Seinai: History

The oldest known information about Sejny comes from 1522. Sejny developed mainly thanks to the Dominicans who arrived here in 1602. Having the enormous estates they started building the brick church, they brought craftsmen and traders (mostly the Jews) to the town and they introduced church fęte. The fire in 1818 spread through the big part of the town, the valuable order`s library and old documents. Later in the history of Sejny prosperity started. The church became the cathedral and there was also the chapter`s seat. In 1826 in Sejny the seminary was open where the Lithuanian priests were studied and they were prepared to work in Lithuanian parishes here. After some time the seminary became one of the most thriving Lithuanian national rebirh`s center.

In 1905 the professors of the seminary and other clergymen set up a publishing company and in 1906 the print shop „Šaltinis” started working. The Lithuanian magazines, books, calendars, brochures and other publications were printed there.
Sejny was one of the biggest cultural and press centers those times. The great Lithuanian poet and bishop Antanas Baranauskas was on his apostolic duty here and in Sejny he was buried. The outstanding activists of Lithuanian national rebirth were studying in Sejny seminary. The most famous are: V. Kudirka – the poet and the author of Lithuanian anthem, V. Mykolaitis-Putinas – the writer, P. Bučys – the professor and  the bishop and many others.

After 1989 in Sejny region a few important events happened: near the basilica the bishop A. Baranauskas monument was built, the Lithuanian House was open where cultural Lithuanian life has been concentrated, people made efforts to build a new school complex where Lithuanian would be taught. Nowadays Sejny becomes again the important cultural Lithuanian center.

Lithuanian's in Poland