group of only two adults (unauthorized to the relief or one eligible and one not) or three children. For school groups and excursions, a one-day ticket that allows two adults and thirty children to travel can be useful.
Tickets can be purchased from ticket vending machines in all MPK vehicles (except bus lines 6 and 58). All machines accept contactless payment cards and either cash or traditional payment cards. Tickets are also sold in numerous kiosks and small shops, usually marked with the information "MPK tickets" or "Local Public Transport tickets in Łódź" and in vending machines installed at some bus and tram stops (they accept contactless and traditional payment cards as well as cash). After entering the vehicle (or buying it from the machine), the ticket must be validated immediately in the validator. The inability to purchase a ticket does not release you from the obligation to have it.
Ticket denominations can be combined so as to obtain an amount greater than or equal to the price of a ticket with the travel time we need. In such a situation, the tickets are validated in the validator one by one. In particular, you can validate two discount tickets instead of a normal ticket. In addition, if we decide to take a longer journey than we initially planned (but not longer than 60 minutes), the missing (or more) amount can be added to the already validated ticket - as long as it remains valid.
It is also possible to purchase a season ticket (commonly called a snapshot in Łódź and saved on an electronic card with the same name). Season tickets are available:
in the normal and discount version.
You can purchase a bearer ticket - this is more expensive, but it can be used by any person and is issued immediately, or a personal ticket - which is cheaper, but can only be used by one person, moreover, it is saved electronically on a personalized "Snapshot" card. ”, the release of which takes several days.
The bearer ticket is available only in the version for all lines, while in the case of a personal ticket, there is also the option of a line ticket, for two selected lines touching or intersecting at any point.
Special types of season tickets are the Common Łódzko-Pabianicki Ticket and the Common Agglomeration Ticket, allowing travel by public transport in Łódź as well as by city buses in neighboring Pabianice or by rail (Przewozy Regionalne and Łódzka Kolej Aglomeracyjna) to nearby towns.
Season tickets can be purchased at numerous points of sale listed on the website - however, collecting a personalized "Snapshot" card, necessary to purchase a personal ticket, is possible only at a few selected points. If you already have a "Migawka" card, you can also buy a season ticket at ticket machines and via the Internet.
The area of operation of Łódź public transport is
divided into two tariff zones, where zone 1 covers the area of the city
of Łódź, while zone 2 covers suburban areas. Timed tickets valid from 20
to 60 minutes are valid in both zones and there is no need to validate a
new ticket at the zone border. Other types of tickets are available in
three versions: for zone 1, for zone 2 or for both zones.
An important issue is that the cities of Zgierz and Pabianice, which are reached by public transport in Łódź, have their own public transport systems. Zone 2 of Łódź public transport does not include city buses in these cities - their own tariffs of Zgierz and Pabianice apply, largely based on single tickets.
The tariffs of these cities, however, do not apply to the night bus N4B to Pabianice and to trams 41, 45 and 46 - Łódź tickets are always validated in these means of transport.
In the case of bus lines 6 and 61 connecting Łódź with Zgierz, only Łódź tickets are valid within Łódź, and only Zgierz tickets are valid within Zgierz. This means that at the border stop you need to validate the ticket of the city you are entering.
Initially, Łódź was a small village within the
boundaries of the historic Łęczyca land, which was ruled by the Łęczyca
princes. The first mention is in a document signed by Władysław Garbaty,
the prince of Łęczyca and Dobrzyń, from 1332, which was related to the
perpetual possession of several villages, including the village of Lodza
("Łodzia"), to the bishops of Kujawy. City rights were granted to the
town in Przedbórz on Pilicą on July 29, 1423, and with them a permit to
Until the end of the 17th century, Łódź developed as a small agricultural town owned by the Włocławek bishopric (Łódź was a private clerical (aka church) city - as Łódź it is mentioned among the cities of the Włocławek bishopric in the Brzeziny poviat of the Łęczyca voivodship at the end of the 16th century). It then became a local trade and craft center. There were eight mills and workshops of wheelwrights, coopers, shoemakers, carpenters and butchers. In 1424, the bishop of Włocławek, Jan Pella, defined the duties and privileges of the inhabitants of Łódź, and from 1471, the keeping of municipal books began. In 1496, King Jan I Olbracht confirmed the royal privileges to hold two fairs a year and a weekly market in the city of Lodzya. At the peak of the development of "Łódź agricultural", at the beginning of the 16th century, the town had 70 burgher families and about 30 households (1534 - the first census).
