Kozara, in Serbian and Bulgarian, means blackbird. The Kozara Mountain was named Kozara for the numerous numbers of blackbirds on the 3,000 ft mountain.
In the twelfth century, all the land around the Kozara Mountain came under the rule of a Catholic royal family, the Babonics. They were from Croatia and named their kingdom Slavonia. To gain control, the monarchy exterminated all non-Catholics living there. The home of the royal family was a town at the base of the mountain, called Kozarac.
By the end of the fourteenth century, the entire country of Slavonia was conquered by another Catholic monarchy, the Hrvatinics of Bosnia. The Babonics were killed. The Kozara Mountain was then a part of Bosnia.
During the late fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Bosnia was attacked by Turkey. The Turkish Empire executed the Hrvatinics and forced all of the Catholic Christians to become Islamic or Orthodox. Although Bosnia kept its name, it was now part of the Turkish Empire.
In the sixteenth century, all of the forts, monasteries, and churches were destroyed on Kozara Mountain. A large number of the Catholic population was killed while defending their homes and a significant number were forced into slavery. Others immigrated to Croatia, Austria, and Hungary. Most of those who remained on Kozara Mountain converted to Islam and a few practiced their Catholic faith in secret.
In the late sixteenth century, the abandoned Catholic monasteries on Kozara Mountain were used as Orthodox monasteries. The transforming of the old Catholic properties into Orthodox and Islamic ones coincided with converting the Catholic population to Orthodox and Islam.
In 1878 the area was once again occupied with war and was taken by the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. The Catholic religion was reinstated, but lived in peace with those of Muslim belief.
This peace only lasted for...