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Constantza


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Author: ARDELEANU KONSTANTIN
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Prefects of Constanţa

Due to the special organisation of the province of Dobrudja after 1878, the prefects of Constanţa were extremely powerful civil servants. Initially, they appointed the mayors of all urban and rural communes from among elected communal councillors, they could revoke them, dissolve the Communal Councils and order the organisation of new elections, and they approved the budgets of all Communal Councils in their districts. As they also played an important part in the modernisation of the county capital, we include a full list of them below and references to some of the most diligent prefects.

Prefects of Constanţa County (1878–1916) [1]

1

Opreanu, Remus

November 1878 – June 1879

2

Elefterescu, Luca

July 1879

3

Opreanu, Remus

July 1879 – September 1881

4

Ciocârlan, Constantin

September 1881 – October 1882

5

Dan, D. S.

October 1882

6

Opreanu, Remus

October 1882 – May 1883

7

Grămăticescu, Grigore

May 1883 – April 1884

8

Persiceanu, George

April 1884 – April 1885

9

Culoglu, Emanoil

April 1885 – April 1888

10

Poteca, Constantin

April 1888 – August 1888

11

Filipescu, Alexandru

August 1888

12

Barozzi, Ioan

August 1888 – August 1889

13

Aslan, Ch. G.

August 1889

14

Scheletti, Scarlat

August 1889 – August 1891

15

Lăţescu, Gheorghe

August 1891 – November 1891

16

Dunca, Iulius

November 1891 – March 1892

17

Chiriţescu, Nicolae

March 1892 – June 1894

18

Andreian, Emil

June 1894 – July 1894

19

Istrati, Iorgu

July 1894 – October 1895

20

Iancovici, Dumitru

1895

21

Manolescu Sideri, Dumitru

1896

22

Quintescu, Dimitrie

March 1896 – July 1897

23

Ionescu, Luca

July 1897 – April 1899

24

Cănănău, Gheorghe

April 1899 – August 1900

25

Neniţescu, Ioan

August 1900 – November 1900

26

State, Dimitrie

November 1900 – February 1901

27

Quintescu, Dimitrie

February 1901 – April 1902

28

Vârnav, Scarlat

April 1902 – December 1904

29

Pariano, Constantin

December 1904 – May 1905

30

Capşa, Mihail

May 1905 – March 1907

31

Vârnav, Scarlat

March 1907 – December 1909

32

Ghica, Ioan T.

December 1909 – December 1910

33

Pariano, Constantin

January 1911 – October 1912

34

Irimescu, Constantin

October 1912 – November 1913

35

Metaxa, Nicolae

November 1913 – January 1914

36

Oancea, Luca

January 1914 – November 1914

37

Mumuianu, George

November 1914 – April 1918

Remus N. Opreanu (1844–1908)

Remus N. Opreanu studied law at the universities of Bucharest and Paris and philology in Italy, and defended a Ph.D. at the University of Pisa (1869). Back to Romania he followed a career in the juridical system and held different high juridical and administrative offices. In 1876 he was appointed prefect of Putna County, then general procurer at the Appellative Court in Bucharest. He was the first prefect of Constanţa County, and on 22 November 1878 he took over the district from the Russian military authorities. As prefect of Constanţa his name is related to numerous initiatives of institutional and cultural modernisation, such as the unveiling of a historical symbol – the statue of poet Ovid, unveiled in Constanţa’s central square. In the following decades, Remus Opreanu served as a councillor at the High Court of Cassation in Bucharest and was an MP in the Romanian Parliament [2].

Scarlat Vârnav (1851–1919)

Scarlat Vârnav took courses in engineering at Paris, and got his diploma in 1876. He was later appointed director of the National School of Bridges and Roads in Bucharest and then chief of the Direction of State Monopolies. He was prefect of Constanţa for two terms (April 1902 – December 1904 and March 1907 – December 1909). During his administration, he undertook an ample constructive activity, building in the entire county 117 schools, 42 churches, two hospitals etc. In the county capital he supported the completion of the administrative palace, of the royal palace and of the justice palace, as well as the modernisation of Queen Elisabeth Boulevard and of the communal casino [3].

Constantin Pariano (1846–1930)

The son of a prosperous family of land owners from Vlaşca County, Constantin Pariano graduated the Agricultural Institute of Gembloux (Belgium). He held several political and administrative offices (MP and prefect of Vlaşca County) before settling himself at Constanţa, where he was twice president of the County Council. He promoted the introduction of modern agricultural techniques in Dobrudja, where he also established a model farm. He was prefect of Constanţa three times (December 1904 – May 1905, January 1911 – October 1912, July 1921 – January 1922), and had a major contribution to the development of the local cultural life [4].