The period of Swedish invasions in the mid-17th century led to its decline and partial depopulation. In 1739, 97 families lived in Łódź. In 1777, Łódź had 265 inhabitants, and there were 66 houses in the city. Until the Second Partition of Poland, Łódź was located in the Łęczyca Voivodeship in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.
After the Second Partition of Poland in 1793, Łódź was annexed by Prussia. At that time, it had only 250 inhabitants, and the built-up area included the present Old Town. Due to its small size, the Prussian authorities in 1794 considered revoking the town's town rights and transforming it back into a village. In 1798, as a result of the secularization of church property, it became a government town. From 1807 it belonged to the Duchy of Warsaw, and from 1815 to the Kingdom of Poland (Kongresówka), which belonged to the Russian Empire (Russian partition), although Russian troops had been in Lodz since 1813.
In 1820, on the basis of a document dated September
18, signed by Prince Governor Józef Zającek, the government of the
Kingdom of Poland included Łódź among the industrial settlements in the
Kalisz-Mazovian industrial district and assigned it the role of a
weaving and drapery center. It happened at the request of the then
president of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship Commission - Rajmund
Rembieliński. Natural and legal conditions were in favor of the
establishment of the factory settlement:
state ownership of land - the possibility of allocating plots to settlers,
large afforestation - wood as a building and fuel material,
numerous small rivers with a large drop (e.g. Ostroga/Łódka, Jasień, Olechówka) - energy to drive machines.
At that time, the city had about 800 inhabitants, and this decision was the beginning of the period of development of "Industrial Łódź". Industrialization was based primarily on craftsmen of various textile specialties coming to the city, who were encouraged by numerous privileges. In order to meet the needs of the settlers, the city authorities - in the years 1821-1823 - planned and marked out the "Nowe Miasto" drapery settlement. It was located south of the existing "Old Town", and its most important element was the centrally located, octagonal market square with four exit streets on its axes (Nowy Rynek - today's Wolności Square). From 1823 to the mid-19th century, mainly German-speaking weavers from Wielkopolska, Silesia, Saxony, Bohemia, Brandenburg and Moravia came to Łódź. These regions had a long tradition of weaving craft, which, however, was slowly declining due to industrialization processes and the loss of markets related to the new political division of Europe after 1815.
In the years 1824–1827, the settlement of "Łódka" was marked out, located to the south of "Nowe Miasto", along the axis of Piotrkowska Street. After the adjustment, the factory Łódź consisted of six parts located on a five-row length. It included: the Old Town, a cloth-making settlement called "New Town", a weaving settlement, a spinning settlement, the Szlązaki Settlement and the New District.
The Table of Towns, Villages, Settlements, Kingdom of Poland published in 1827 informs about 97 houses in Łódź and 939 inhabitants of the city. The rapid development of Łódź transformed it over several decades from a small town (in 1830, 4,000, and in 1865, 40,000) into an industrial metropolis with 300,000 inhabitants. inhabitants in 1900 and 500 thousand. in 1914. About 50% of the population of Łódź were Poles, 40% Jews, almost 10% Germans and 1-2% others. It was, therefore, a multinational city with internal problems between representatives of different nationalities, which the Russian authorities specially added to the conflict.
The beginnings of large-scale Łódź are related to the creation of the Kalisz-Mazowieckie industrial district, when large manufactories were established in the city, e.g. Ludwik Geyer's factory complex, developing since 1828 - with the first steam engine in the Kingdom of Poland and one of the first in the Russian Empire (1839 - today known as the "White Factory"). In the 1830s, it was the largest industrial enterprise in the Kingdom of Poland. Lodz exported its products mainly to Russia and China.
The period after the fall of the November Uprising (1831) brought customs barriers and some stagnation. In 1850, the town was quite large and numerous craftsmen operated in it: "13 coopers, 2 pavers, 4 tinsmiths, 7 feldshers, 6 carpenters, 6 cap makers, 4 roofers, 1 fuller, 3 tanners, 5 nailers, 2 bookbinders, 1 chimney sweep , 1 quacker, 1 coppersmith, 10 blacksmiths, 48 tailors, 8 wheelwrights, 2 basket makers, 2 hatters, 2 mechanics, 21 musicians, 4 milliners, 22 millers, 2 brass makers, 4 soap makers, 9 bricklayers, 32 bakers, 3 gingerbread makers, 2 brewers, 10 ropemakers, 4 washerwomen, 2 shearers, 2 pompomers, 8 saddlers, 33 butchers, 1 glovemaker, 10 locksmiths, 5 glassmakers, 5 seamstresses, 39 shoemakers, 31 carpenters, 7 engravers, 3 haberdashers, a brushmaker, 10 turners, 2 wax workers, 3 watchmakers, a goldsmith, 15 stove fitters”. In total, 18 craft guilds and two pharmacies had their headquarters in the city (the first pharmacy was established in 1829 at the New Town Market Square - today Plac Wolności 7, which in 1840 was moved by the new owner Bogumił Zimmermann, Master of Pharmacy, to the current address Plac Wolności 2) , a pastry shop, a cafe, three doctors and seven contemporary hotels - the so-called inn houses.
