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Galatz


Polish community    EN

Author: ARDELEANU KONSTANTIN

Catholics were mentioned at Galaţi since the 16th century, gathered around a church that burnt in late 18th century. The development of Danubian trade after 1829 resulted in a gradual increase of Catholic believers settled at Galaţi, so that the community numbered 365 persons in 1859 and 4,418 people by 1890s[1].

During the 1830s the erection of a new church was greatly supported by the consuls of Sardinia, Austria and France. In 1838 an administrative committee, presided alternatively by the Sardinian and Austrian diplomatic representatives negotiated with the local and central authorities for receiving an estate where to build a Catholic temple. The headstone was placed in July 1839 and, with donations from benefactors throughout Europe, the church was inaugurated in November 1844, in the presence of the Catholic bishop of Moldavia. However, it soon became a place of conflict between Italian patriots and Austrian supporters, as the former used it for presenting the national aspirations of the Italian people[2]. During the next decades, the strength of the “Catholic community” diminished, as its members switched towards their organisation in national associations.

As for the Protestants, their number was 72 in 1859 and almost 500 in 1890[3]. The community dates back since the early 1840s when, with the support of the Prussian and English consuls at Galaţi, the local Protestants required from the local authorities an estate for a cemetery. An epitropy was established in 1843, and the graveyard was ready in 1845. In 1853 the community also got a place for building a small church[4], completed a decade later, after receiving consistent public donations. The community also founded and supported a confessional school, later called the “German School”. And it was a proper name, as by 1884 the community numbered 458 persons, among whom 277 Germans, 82 Austrians, 39 Swiss, 26 Englishmen, 16 Russians, 7 Frenchmen, 5 Dutch, 5 Danes and 2 Romanians[5].

 


[1] Moise N. Pacu, Cartea judeţului Covurluiu. Note geografice, istorice şi în deosebi statistice, (Bucharest: Stabilimentul Grafic I. V. Socecu, 1891), 107–109; Vasile Docea, “Un fel aparte de toleranţă (organizarea comunităţilor catolică şi evanghelică din Galaţi)”, Străinii de-alături. Explorări în istoria minorităţilor şi a comunicării interculturale (Timişoara: Editura Universităţii de Vest, 2006), 122.

[2] Dimitrie Bodin, “Carlo Alberto preamărit de contemporanii din Galaţi şi Brăila”, Revista istorică română, 13 (1943), fasc. 1, 32; Docea, “Un fel aparte”, 126–135.

[3] Pacu, Cartea, 107. Docea, “Un fel aparte”, 123.

[4] Ibid., 140–149.

[5] Ibid., 151.


References

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Archival sources:

Bibliography:

Ardeleanu Constantin, “La comunità italiana nella città portuale di Galaţi nel periodo del Risorgimento (1830–1856). Il suo ruolo economico e cultural–nazionale”, in vol. Unità italiana e mondo adriatico–danubiano, a cura di Gizella Nemeth e Adriano Papo (San Dorlingo della Vale: Luglio Editore, 2012), 65–78.

Bodin, Dimitrie, “Carlo Alberto preamărit de contemporanii din Galaţi şi Brăila” [Carlo Alberto Glorified by His Contemporaries from Galaţi and Brăila], Revista istorică română, 13 (1943), fasc. 1.

Docea, Vasile, “Un fel aparte de toleranţă (organizarea comunităţilor catolică şi evanghelică din Galaţi)” [A Special Kind of Tolerance (the Organisation of the Catholic and Evangelical Communities of Galaţi], in vol. Străinii de-alături. Explorări în istoria minorităţilor şi a comunicării interculturale [The Neighbouring Foreigners. Explorations in the History of Minorities and of Intercultural Communication] (Timişoara: Editura Universităţii de Vest, 2006), 117–155.

Pacu, Moise N., Cartea Judeţului Covurlui. Note geografice, istorice şi în deosebi statistice [The Book of Covurlui County. Geographical, Historical and Mainly Statistical Notes] (Bucharest: Stabilimentul Grafic I. V. Socecu, 1891).

Tomi, Raluca, “Imigraţia italiană în spaţiul românesc. Italienii din Galaţi şi Ismail (1834–1876)” [The Italian Immigration in the Romanian Area. The Italians from Galaţi and Ismail (1834–1876)], Revista istorică, 19:3–4 (2008), 215–238.


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