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Olecko o is a town in Masuria
Masuria is an area in northeastern Poland famous for its 2,000 lakes. Geographically, Masuria is part of two adjacent lakeland districts, the Masurian Lake District and the Iława Lake District...

, in the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship
Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship
Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, or Warmia-Masuria Province , is a voivodeship in northeastern Poland. Its capital and largest city is Olsztyn...

 of Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

, near Ełk and Suwałki. It is situated at the mouth of the Lega river into the Great Olecko Lake (Jezioro Oleckie Wielkie) on its south-western shore. Olecko is the seat of Olecko County
Olecko County
Olecko County is a unit of territorial administration and local government in Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, northern Poland. Its administrative seat and only town is Olecko, which lies east of the regional capital Olsztyn....



Marggrabowa was founded as a town by Albert of Brandenburg-Ansbach, Duke of the Duchy of Prussia
Ducal Prussia
The Duchy of Prussia or Ducal Prussia was a duchy in the eastern part of Prussia from 1525–1701. It was the first Protestant duchy with a dominant German-speaking population, as well as Polish and Lithuanian minorities...

, on January 1, 1560. The town's Masurian Slavic-sounding
Masurian language
Masurian was a dialect group of the Polish language, spoken by Masurians in a part of East Prussia that belongs to today's Poland. Masurians are regarded as being descendants of Masovians....

 name is derived from the German word Markgraf
A margrave or margravine was a medieval hereditary nobleman with military responsibilities in a border province of a kingdom. Border provinces usually had more exposure to military incursions from the outside, compared to interior provinces, and thus a margrave usually had larger and more active...

, the duke's title as the margraviate of Brandenburg
Brandenburg is one of the sixteen federal-states of Germany. It lies in the east of the country and is one of the new federal states that were re-created in 1990 upon the reunification of the former West Germany and East Germany. The capital is Potsdam...

's prince. The city coats of arms still reflect the Brandenburg red eagle and the Hohenzollern black and white going back to Albert of Brandenburg Prussia. The populace became Lutheran-Protestant
Lutheranism is a major branch of Western Christianity that identifies with the theology of Martin Luther, a German reformer. Luther's efforts to reform the theology and practice of the church launched the Protestant Reformation...

 within the Duchy of Prussia in 1525.

At the same location as the town there has been since 1544 a hunting lodge called Oletzko. At a peninsula towards the lake, across the Lega river, in 1619 the Castle of Oletzko (Schloss Oletzko) was established as a regional administrative seat for the Dukes of Prussia.

In 1920, the East Prussian plebiscite
East Prussian plebiscite
The East Prussia plebiscite , also known as the Allenstein and Marienwerder plebiscite or Warmia, Masuria and Powiśle plebiscite , was a plebiscite for self-determination of the regions Warmia , Masuria and Powiśle, which had been in parts of East Prussia and West Prussia, in accordance with...

 was held in the area by the League of Nations according to the Treaty of Versailles
Treaty of Versailles
The Treaty of Versailles was one of the peace treaties at the end of World War I. It ended the state of war between Germany and the Allied Powers. It was signed on 28 June 1919, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. The other Central Powers on the German side of...

 on remaining in East Prussia or affiliation with the recreated state of Poland. In the whole district of Oletzko there were only 2 pro-Polish votes, so the county remained with Germany. Thus the City was renamed "Treuburg" ("Loyal Castle") in 1928.

Between 1818 and 1945, Marggrabowa was the seat of Oletzko County (Kreis Oletzko) in the province of East Prussia
East Prussia
East Prussia is the main part of the region of Prussia along the southeastern Baltic Coast from the 13th century to the end of World War II in May 1945. From 1772–1829 and 1878–1945, the Province of East Prussia was part of the German state of Prussia. The capital city was Königsberg.East Prussia...

 in the Kingdom of Prussia
Kingdom of Prussia
The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom from 1701 to 1918. Until the defeat of Germany in World War I, it comprised almost two-thirds of the area of the German Empire...

. Following the example of the town, in 1933 also the district was named Kreis Treuburg.


In the northern part of the town's market square, a Catholic
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

 (formerly Lutheran) church is situated on a tree-covered hill.


The Train Station in the western part of town is a regional railway junction: there were main lines to Gołdap, Ełk and Suwałki. The local railway connections to Mieruniszki, Kruklanki and Sulejki are out of service or dismantled. Currently only bus service runs from the train station.


Notable residents

  • Kurt Blumenfeld
    Kurt Blumenfeld
    Kurt Blumenfeld was a German-born Zionist from Marggrabowa, East Prussia. He was the secretary general of the World Zionist Organization from 1911 to 1914. He died in Jerusalem....

     (1884–1963), Zionist
  • Arthur Zimmermann
    Arthur Zimmermann
    Arthur Zimmermann was State Secretary for Foreign Affairs of the German Empire from November 22, 1916, until his resignation on August 6, 1917. His name is associated with the Zimmermann Telegram during World War I...

    (1864–1940), diplomat

External links