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History of Petrich

Petrich was included in the territory of the Bulgarian State during the reign of Knyaz Boris I (852-889). In the Middle Ages it was a solid Bulgarian fortress of utmost importance for Tsar Samouils wars (997-1014) with Byzantium. Petrich preserved its Bulgarian spirit under the Ottoman rule as well. In 16th century the Christian population was 90%. In the second half of 19th century the town decayed and at the threshold of 20th century there are about 6000 inhabitants. In 1873 the first school was opened, and here in 1878 the Macedonian Bulgarians signed and sealed their appeal to the Great Powers against the resolutions of the Berlin Congress of the same year according to which the Petrich district was detached from Bulgaria. From 19th January 1892 Petrich and its district were included in Bulgarian Exarchate. The town population actively participated in the national liberation struggles of Macedonia. In 1899 a revolutionary committee of the IMRO (Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organisation) was set up. Petrich was liberated from Turkish rule in the Balkan War (1912-1913). Part of the population emigrated but refugees from Vardar and Aegean Macedonia settled here. During the World War I the town was almost completely destroyed.

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