Szczuczyn [ˈʂt͡ʂut͡ʂɨn] is a town in Grajewo County, Podlaskie Voivodeship, Poland. As of 2004, it has a population of 3,602.

Piarist abbey
Piarist abbey
Coat of arms of Szczuczyn
Szczuczyn is located in Poland
Coordinates: 53°33′58″N 22°17′6″E / 53.56611°N 22.28500°E / 53.56611; 22.28500
Country Poland
Founded15th century
Town rights1690s
 • Total13.23 km2 (5.11 sq mi)
 • Total3,564
 • Density270/km2 (700/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Vehicle registrationBGR


Town center with the monument of Stanisław Antoni Szczuka

The town is located in the north-eastern outskirts of Mazovia, which has been part of Poland since the establishment of the state in the Middle Ages. In 1437, the Szczuka noble family of the Grabie coat of arms purchased the land, on which they founded the village, which was initially named Szczuki-Litwa.[1] Thanks to the efforts of Stanisław Antoni Szczuka, Szczuczyn was granted town rights around 1690 by Polish King John III Sobieski.[2] Szczuka brought the Piarists to the town and a Baroque Piarist church and monastery complex was built, which remains the greatest landmark of the town.[2] Szczuka also built a Piarist college, for which the Polish King established a scholarship fund.[2] Szczuczyn was a private town, administratively located in the Masovian Voivodeship in the Greater Poland Province of the Polish Crown. Stanisław Antoni Szczuka, who died in Warsaw in 1710, was buried in the local Piarist church. In the 18th century the town passed to the powerful Potocki family.[2] Factors that largely contributed to the development of the town were the presence of the school and the location on a trade route connecting Białystok and Königsberg.[2] Among the teachers of the Piarist college were Jakub Falkowski [pl], who then founded the oldest Polish school for deaf people in Warsaw, and Polish philosopher Bronisław Trentowski.[2]

In the Third Partition of Poland, in 1795, it was annexed by Prussia, in 1807 it became part of the newly established, although short-lived, Polish Duchy of Warsaw, and in 1815 it passed to the Russian Partition of Poland. Afterwards it saw a significant influx of Jews from Russia as a result of Russian discriminatory regulations and persecution (see Pale of Settlement). Szczuczyn was one of the sites of Russian executions of Polish insurgents during the January Uprising.[3] On May 15, 1864, one of the last battles of the January Uprising was fought there.[4] During World War I, the town was occupied by Germany, and after the war it became part of Poland when the country regained independence in 1918.

World War II


Some 56% of the town's 4,502 inhabitants were Jews prior to World War II.[5] During the invasion of Poland, which started World War II, it was captured and briefly occupied by German forces. On September 12–13, 1939, Einsatzgruppe V entered the town to commit various crimes against the population.[6] Germans sent 350 men, mostly Jewish, to forced labor, of whom only 30 returned after five months. The town was then turned over to the Soviets, who arrested the wealthy residents of the town, including many Jews. Some twenty Jewish families were expelled to Siberia on 21 June 1941 and approximately 2,000 Jews remained in the town.[7] In 1941 the local Polish underground resistance movement was weakened when the Soviets arrested its commander.[8] In June 1941, some 300 Jews were killed in a massacre carried out by the Polish inhabitants of Szczuczyn after the town was bypassed by the invading German soldiers in the beginning of Operation Barbarossa. The June massacre was stopped by German soldiers. A subsequent massacre by Poles in July killed some 100 Jews, and following the German Gestapo takeover in August 1941 some 600 Jews were killed by the Germans, the remaining Jews placed in a ghetto, and subsequently sent to Treblinka extermination camp.[7][9]



The local football club is Wissa Szczuczyn [pl]. It competes in the lower leagues.

Monument of Pope John Paul II

Notable residents


Stanisław Antoni Szczuka is buried there.


  1. ^ Słownik geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego i innych krajów słowiańskich, Tom XI, Warszawa, 1890, p. 862 (in Polish)
  2. ^ a b c d e f Słownik geograficzny Królestwa Polskiego i innych krajów słowiańskich, Tom XI, p. 863
  3. ^ Katalog miejsc pamięci powstania styczniowego w województwie podlaskim, Towarzystwo Opieki nad Zabytkami Oddział Białystok, Białystok, 2013, p. 15 (in Polish)
  4. ^ Katalog miejsc pamięci powstania styczniowego w województwie podlaskim, p. 51
  5. ^ Kopstein, Jeffrey S., and Jason Wittenberg. "Deadly communities: Local political milieus and the persecution of Jews in occupied Poland." Comparative Political Studies 44.3 (2011): 259-283.
  6. ^ Maria Wardzyńska, Był rok 1939. Operacja niemieckiej policji bezpieczeństwa w Polsce. Intelligenzaktion, IPN, Warszawa, 2009, p. 54 (in Polish)
  7. ^ a b Yad Vashem Ghetto Encyclopedia: Szczuczyn, Yad Vashem
  8. ^ Daniel Boćkowski, Na zawsze razem. Białostocczyzna i Łomżyńskie w polityce radzieckiej w czasie II wojny światowej (IX 1939 – VIII 1944), Wydawnictwo Neriton, Instytut Historii PAN, Warszawa, 2005, p. 204 (in Polish)
  9. ^ The Encyclopedia of Jewish Life Before and During the Holocaust: Seredina-Buda-Z, Shmuel Spector & Geoffrey Wigoder, page 1276