Now it was time to discover the rest of Gdansk and to go back even further into the past. The city’s name is thought to originate from the Gdania River and was first recorded in 997 AD as urbs Gyddanyzc. After a number of changes, the name city finally changed to Gdąnsk in 1656. The German name is Danzig.
I had always been fascinated by Danzig / Gdansk since I saw some postage stamps in my father’s album. All the other stamps were from countries, but Danzig was a city, a free city between 1920 and 1939. The first stamps of Danzig were overprinted German stamps issued on 14 June 1920 though these were soon followed in January 1921 by the first stamps of the Danzig Free State. Stamps continued in use until the outbreak of World War II in 1939 when the Free City was made ‘unfree’ by the Third Reich.