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Resita History, Romania

Resita is located in the region called Banat, a historic province which has always been important and attractive for the neighbors and in the same time for the great powers of those times. This fact was due to its geographic location as well as for the richness of its lands.

Resita, History – Early Times

Resita history seems to have begun in the XV century under the name Rechyoka and Rechycha but the first documentary proofs place this moment in the XVII century when the city is mentioned in a Turk tax register along with other nearby settlements. Later when Banat, the province where Resita is located, passes under Austrian rule the area is organized as a royal domain under the direct administration of the Vienna Imperial Court.

In 1717 another document mentions that “Retziza” has 62 establishments imposed by the newly arrived Austrian rule. From now on, Resita-Bocsa region distinguishes through a continuous presence in all the documents of the era – the Habsburgs being decided to start a systematic and intensive exploitation of the region. In 1738 – when a new Austrian-Russian-Turk war took place and also a strong anti-Habsburg rebellion initiated by the Romanians from Banat – for a short period of time, the surroundings of Resita were again under Turk rule, who named a supreme local ruler, Andrew from Carasova, in order to administrate the newly created province.

Documents confirm that in 1757, about 20 or 30 Romanian families were moved from Resita Montana, thus extending the city’s limits upstream on Barzava River. With this small coalmen colony, who extracted manganese for the Bocsa furnaces, begins the history of that part of Resita which will gradually increase in numbers with foreign colonists and will later become known under the name Resita Montana compared to old Resita – Roman Resita.

On 8 August 1768, Mary Theresa decides that several metallurgic works to be build in Resita. The Imperial Court approved the initiative on 31 October 1768, and on the 1 November 1769 the Resita Plants build-up began. On the 1 July 1771, when the two Resita together had about 750 inhabitants, two tall furnaces began to function, inaugurating the beginning of a Metallurgical Era in Resita. In 1776, 70 German families originary from Stiria, Carintia and Upper Austria were colonized here, between the years 1782-1787 were brought other families from the Rhine area, in 1846 about 200 families from Upper Hungary arrived here as well as 100 Czech families in 1850.

Resita, History - Modern Times

After the First World War defeat of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, all plants and domains passed – on 26 May 1920 as mentioned by a Royal decree – under the possession of a company with a majority of Romanian shareholders and was called “The Resita Iron Plants and Domains”. In the following period, the plants’ capacity is increased, production develops, city’s population increases (between the years 1920-1921 there were about 8000 workers) but still, people suffer from poverty.

After 1947, when the Communist Party takes over the power, the plants pass into the state’s property, developing, and increasing their capacity once with the construction of several new furnaces as well as some new factories. All these things determine an increase for the local population number and the city’s expansion. A good example in this respect is the construction of the Lunca Barzavei District in the sixties. Until 1924, Resita was considered to be a rural area but in 1925 it was declared a city and later in 1968 a municipality, a consequence of its recognition as a strong iron, steel and engineering works centre in a modern Romania.

Today Resita evolved in a modern, European city where about 75000 people live, but still decreasing compared to 1989 when Resita reached a number of 110260 inhabitants. Close by cities are Timisoara and Arad.

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