Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Polish minority in Romania
There are over ten thousand Poles living in Romania - mainly in the villages of the Suceava region. There are even three exclusively Polish villages: Nowy Soloniec (Soloneţu Nou), Plesza (Pleşa) and Pojana Mikuli (Poiana Micului).
Poles in Romania are officially recognised as a national minority. As such, they have one seat in the Chamber of Deputies of Romania (currently held by Mr. Gerwazy Longher) and access to Polish elementary schools and cultural centres (known as "Polish Houses").
Polish settlement in Bucovina began in the early 19th century, when it was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It was a very attractive place to live because the Empire's government decided not to draft recruits to its army from there (the service in the Austio-Hungarian army was for a 14-year term then). Moreover, Bucovina was free from serfdom, attracting emigrants of German, Jewish, Czech, Russian, Italian, and Polish nationality.
There were also probably some waves of migration from Poland after the November and Kraków Uprising but most Poles were from peasant families relocated there by the Empire's authorities after they participated in the Jakub Szela insurrection.
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