Ivano-Frankivsk (Ukrainian: Івано-Франківськ), is a historic city located in southwestern Ukraine.
It is the administrative center of the Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast (province), and is designated as its own separate raion (district) within the oblast. Prior to 1962, the city was known as Stanyslaviv (Ukrainian: Станиславів; Polish: Stanisławów; Russian: Станислав; German: Stanislau; Yiddish: סטאַניסלאוו).
The city, named Stanisławów, was erected as a fortress to protect the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth from Tatar invasions. It was built on the site of the village of Zabolotiv, which had been known since 1435. The village and the land around it was bought by Stanisław Rewera Potocki from another Polish nobleman Rzeczkowski. The area was utilized for recreations and particularly for hunting. The city's name was later coined by the son of Stanisław, Polish nobleman Andrzej Potocki commemorating it to his father.
Andrzej received the Magdeburg rights for his city from the hands of Jan Casimir in 1662. The first architector of the Stanisławow castle was from Avignon, Francisco Corasini when Andrzej initiated the redesignation of Zabolotiv village into the city of Stanislav in 1650. The city had two main gates which were known as the Halicka gate and Tismenicka gate. The alternative names were Lvivska and Kamianecka respectevely. The names were given for the direction in which they were facing. There was one more smaller gate known as Armenian or Zabolocki. Also a new, big, fortified Potocki palace was erected in the place of old, smaller, wooden one. Today it is the military hospital. Already that year the Jews had obtained right of permanent settlement and permission to engage in work and commerce as "residents among the Polish-Ruthenian and Armenian nation", as well as "rights to leave the city at will". In 1666 the first city's ratusha was erected and built out of wood. Soon afterwards, when in 1672 the Turks conquered the fortress of Kamianets-Podilskyi, Stanisławów, together with Halych, became a strongpoint against Turkish forces. It was attacked and besieged in 1676, but the Turks did not manage to capture and pillage the city. However, Stanisławów was so badly destroyed that in 1677 the Sejm in Warsaw relieved the city of its tax duties.
Jews were permitted to build houses for themselves on the "Street of the Jews" (which then was by the flood bank). Later, the fortress also successfully withstood attacks by Turkish and Russian forces. Extensively rebuilt during the Renaissance, it was sometimes called Little Leopolis. The city was also an important center of Armenian culture in Poland, with an Armenian church, in which a painting of Mary was kept. The painting was in 1945 moved to Gdansk.
In 1772, after the Partitions of Poland it became a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and successively of the autonomous Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria. Under Austrian rule, Jews played quite an important role in civic affairs. Two well known families left their imprint at that time on the economic and communal life of Stanislawow at that time. The Horowitz family, who from the year 1784 held positions on the Rabbinate of Stanislawow, and the Halpern family, who were well-to-do, and were known for charitable deeds, communal work, and economic development. On September 28, 1868 Stanisławow experienced a major disaster. The city was engulfed in a big fire which destroyed the third of the city and completely wiped the market place of the town. The city required a major renovation and was almost completely rebuilt. From 1897 to 1919 Dr. Arthur Nemhein, was the mayor of the city who later was fired by Polish authorities in 1919 for cooperation with Ukrainian separatists. In the elections to the Austrian parliament of 1907, Dr. Marcus Braude, a Zionist delegate, gained the majority of votes. During World War I, the frontline was for some time in the area of the city, Russians and Austrians fought several battles in Stanisławów and its vicinity, and in 1917 Russian forces burned the central districts during the Kerensky Offensive.
In October 1918, the Austro-Hungarian Empire collapsed, and the Western Ukrainian People's Republic (ZUNR) was proclaimed.
In 1919, it was a subject of Polish–Ukrainian skirmishes, and it eventually was annexed by Poland as part of the Second Polish Republic as the capital of the Stanisławów Voivodship. It was occupied by Romanian army between May 25 - August 21 in 1919.
During the Polish-Soviet War in 1920, the Red Army took over the city for a brief period. After the Soviet retreat, Ukrainian troops loyal to Symon Petlura occupied the city for a few days. At this period of history the city was in the complete disorder.
According to the 1931 Polish census there were 198,400 residents in the Stanisławów county (159 per square kilometer, the area of the county was 1249 km².). Among them there were 120,214 Poles, 49,032 Ukrainians, and 26,996 Jews. Population of the city itself was as follows: 27 000 in 1900, 28 2000 in 1921 and 60 000 in 1931 (70 000 together with the suburb of Knihinin, which was in the 1930s a separate commune). During the interbellum period, Stanisławów was a large military base of the Polish Army, with two major units stationed there - 11th Infantry Division and Podolska Cavalry Brigade.
In the 1939 invasion of Poland by German and Soviet forces, the territory was captured by the Soviets in September 1939 and included into the Ukrainian SSR. Between the fall of 1939 and June 1941, the Soviet regime ordered thousands of inhabitants of the city (most of them Poles) to leave their houses and move to Siberia, where most of them perished (see: Population transfer in the Soviet Union)
There were more than 40,000 Jews in Stanisławów when it was occupied by the Nazi Germany on July 26, 1941. During the occupation (1941-44), more than 600 educated Poles and most of the city's Jewish population were murdered.