Another period of prosperity in the second half of the 19th century fueled the development of the internal market, the opening of the Fabryczna-Łódź railway line to Koluszki in 1865 on the route of the Warsaw-Vienna railway, the influx of cheap labor (after enfranchisement of the peasantry) and the re-opening of exports after the abolition by Russia customs border in 1851 (between the so-called lands taken directly into Russia and the Russian Congress Poland), and the introduction in 1877 of the so-called gold duties in the Russian Empire, to which Łódź belonged.
At that time, the industrial fortunes of the Scheiblers, Grohmans and Poznańskis grew. The first local banks were established (in 1872, on the initiative of Karol Scheibler - Bank Handlowy w Łodzi and Towarzystwo Kredytowe Miejskie w Łodzi), granting mainly commercial loans. The share of local capital in Warsaw banks also grew. Lodz has become a place of great opportunities, mainly for Jews, Germans, Poles and Russians - the proverbial Promised Land (this is a journalistic definition of Lodz, which is the title of a novel by W. Reymont). Their traces are still legible in today's city in the form of post-industrial complexes, architectural monuments, temples and cemeteries. In 1902, a private Warsaw-Kalisz Railway was launched, connecting Łódź with Warsaw via Łowicz in the east and via Sieradz with Kalisz in the west. The extension of the line from Kalisz to Ostrów Wielkopolski in 1906 gave Łódź a direct connection to the German railway network.
At the same time, the city was the scene of repeated strikes and workers' riots, sometimes turning into bloody incidents. One of the first was the strike in 1872 in Karol Scheibler's factory. In 1892, the so-called the Łódź rebellion against injustice towards employees, implemented by the Russian invader, ended with the intervention of the army. The largest clashes took place during the Revolution of 1905 on Polish lands belonging to Russia, during which, among others, Juliusz Kunitzer, a manufacturer, was assassinated.
Despite its size and individual investments, Łódź remained largely ignored by the central Russian authorities and grossly underinvested in terms of transport, technical and social infrastructure. The city, with a population of several hundred thousand, only had the dignity of a county seat, being subordinated to the governor residing in Piotrków, which was several times smaller. There were no railway connections to the north-west (Konin, Poznań), north (Kutno, Toruń) and south (Piotrków, Częstochowa, Zagłębie Dąbrowskie). There were no sewage and water supply systems, and education was at a low level. In 1845, a hospital was opened, financed by the city of Łódź, the government, private donors and the so-called music quotes ("play tax") paid in Łódź, Zgierz, Konstantynów and Aleksandrów (the facility was intended to serve the residents of these cities, who also had their representatives on the supervisory board).
On December 5, 1914, after the defeat suffered by the
Russian army in the Battle of Łódź, the Russian administration began to
evacuate the city. On December 6, the German army entered Lodz,
beginning a nearly four-year period of occupation of the city.
On February 15, 1916, the Saxon King Frederick August visited Lodz. He met here with Governor General Felix von Barth. After a longer conversation with him, he took a walk around the newly created park. Prince J. Poniatowski, and then met for dinner with representatives of the Łódź establishment at the "Grand" hotel.
As a result of the plundering policy of the German occupant (including the requisition of non-ferrous metals), there was a huge devastation of Łódź factories. Combined with the loss of eastern outlets, this contributed to a significant decline in the textile industry; it began to recover from these devastations only around the mid-1930s.
In November 1918, Łódź became part of the emerging
Polish state. Being the second largest urban center in Poland, Łódź for
the first time in history gained the rank of a regional administration
center, becoming the seat of provincial authorities. In 1924, the
missing railway connection to the north was built, connecting Łódź with
Toruń and Gdańsk via Zgierz, Łęczyca and Kutno.
Due to the strong position of national minorities in the city (in 1931, among the 357,000 inhabitants of Łódź, there were 59% Poles, 31.7% Jews and 8.9% Germans) and its industrial character, Łódź was deprived of any major investment support from the state Polish, which put the entire burden of infrastructure development on the shoulders of the local government. The magistrate was the first to introduce compulsory schooling in 1919, financed the construction of a network of hospitals and modern primary schools, and in 1930 greatly supported the creation of one of the first museums of contemporary art in Europe in Łódź. Until 1939, however, no university or any other state cultural institution of greater importance was located in Łódź. One of the country's main transport investments - the coal main - was laid out in the years 1928-1933 35 km west of Łódź, squandering the chances of a convenient connection between the city and the south of the country.
