Zlin, the town where I live


... the modern town a community located amidst the picturesque landscape of the hilly area stretching along the river Dřevnice, between the Hostýn Peaks and the Vizovice Highlands. It is a town which has grown into one of the world´s major footwear centres, thanks to the genius of Tomáš Baťa, a shoemaker who became one of the most successful businessmen of his time. It is town which became the birthplace and stage for activities of a number of prominent personalieties from public, cultural, business and sporting life. It is modern, dymamic, busy, varied and relatively young town whose characteristic features have been reflected in every sphere of its daily life, ranging from its dynamic industrial sector and the education of younger generations to important cultural and social projects.

town of art and culture
For life in the city, predominated by modern, functional architecture of severe shapes and contours, everything has an entirely unique importance alongside that which has awakened memory and fantasy in human history. And already added to this are film, theatre performances, concerts, exhibitions or museum displays. Also each of the most well known historical buildings is a vigorous island in the current of contemporary lifestyle.

Tomáš Baťa 3.4.1876, Zlín - 12.7.1932, Otrokovice

Together with his brother and his sister Tomáš Baťa founded a shoe factory in 1894, which succesfully and dynamically developed; following his brother's decease in 1908 he became the sole owner of the company. Under his leadership the Zlín shoe plants grew in the 1920s and 1930s to become a powerful industrial combine, which apart from producing shoes was involved in other production and business activities. The renowned Baťa organisation of work employed state-of-the-art technology, autonomy of workshops, participation of employees in profits and losses, rationalisation and high work productivity. From 1923-1932 T. Baťa was town mayor. The fast development in this period transformed Zlín into a garden town. Baťa's industrial empire expanded all over the country and the world in the 1930s. T. Baťa ranked among the most important representatives of Czechoslovak industry. He was killed in an air crash.


The town of Zlín is an industrial and business center of Central Moravia. The history of the town stretches far back into the Middle Ages - first mentioned in writing in the year 1322.
An important turning point in Zlín´s history occured in the the year 1824 with the establishment of the Baťa family shoemaking firm. Thanks to the firm´s quite exceptional growth and prosperity and to the influence of Tomáš Baťa, who also served as mayor of the town, Zlín became a modern urban center during this period, distiguished by this architectural style and speed of life.
The Baťa tradition of enterprise and propitious geographical location are two of the many factors spurring Zlín´s intense growth in entrepreneurial and commercial activity, which set in after the change of political regime in 1989. Today, this growth far exceeds the national average of the Republic.
1332 First written report on the small town of Zlín
1779 First manufacture founded in Zlín
1849 Town destroyed by a great fire
1894 Founding of the Baťa shoe factory
1907 T.G.Masaryk elected MP in Viennese Parliament by voters of Zlín
1917 Regional rally of Sokol Sports Organization in Zlín
1923 T.Baťa elected mayor of Zlín, development of a garden town
1929 The Zlín chateau and country estate bought by the town with help of Baťa support fund
1945 Nationalization of the Baťa plants
1949 Zlín renamed Gottwaldov; from 1949 to 1960 the seat of the Gottwaldov Region
1989 November - change of political regimeDecember - T.Baťa junior visited Zlín
1990 Original name restored (from Gottwaldov to Zlín)First democratic elections to the Town Council since 1946Visit by President Havel Zlín legally made a city

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