Mayors of Constanţa [5]

1

Alexandridi, Alexandru

December 1878 – August 1880

2

Holban, Panait

September 1880 – April 1882

3

Alexandridi, Alexandru

April 1882 – February 1883

4

Holban, Panait

February 1883 – February 1886

5

Coiciu, Mihail

February 1886 – September 1888

6

Holban, Panait

October 1888 – August 1891

7

Coiciu, Mihail

August 1891 – December 1891

8

Belcik, Alexandru

December 1891 – April 1892

9

Coiciu, Mihail

April 1892 – June 1897

10

Schina, Eugen

June 1897 – December 1899

11

Bănescu, Ion

January 1900 – June 1900

12

Polizu Micşuneşti, Mihail

June 1900 – September 1901

13

Georgescu, Cristea

September 1901 – November 1901

14

Tăruşanu, Pandele

November 1901 – February 1902

15

Georgescu, Cristea

February 1902 – September 1904

16

Benderli, George

September 1904 – December 1904

17

Holban, Panait

December 1904 – February 1905

18

Bănescu, Ion

February 1905 – April 1907

19

Georgescu, Cristea

April 1907 – May 1908

20

Andronescu, P. Virgil

May 1908 – August 1908

21

Boteanu, George

August 1908 – March 1910

22

Coiciu, Mihail

March 1910 – July 1910

23

Andronescu, P. Virgil

July 1910 – November 1910

24

Roman, N. Ioan

November 1910 – December 1910

25

Cănănău, Titus

December 1910 – October 1912

26

Salacolu, Mircea

November 1912 – August 1913

27

Andronescu, P. Virgil

August 1913 – October 1916

Mihail Coiciu (1842–1914)

Born in Cahul (Bessarabia), Mihail Coiciu studied at Cahul, Iași, Chișinău and Odessa. He was prefect of Cahul County and was moved to Dobrudja in 1878, when Romania ceded to Russia the province of Southern Bessarabia. He was director of the Prefecture of Constanţa, mayor of Constanţa four times (February 1886 – September 1888, August – December 1891, April 1892 – June 1897, March 1910 – July 1910) and then president of the County Council. During his terms important buildings were completed at Constanţa: the first Romanian school, a hospital, the communal palace (the city hall), the baths of “La Vii” and the old communal casino [6].

Ion Bănescu (1851–1909)

After completing his studies at Iaşi and Berlin, where he took courses in law, letters and history, Ion Bănescu was appointed school reviser for the districts of Cahul, Bolgrad and Ismail in Southern Bessarabia, whence he was transferred to Dobrudja (1879). In 1880 he became school reviser of Constanţa County and was involved in the organisation of local education according to Romanian laws. He was the founder and first director of the Teacher Training School (1893–1896), then teacher and director of “Mircea cel Bătrân” High School, the most prestigious Romanian school in Dobrudja during that period. He also held the political administrative offices of communal councillor and mayor (January – June 1900, February 1905 – April 1907), terms during which he initiated an ambitious plan of systematising and modernising the city. He contributed to the completion of projects such as: supplying Constanţa with drinkable water, introduction of electrical lighting, turning the city into a touristic destination, consolidation of the seacoast, modernisation of Queen Elisabeth Boulevard, construction of a new casino, transformation of Mamaia beach into a fashionable touristic resort [7].

 

Picture 1.3_1 Remus Opreanu

Source: http://www.prefectura-ct.ro/images/stories/galerie_prefecti/prefecti_vechi/full_pics/remus_opreanu.jpg

Picture 1.3_2 Scarlat Vârnav

Source: http://www.prefectura-ct.ro/images/stories/galerie_prefecti/prefecti_vechi/full_pics/scarlat_varnav.jpg

Picture 1.3_3 Constantin Pariano

Source: http://www.prefectura-ct.ro/images/stories/galerie_prefecti/prefecti_vechi/full_pics/constantin_pariano.jpg

Picture 1.3_4 Mihail Coiciu

Source: http://www.ziuaconstanta.ro/in-constanta/constanta-de-odinioara-in-imagini/constanta-in-documente-restituiri-partea-a-ii-a-45806-385445.html

Picture 1.3_5 Ion Bănescu

Source: http://constanta.ro/mamaia-numele-unei-legende-partea-i-1906-1920/

Websites:

Official site of the Public Library of Constanţa

http://www.biblioteca.ct.ro

Official site of the Prefecture of Constanţa

http://www.prefectura-ct.ro/

Official site of the Municipality of Constanţa

http://www.primaria-constanta.ro/

Archival sources:

Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale (The National Archives, Constanţa Branch), Prefectura Judeţului Constanţa (The Prefecture of Constanţa County), files starting with 1897.

Serviciul Judeţean Constanţa al Arhivelor Naţionale (The National Archives, Constanţa Branch), Primăria municipiului Constanţa (The Municipality of Constanţa), files starting with 1878.