In the interwar period, Łódź was one of the cities where the communists had great influence. In 1934, about 40,000 people were cast on the invalidated communist list in the elections to the City Council. votes. From the beginning of 1936, the cooperation between the Łódź PPS organizations and the illegal KPP was quite good. In the next elections to the City Council in September 1936, almost 95,000 people were registered on the joint socialist-communist list. votes, which gave 34 seats in the 72-member Council.
In the first half of 1936, anti-Semitic excesses took place in the city.
Lodz was occupied by German troops on September 8,
The decree of the Chancellor of the Reich, Adolf Hitler, of October 8, 1939, on the new division and administration of the occupied territories of the Republic of Poland, did not decide the fate of Łódź. Initially, it was planned to create Łódź as the capital of the General Government, but the determination of the local Germans, supported by the activities of local German party and economic factors, was the basis for Hitler's decision to incorporate the city into the Reich. The solemn announcement of this act took place on November 9, 1939. Initially, Łódź was in the Kalisz region, but at the beginning of 1940 it received German municipal rights and the rights of a separate city. Also, the seat of the regency was moved from Kalisz to Łódź, creating the regency of Łódź.
On April 11, 1940, the name of the city was changed to Litzmannstadt, in honor of the German general Carl von Litzmann, thanks to whose maneuver in November 1914 the German army was victorious over the Russian army in the Battle of Łódź; it was one of the three largest battles of World War I on the Eastern Front (the other two: Tannenberg (Grunwald) and Gorlice).
After the incorporation of Łódź into the Reich (November 9, 1939), the streets of the city received new German names (later corrected three times: in 1940, 1941 and 1942). Among others, after the escape of Rudolf Hess to England, his street (currently Al. J. Piłsudskiego) was changed to Ostland Strasse.
On November 9 and 10, 1939, the occupiers carried out the so-called Intelligenzaktion Litzmannstadt, which was a regional part of the action carried out by the Germans throughout occupied Poland as part of the so-called Intelligenzaktion - "Action Intelligence". It was aimed at the Polish intellectual elite living in the Łódź region. On November 9 and 10, 1939, about 500 people were shot in the forests of Lućmierz, and by December a total of about 1,500 intellectuals, officials and clergymen were murdered there. In total, during the occupation, in the forest near Lućmierz, the Germans murdered about 30,000 people. people. They were mainly prisoners of Polish and Jewish nationality from Radogoszcz and the Łódź ghetto.
The Nazi administration isolated the entire Jewish population of the city (about 160,000 people) in a ghetto formally established in February 1940 (finally closed on April 30) in Bałuty, in the northern, most neglected district. In 1941, Jews from nearby villages and towns, from the liquidated ghettos there, and 20,000 Jews from Western Europe were deported to it. In addition, about 5,000 Gypsies were briefly placed here, who were soon transported and killed in Chełmno n. Nerem. In total, about 200,000 people passed through the Łódź ghetto. In extremely difficult living conditions, decimated by disease and hunger, they were almost completely murdered in two stages, in 1942 and in August 1944. First, in the extermination camp in Chełmno nad Nerem (1942), and during the liquidation of the ghetto in August 1944, they were killed in the gas chambers of Auschwitz-Birkenau. The Łódź ghetto was the first ghetto in Poland fully isolated from the outside world (the first one was in Piotrków Tryb; October 1939), the largest after the Warsaw ghetto (approx. 200,000 - approx. 400,000) and the last liquidated by the Nazis in Poland (VIII 1944). 877 people lived to see the end of the Nazi occupation in Łódź, and around 10,000 in other places, which is the largest number of Jews who survived the Holocaust.
Resettlement deportations, deportations to forced labor and persecution also affected the Polish population.
As a result of the German occupation, the city's population decreased to 488,284 (January 1945), compared to 680,000 (as of September 1, 1939). The first deportations from Łódź took place already in October 1939. They were placed in in the resettlement camp in Radogoszcz. At the end of December, the occupier moved out of the estate. "Montwiłła" Mirecki part of its inhabitants. The action was repeated at the turn of January 14-15, 1940, when the Nazis displaced about 5,000 remaining inhabitants of the estate. In the places left by the displaced Poles, the Nazis settled Germans brought from the USSR, Romania, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia as part of the action called "Heim ins Reich".