On August 1, 1941, Galicia became the fifth district of the General Government. On October 12, 1941, later called "Blutsonntag" ("Bloody Sunday"), thousands of Jews were gathered on the market square; then the Nazi forces escorted them to the Jewish cemetery, where mass graves had already been prepared. On the way the escort beat and tortured the Jews. At the cemetery the Jews were compelled to give away their valuables and show their papers. The men of the Security Police (Sicherheitspolizei; SiPo) then started mass shootings, assisted by members of the German Order Police (Ordnungspolizei) and the railroad police. The German Police ordered the Jews to undress in groups and then proceed to the graves where they were shot. They fell into the grave or were ordered to jump in before being shot. The Security forces shot between 8,000 and 12,000 Jews on that day.
Up to July 1942 most killings were carried out in Rudolf's Mill, and from August onward, in the courtyard of the SiPo headquarters. On August 22, 1942, the Nazi held a "reprisal Aktion" for the murder of a Ukrainian, which they blamed on a Jew. More than 1,000 Jews were shot. German policemen raped Jewish girls and women before taking them to the courtyard of the SiPo headquarters.
About 11,000 Jews were still living in Stanisławów when the next Aktion took place. On February 22 or 23, 1943, Brandt, who had succeeded Hans Krüger as SS-Hauptsturmführer, ordered the police forces to surround the ghetto—initiating the final liquidation. Four days after the beginning of the Aktion, the German policemen put up posters announcing that Stanisławów was "free of Jews."
When the Soviet army reached Stanisławów on July 27, 1944, there were about 100 Jews in the city who had survived in hiding. In total about 1,500 Jews from Stanisławów survived the war.
A formal indictment against Hans Krüger was issued in October 1965, after six years of investigations by the Dortmund State Prosecutor's Office. On May 6, 1968, the Münster State Court sentenced him to life imprisonment. He was released in 1986.
In Vienna and Salzburg there were other trial proceedings against members of the Schupo and the Gestapo in Stanisławów in 1966.
From 1944, it was a part of the Soviet Union until Ukraine gained its independence in August 1991, after the fall of the Soviet Union. The Soviets forced most of the Polish population to leave the city, most of them settled in the Recovered Territories.
In 1962 the name changed to honor Ukrainian writer Ivan Franko. Five years later, Ivano-Frankivsk National Technical University of Oil and Gas was established.
In the early 1990s the city was a strong center of the Ukrainian independence movement.
In 2002, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) called a move by the city council to honor Nazi war veterans, of the SS Galicia division whom the head of the SS, Himmler, congratulated in May 1944 for having cleansed Ukraine of all its Jews as "fighters for independence," inexcusable and "profoundly insulting." In 1986, a Canadian Commission on War Crimes reviewing possible deportation of certain members of the regiment from Canada had determined that the SS Galicia regiment should not be indicted by the Commission for war crimes, and that charges of war crimes by the Division had never been substantiated.
• Pre–1772: Stanisławów, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (within the Kingdom of Poland),
• 1772–1809: Stanislau, Austrian Monarchy (within the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria),
• 1809–1815: Stanislav, Russian Empire,
• 1815–1918: Stanislau, Austrian Empire, then Austria–Hungary,
• November 1918 – May 1919: Stanyslaviv, West Ukrainian National Republic,
• May 1919 – July 1920: Stanisławów, Poland,
• July 1920 – September 1920: Stanyslaviv, Galician Soviet Socialist Republic,
• September 1920 – September 1939: Stanisławów, Poland, capital of the Stanisławów Voivodship,
• October 1939 – June 1941: Stanyslaviv, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic,
• July 1941 – August 1944: Stanislau, capital of the Stanislau Kreis, Distrikt Galizien, Generalgouvernement,
• August 1944 – 1991: Stanyslaviv, (renamed in 1962: Ivano-Frankovsk), province capital, Ukrainian SSR,
* Stanislav fortress compound and Potocki palace
* Katedra - Catholic church
* Jesuit Kostel - later building after Jesuits were forced to surrender Katedra
* Fara - also known as Collegiate used to be the Kostel of Virgin Mary and Saint Stanislav
* Ratusha - former city hall
* Battle of Grunwald monument - commemorating the defeat of the Teutonic Order in 1410
Places of Interest
* Market square with the city's old town hall, today hosting an ethno-cultural museum. Around the square are the three main churches of the town: the Greek Catholic Cathedral, Latin Collegiate (at the moment used as an art museum), and the Armenian church (presently used by one of the Ukrainian Orthodox Churches). The mentioned composition is well seen on the top picture. The Armenian church there has blue domes.
* Shevchenko Park - a big park that consists of an amusement park, a big lake with swans, couple of full-size football fields, and many others interesting places worth of seeing.
* The White House - the big white house in the middle of the town and next to the Market place. It is the administration building of the Oblast administration. In front of the building there are two full-size sculptural monuments of Franko and Shevchenko.
* The Market place - a huge area that covers the old market and the new market with couple of supermaket stores locally known as the universal stores.
* 100m stretch (sto-metrovka) - part of the Halytska street that consists of series of shopettes and restricted to pedestrian traffic only.