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Frampol: Polish Guernica

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Frampol was founded in 1705 by the owner of the estate - Franciszek Butler. Its layout was developed on the basis of the Renaissance patterns of an ideal city. The town has a unique street layout in the world. The creator of the Frampol architectural plan is unknown.

The foundation was a square with 500 m long sides, oriented by cardinal directions. This square was divided into two concentric rectangles around a large central square market with a frontage length of 225 m, so it was even larger than the Krakow market square (200 m x 200 m). The layout concept resembled a rope-rod net. The square was surrounded by four barn streets, which also provided access to the fields. The length of each barn street was approx. 500 m. The axes and diagonals of the concept formed four additional rectangular squares with sides of 68 meters. Its axes and diagonals formed 8 streets. The axial streets had a transit character and constituted the inlets of the roads to Janów, Biłgoraj and Szczebrzeszyn. The main north-south axis led to the church located outside the town layout. In the middle of the square, on the main axis, a town hall and an inn were erected.

Just like today, all the houses in the Market Square shared this address with their consecutive numbers. The house number one was owned by the heirs of Butler and was located in the middle of the Market Square. It was probably an inn and commercial house being called a town hall.

The square formed by present Szkolna, Radzięcka, Nowa and Stolarska Streets, which constituted the Market Square. Butlerowska Street became Północna, Targowa -  Wschodnia, Przemysłowa - Południowa, Wesoła - Zachodnia, Janowska Street has not changed its name, 3 Maja was Kościelna, Zamojska became Szczebrzeska, and Biłgorajska Street was called Tarnogrodzka.

The diagonal streets had no names - even the present-day Gorajska Street. The currently longest streets of Frampol include Kościelna, Orzechowa, Polna and Ogrodowa streets. They did not have their names in the past, because in the first half of the 19th century there were no houses there. They were called Back streets (Tylne) with the possible clarification of the West, South Backstreet, etc.

The names "Ulica Tylna" are still used in everyday speech, especially by older residents of Frampol.

Currently, the city has over 20 streets. The town hall and the inn have also disappeared. There is quite a large park and flower beds.

The buildings in the town were wooden. On the northern axis, there was also a wooden church  founded by M. Butler in 1739. The plots near the market square were used by craftsmen and merchants, and the outer plots were adapted to the requirements of small-scale farms, allowing the owners to build barns, cowsheds and pigsties. Until today, this layout has remained.

The single-story houses had their gables facing the street through front yards. These houses had a single row of rooms including a lobby, a main room, and a closet. Richer houses had two rows of rooms. The external feature of Frampol's layout was the external barn streets, surrounding the town. The Targowa Street may be an example of such a concept.

In 1851, the architect of the Zamość poviat, Hiacynt Dąbrowski, commissioned by the owner of Frampol, T. Niemirowski, developed a project to expand the town's premises at the expense of the market square by adding new building plots, parallel to the existing ones near the market square. The sale or lease of new plots was supposed to bring additional income to the owner...

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Frampol 1939 film

Our film is an attempt to answer many questions that surround the bombing of Frampol in September 1939. The Luftwaffe bombers raided a quiet town with no military significance and annihilated it in a matter of hours. The brutal attack is sometimes compared to the attack of the Basque town of Guernica y Luno that came 2 years earlier and which was the first testing ground for the German air force. Both events are linked to Major-General Freiherr von Richthofen - the commander of a separate air group. It was his planes that bombed Frampol and Guernica.

Our film will allow witnesses of the tragic events to share their memories of that September afternoon. We will present German documents, pilots' letters and notes of their commanders, we will show the surviving fragments of films and will listen to Polish and German historians. We will also consider why so little was said about the Frampol tragedy after the war. That Nazi’s raid on a defenseless town is one of the events in war history that cannot be forgotten. That's why this film is made.

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Co-financed with funds

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