Oskar Kolberg stayed in Wieluń probably in 1853; the following account of the town comes from his monograph:

“Wieluń is a town situated on an open plain. It used to be the capital of the Wieluń land, which belonged to the Ruda land along with the Ostrzeszów district. According to feudal customs, from 1370 to 1396, the Wieluń land, along with castles in Olsztyn, Krzepice, Bobolica and Brzeźca, was the property of Władysław, a duchy of Opole. The king of Poland, Kazimierz the Great, fortified the castle and town. In the years 1350-1 he surrounded the town with a defensive wall, which was demolished later on the orders of the Prussia government.

In the 16th century the town was blooming. However, in 1656 it was burnt by the Swedes who did not save even the Evangelical property (according to the account of Cellarius). Local people call the town ‘Jeleń’ [deer]. The story has it that the nickname comes from the 13th century, when Władysław Odonic killed a deer in nearby woods”.

 Kolberg gives the account of the customs related to Shrove Tuesday:
“On the last Tuesday of carnival peasants put a tree on a cart. They decorate it with some colourful papers, baubles, flowers, etc. They make a stop in front of each house where an eligible girl lives. They call her or take her out of the house by force. They order her to stand in front of the cart and buy herself out. They also announce a bidding of the girl; Some boys say ‘she’s worth a strand of hair’; others say ‘she’s worth loads of crap’, and some say that they ‘would not give for her a sheaf of corn’; but there are some who offer five, hundreds of or even a thousand zlotys. In the end they order her to buy herself out, and she gives them dozens of groszes (the smallest unit of money in Poland) or a sausage or some pork fat. In the afternoon she goes to the tavern to a dancing evening”.

Some demonological beliefs from this region include the following:
“‘Zmoras’ are female-like creatures who walk at night and stick their suckers to the bodies of sleeping men. They are believed to be thin and pale; they also lick theirs lips very often. Zmoras suck only those men whose medical condition results in milk discharge. When zmoras cannot find anyone to suck, they go to a pear tree or common aspen, i.e any tree which has some protrusions, which can be sucked. A zmora can change its shape into any living or dead creature (the latter happens when it is in danger). A clear-headed man who feels that he is being sucked should hold on the zmora tight. She can change into some really awful shapes, but in the end she resumes the original look and asks for freedom. If she is in the shape of an animal, the man should cut her limb; then everybody in the village will know who changes into a zmora at night”.

Kolberg’s manuscripts include some information about the Jews in the Kalisz region:
“Osipowicz wrote that local Jews have a special custom of buying a part of life, for instance, a few, or a dozen years. According to this custom, when an old man wants to live a few more years he buys them from a young boy. They agree on a price, let’s say 10 years for 500 Polish zlotys. They both are convinced that they will fulfil the conditions of the contract. Even if the old man dies just after signing the contract, they believe it must have been caused by some witchcraft”.