During the occupation period in the city there were: a system of German resettlement camps, a ghetto for Jews, several prisons, including the prison in Radogoszcz, a camp for Polish children and youth (the so-called camp at Przemysłowa Street). Sites of Nazi crimes committed against Jews and Poles are commemorated in the Łódź region by the Memorial Trail of the Victims of the Nazi Genocide.
Lodz was captured by the Red Army on January 19, 1945
as part of the Vistula-Oder operation. The city is occupied by units of
the 8th Guards Army, which is part of the 1st Belorussian Front (to
commemorate them, a Gratitude Monument was erected at the cemetery of
Soviet soldiers in the Poniatowski Park at Żeromski Street). Due to less
damage and the city's central location, within the new borders of
Poland, Łódź served as a temporary capital, which was caused by the
complete destruction of Warsaw.
During World War II, the population of Łódź decreased from 670,000 to 300,000. inhabitants, which was caused by the murder of the Jewish population by the Nazis and the displacement of a large part of Poles, as well as post-war departures of Germans.
The industry was significantly damaged, many buildings were destroyed, and machinery destroyed or stolen. Despite the difficulties, production in the Lodz plant was reactivated quickly. The city once again became the seat of the voivodeship authorities.
In 1945 the city limits were extended; included in Lodz, among others Brus, Charzew, Chocianowice, Chojny, Gypsy, Grabieniec, Lublinek, Łagiewniki, Łodzianka, Mikołajew, Larch, Moskule, Oddzierady, Olechów, Radogoszcz, Retkinia, Rokicie, Ruda Pabianicka, Sikawa, Smulsko, Stoki, Wiskitno, Złotno.
Pursuant to the decree of the PKWN of August 31, 1944, places of isolation, prisons and forced labor centers for "Nazi criminals and traitors of the Polish nation" were created. Labor camps No. 135, 163 and 168 were established by the Ministry of Public Security in Łódź.
It was only in the post-war period that the first academic schools were established in Łódź. Decrees of the state authorities of May 24, 1945 established the University of Lodz and the Lodz University of Technology. In 1945, the State Higher School of Fine Arts in Łódź and the State Conservatory of Music were founded - from 1946 operating as the State Higher School of Music, and from 1982 the Academy of Music. In 1949, the dental, medical and pharmaceutical faculties were excluded from the university, creating the Medical Academy.
In the years 1958–2002, the Military Medical Academy (WAM) operated in Łódź, educating health service officers (doctors, dentists, pharmacists and psychologists) for the needs of the army. The Academy has become one of the largest institutions of this type in the world, distinguishing itself from other medical schools with its specific atmosphere, combining military discipline with a high level of education.
In 1958, the State Higher School of Theater and Film named after Leon Schiller. The institution was launched as a result of the merger of two universities in Łódź - the State Higher School of Film, established in 1948, and the State Higher School of Acting (established in 1949 to replace the State Higher School of Theater in Warsaw with its seat in Łódź, renamed in 1954 to the State Higher School of Dramatic Arts in Łódź). Leon Schiller Higher School of Theater).
In 1945, Wytwórnia Filmów Fabularnych (WFF) was established, which soon became the largest center of film production in Poland. In 1967, the Universal Department Store "Uniwersal" was opened, and in 1972 the Cooperative Department Store "Central".
In the years 1945–1989 (as part of the 1973 Program for the Development and Modernization of Lodz), over 140 industrial plants in Lodz were modernized (including the Cotton Industry Plant named after the Defenders of Peace (Uniontex), named after Julian Marchlewski (Poltex), 1 May and People's Army (ALBA); Zakłady Przemysłu Wołnianego 9 Maj and Gwardii Ludowej). 70 large investments were put into operation, e.g. textile plants "Vera", Hosiery Industry Plant "Feniks", Silk Industry Plant "Pierwsza", Textile and Clothing Combine "Teofilów", producing carpets "Dywilan", clothing industry "Próchnik" "Wólczanka", "Chemitex-Anilana" synthetic fibers, "Unitra-Fonica" radio equipment, "Poltik" watch factory, "Polmo" car accessories factory, "Polfa" pharmaceutical factory, "Stomil" rubber factory, factory of transformers and traction apparatus "Elta".
In 1960, the city was awarded the Order of Builders of People's Poland.
In 1988, the "Polish Mother's Health Center" Institute was opened.
In 2015, some areas of the city were recognized as a "Historical Monument" under the common name "Łódź - the multicultural landscape of an industrial city".
Łódź applied for the organization of EXPO in 2023, eventually losing to Buenos Aires. The city hosted the "Green Expo" (International Horticultural Exhibition) in 2024.