Vokiečių Street

Jan Bułhak. Vokiečių Street. 1944. Lithuanian National Museum of Art

If you moved to the 19th century but had little time, you could most probably find everything at the points of sale located on Vokiečių Street. At the time, mostly Germans lived here and Vokiečių Street had been a main commercial site for a few centuries. In the second half of the 19th century, Jews started settling here and engaging in trade. In his memoirs, Czesław Miłosz wrote: “Shops with big hand-painted signs clung to each other, lions’ faces, stockings of monstrous sizes, gloves and corsets announced that shops can also be found in courtyards. Moreover, sign plates on gateways advertised dentists, tailors, knitters, pleaters, shoemakers and so forth.” Golden bows, herring, buttons or pens – you could find everything here.

If you travel to the 19th century, don’t forget to visit Lejba Kacew’s fur and headdress shop (Lejba Kacew was the father of the world-famous writer Romain Gary). You could stay at the famous Hotel Europa, which was housed in the city’s tallest building in the 19th century (at Vokiečių g. 13). It was built using the masonry of an incomplete Piarist church in 1800 by architect Mykolas Šulcas.

egretfully, only half of it has survived to this day; buildings on the eastern side of the street, which stood where the present-day pedestrian promenade can be found, were destroyed during WWII.

Vokiečių g.
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