Początki i rozwój kopalnictwa naftowego w Bieczu i okolicach (1887-1939) The beginnings and the development of oil production in Biecz and the vicinity (18871939) Abstract In the middle of the 19th century the former royal city of Biecz was a small run-down town. Its period of splendour had come to an end with the First Partition of Poland and the subsequent abolition of the county (powiat) and the municipal judiciary. The presence of oil reserves in the Subcarpathian area (Podkarpacie) had
... odkarpacie) had been known for a long time. Initially, rock-oil (as crude oil was then called) was used as a lubricant, lamp fuel, or even for medicinal purposes. There were two oil wells in the Biecz area. One was situated at Harta, where five companies were involved in oil production in 1881. The other was at Załawie, across the Ropa River. Here the extraction of oil started officially in 1890. The outbreak of the First World War interrupted the development of the industry. After the end of the war and the establishment of the independent Polish state, petrochemical activities in Biecz and its vicinity were resumed. Thus in 1927, for example, 3921 tons of crude oil were extracted, while by 1935 the quantity had risen to 4353 tons. Oil from Biecz was probably taken for processing to refineries in Libusza, Glinik, and Jasło. In addition to oil, natural gas deposits were also exploited in the Biecz area. Indeed, in 1934 some 65,000 cubic metres were extracted. In the neighbourhood of Biecz small oil wells sprang up during this period in villages such as Strzeszyn, Racławice, Rzepiennik Strzyżewski, and Wójtowa. Thanks to the development of the petrochemical industry, the inhabitants of the region found employment and economic means to support their families. Abstrakt W połowie XIX w. Biecz był małym i zaniedbanym byłym królewskim miastem. Jego okres rozwoju zakończył się wraz z pierwszym rozbiorem Polski, a następnie zniesieniem powiatu i sądownictwa miejskiego. Obecność złóż naftowych na Podkarpaciu była znana od dawna.