November 8, 2020 – An interesting historical document was recently published by the mayor of Ploče, Mišo Krstičević, giving insight into the youngest Croatian town.
Morski.hr reports that although Ploče is the youngest town in Croatia, it matured primarily for its port and then military significance, and its oldest mention dates back to the 14th century.
Ploče was first mentioned in 1387 in a document kept in the Historical Archives in Dubrovnik. The document states that on November 6, 1387, Matej, son of Maroja Pripičeva from the island of Koločep concluded a contract with Milča from Novi Brdo according to which Matej should arrive with his ship from Dubrovnik to the port of Ploče, at the mouth of the Neretva (ad quedum locum dictum la Ploca que est in fluminis Narenti) to load about 600 small cattle and shackles and a small amount of wood. The historical archive also preserves a document from 1426 in which Ploče is mentioned by the Council of Intercessors of the Republic of Dubrovnik.
Ploče has a history of changing its name. First, during the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the name was changed to Aleksandrovo, after King Aleksandar I. Karađorđević, which lasted until the Second World War, and the Italian occupation, when Aleksandrovo became Porto Tolero (Italian port for transshipment, to load raw materials from Bosnia to Italy).
At the end of the war in 1945, the original name, Ploča, was restored. From 1950 to 1954, and from 1980 to 1990, the town was named Kardeljevo after a Yugoslav politician, Slovene Edvard Kardelj. In the meantime, from 1954 to 1980, the name Ploče was introduced for the first time, i.e., the plural of the original name, which dates back to the beginnings of the independence of the Republic of Croatia, on November 22, 1990.
Today, Ploče is a small modern port town at the mouth of the Neretva in Dalmatia in Dubrovnik-Neretva County. A little more than 6500 people live in Ploče, and the wider area, about 11000 inhabitants. The area of the city also includes the settlements Baćina, Banja, Komin, Ploče (Stablina, Birina and the inner city area), Peračko Blato, Plina Jezero, Rogotin, Staševica, and Šarić Struga.
The backbone of Ploče’s economy is the cargo seaport, which, after Rijeka, is the second-largest transshipment in the Republic of Croatia.
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