 


[1] The complete list in Virgil Coman, Corina Apostoleanu, Prefecţii judeţului Constanţa (1878–1949 şi 1990 – până în prezent). Mărturii fotodocumentare (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2011), 11–73. Another list, with several differences, in Dicționar de personalități dobrogene, vol. II, Politică, administrație publică, armată, justiție, edited by Constanța Călinescu, Liliana Lazia, Ioan Popișteanu, Ion Faiter, Adriana Gheorghiu, Vanghelie Culicea (Constanța: Ex Ponto, 2005), 163–164.

[2] Petru Vulcan, Personalităţi dobrogene (Bucharest: Tipografia Regală, 1906), 23; Dicționar, 114–115; Coman, Apostoleanu, Prefecţii, 11; http://www.biblioteca.ct.ro/personalitati_dobrogene/remus_opreanu.htm. For a more detailed paper on his activity, Gh. Dumitraşcu, “Aspecte ale situaţiei Dobrogei în perioada 1878 – mai 1883. Activitatea primului prefect de Constanţa, Remus Opreanu”, Anuarul Institutului de Istorie şi Arheologie ‘A. D. Xenopol’ din Iaşi, 18 (1981), 293–304.

[3] Coman, Apostoleanu, Prefecţii, 59.

[4]Ibid., 61.

[5] M. Dobrogeanu Ionescu, Tomi – Constanţa (Constanţa: Tipografia Lucrătorii Asociaţi, 1931), 107; Dicționar, 165–166.

[6] Ibid., 34; Aurelia Lăpuşan, “Mihail Coiciu (Koiciu)”, in vol. Studii istorice dobrogene, edited by Valentin Ciorbea (Constanţa: Ovidius University Press, 2003), 135–155; http://www.biblioteca.ct.ro/personalitati_dobrogene/mihail_coiciu.htm.

[7] Nicolina Mihail–Ursu, “Activitatea lui Ion Bănescu în contextul modernizării Constanţei”, in vol. Comunicări de istorie a Dobrogei (Constanţa: Muzeul Naţional de Istorie şi Arheologie, 1983), vol. II, 153; Stoica Lascu, Constantin Vitanos, “Dimensiuni naţionale în activitatea publică şi ştiinţifică a dobrogenilor Ion Bănescu şi Constantin Brătescu”, in vol. Colegiul Pedagogic „Constantin Brătescu”. Valori ale civilizaţiei româneşti în Dobrogea, edited by St. Lascu and C. Vitanos (Constanţa: Poligraf, 1993), 113–149; Dicţionar, 23–24; http://www.biblioteca.ct.ro/personalitati_dobrogene/ion_banescu.htm.


References

Coman, Virgil, Apostoleanu, Corina, Prefecţii judeţului Constanţa (1878–1949 şi 1990 – până în prezent). Mărturii fotodocumentare [The Prefects of Constanţa County (1878–1949 and 1990 – Present Day. Photo-documentary Evidences] (Constanţa: Ex Ponto, 2011).

Dicționar de personalități dobrogene, vol. II, Politică, administrație publică, armată, justiție [Dictionary of Personalities from Dobrudja, vol. II, Politics, Public Administration, Army, Juridical System], edited by Constanța Călinescu, Liliana Lazia, Ioan Popișteanu, Ion Faiter, Adriana Gheorghiu, Vanghelie Culicea (Constanța: Ex Ponto, 2005).

Lăpuşan, Aurelia, “Mihail Coiciu (Koiciu)”, in vol. Studii istorice dobrogene [Historical Studies on Dobrudja], edited by Valentin Ciorbea (Constanţa: Ovidius University Press, 2003), 135–155.

Lascu, Stoica, Vitanos, Constantin, “Dimensiuni naţionale în activitatea publică şi ştiinţifică a dobrogenilor Ion Bănescu şi Constantin Brătescu” [National Dimensions in the Public and Scientific Activity of Dobrudja Personalities Ion Bănescu and Constantin Brătescu], in vol. Colegiul Pedagogic „Constantin Brătescu”. Valori ale civilizaţiei româneşti în Dobrogea [The “Constantin Brătescu” Pedagogical College. Values of Romanian Civilisation in Dobrudja], edited by St. Lascu and C. Vitanos (Constanţa: Poligraf, 1993), 113–149.

Mihail–Ursu, Nicolina, “Activitatea lui Ion Bănescu în contextul modernizării Constanţei” [The Activity of Ion Bănescu in the Context of the Modernisation of Constanţa], in vol. Comunicări de istorie a Dobrogei [Papers on the History of Dobrudja] (Constanţa: Muzeul de Istorie Naţională şi Arheologie, 1983), 151–158.

Vulcan, Petru, Personalităţi dobrogene [Personalities from Dobrudja] (Bucharest: Tipografia Regală, 1906).

 


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