History of the town
Dačice is one of the oldest towns situated in the charming countryside of the Bohemian-Moravian Highlands. The first mention dates back to 1183. About 200 years later in 1377, Dačice gained the privilege of town status. The town underwent its greatest period of prosperity at the time when the Krajíř family from Krajek became its owners. They made Dačice into their residential town, which brought a rapid boom to all spheres of life.
Burghers began to build imposing houses here. During the 16th century, the Krajíř family invited Italian architects who settled there and, thanks to their art, the angular gothic town was transformed into a Renaissance town. Houses gained Renaissance gables, and the new town hall, both chateaux and the tower of the Church of St. Laurence were built. A new town district grew up around the chateau.
The Baroque period was another architecturally important period for Dačice. At the end of the 17th century, great disasters hit the town. First, the town was afflicted by the plague and later destroyed by several fires. The most important and well-preserved Baroque landmarks are the premises of the Franciscan monastery with the Church of St. Anthony of Padua, the sculptural group of the Virgin Mary in front of the new chateau and the Church of St. Laurence, which creates a dominant feature of the town together with the neighbouring Renaissance tower.
The year 1843 brought a world's first to the town. Hardly anybody knows that such a common thing as the sugar cube was first created in one of the houses in Palacký Square in Dačice. The exhibition in the town museum and gallery tells the story of how the sugar cube first saw the light of day.
Dačice was also a pioneer in support for education and social life. In the 19th century, great changes in the state administration of then Austria-Hungary occurred. Dačice became the seat of the district authorities and it remained the capital of the district until 1960, apart from during the Second World War.
A chronological history of the town
- 1183 -The oldest written reference to Dačice, a parish on the junction of commercial roads. Dačice was in the possession of the country nobility.
- Mid. 13th century - Dačice was held by crossmen of the red star.
- 1339 - 1348 -Possession of the Dačice estate was transferred to the lords of Hradec.
- 1377 -The oldest documents declaring Dačice a town.
- 1459 -The oldest line of descent of the lords of Hradec dies out. The Dačice estate was bought by Volfgang Krajíř z Krajku and this marked the beginning of the period of greates prosperity for the town.
- 1559 - A Renaissance town hall was constructed.
- 1572 - 79 - The new residence of Krajířs was built, named the Old Castle.
- 1586 - 92 - The Renaissance tower of the St. Vavřinec church was constructed.
- 1591 - The first written mention of the construction of New Castle in Dačice.
- 1600 - The male line of the Krajíř family dies out.
- 1610 - Kateřina of Krajk sells Dačice to Vilém Dubský of Třebomyslice.
- 1623 - Dačice was sold to Lev Burian Berka of Dubá and Lipé.
- 1644 - The Dačice estate in hands of the Fürstenberks.
- 1645 - Swedes plundered the town. The decline of Dačice after the thirty-years war occurs.
- 1660 - 64 - The first Baroque building in the town - the Franciscan monastery founded by town´s mayor Jiří Kapeta.
- 1672 - 77 - The St. Antonín Paduánský church wal built.
- 1680 - The Black plague seized the town.
- 1690 - A large fire and other disasters caused the destruction of the Renaissance and Baroque apperance of the town.
- 1714 - Václav Vojtěch of Vrbno and Bruntál in possession of Dačice.
- 1728 - The Earl of Vrbno sold Dačice and estate to the councillor and envoy in Petrohrad. Earl Jindřich Karel of Ostein.
- 1775 - 88 - At the expense of the town Dean J. Neulinger and the owner of estate Earl Ostein built St. Vavřinec parish church (on the site of the original Romanesque and Gothic church).
- 1809 - The town changes its lordship for the last time. Dačice estate was inherited by a member of German imperial nobility Bedřich Karel of Dalberg.
- 1821 - The first forestry school in Moravia was founded in the town.
- 1829 - The first modern sugar-beet factory was founded in Kostelní Vydří near Dačice.
- 1833 - Moravia´s first sugar refinery was founded in Dačice.
- 1843 - The world´s first sugar cube was produced in Dačice.
- 1849 - Dačice becomes the seat of the political district, and a subregional office was established.
- 1868 - A district executive was established in the town. Dačice remained the seat of the district until 1960 (except for the period between 1940 - 45).
- 1878 - Jan Klang set up a factory for production of agricultural machinery.
- 1882 - A voluntary corps of firemen was established.
- 1884 - The educational and amateur actor association, Tyl, established.
- 1888 - A foundation and funds for support of the establishment of a town hospital were established.
- 1892 - The school council was set up.
- 1896 - The town museum and library were established.
- 1896 - A trade school with instruction in the Czech language was opened.
- 1902 - The town railway connecting Dačice with the surrounding area railway line Telč - Dačice - Slavonice was finished.
- 1940 - The production of pens in the company Stejskal - Novotný was launched (at present known as the joint-stock company CENTROPEN).
- 1945 - On 9th May the town was liberated by the Russian army.
- 1946 - The town was visited by president Edvard Beneš and his wife.
- 1951 - A large hospital centre was opened.
- 1953 - Teaching at the first secondary school in Dačice (an eleven-year secondary school, later grammar school) began.
- 1960 - The seat of the district in Dačice was abolished and the town along with surrounding villages was incorporated into the district of Jindřichův Hradec.
- 1961 - A well-equipped elementary school grounds was opened.
- 1962 - The construction of the biggest indusrial plant for the production of car parts was launched (now the joint-stock company TRW-DAS).
- 1979 - The first Festival of Child and Youth brass orchestras took place, which established a long-standing tradition in the town.
- 1983 - The town celebrated its 800th anniversary by a number of cultural and social events.
- 1990 - The histrorical centre of the town was proclaimed an urban conservation area.
- 1990 - The agreement on cooperation with Austrian town Gross-Siegharts was concluded.
- 1995 - Dačice was twinned with the Sviss town Urtenen.
- 1997 - In October, Dačice was visited by the president of the Czech Republic, Václav Havel.