Ostrow Wielkopolski is a town in central Poland with 72,360 inhabitants (2008), situated in the Greater Poland Voivodeship; the seat of Ostrow Wielkopolski County. Recently, a small fortified dwelling dating from the 10th century was discovered on the north-east side of the town's limits. An archeological excavation is now in progress. Ostrow received town privileges in 1404 but the economic stagnation caused by fires, wars, and a weak 16th century nobility, led to the towns officials dropping its town status in 1711.
In 1714, one of the nobility of Ostrow, Jan Jerzy Przebendowski intervened at the royal court, for the status to be reinstated. By the power of a Royal Marshall (English: Marshal), Franciszek Bielinski, the town received its status back with greater privileges. Another noble family, the Radziwiowie took patronage over the town and looked over its many investments. The care of the towns owners, work of its people, dedication of its officials and its location, have favored the towns continuous growth. In Ostrow, a railroad hub was formed and became a vital point of the towns development. It also helped to establish its prominent status on the local and national scene. During the time of Partition and both World Wars, the town had become an important source for nationalist movements. One of the towns historic episodes was the so called Republic of Ostrow (Republika Ostrowska), which was the citizens upheaval of 1918. No blood was shed at that upheaval and all political powers were taken over from the Prussian authorities. In between the First and Second WW, Ostrow was one of the fastest growing towns: the number of inhabitants doubled, showy houses were built and modern Railcar Manufacturing (Fabryka Wagon) began.