Although Kovno itself was evacuated in June 1919, and shortly afterwards southern and eastern Lithuania, the area Mitau - Shavli - Taurogen remained in their hands until Dec. 13 of that year.
Under these circumstances the Bolshevist advance reached its culminating point in May 1919, when the Soviet armies occupied Telshi and Shavli in the north and Olita in the south, thus threatening Kovno itself.
Flax is mainly grown in the northern districts of Kiejdani, Shavli, Ponevyez and Rakishki.
The towns in order of importance are in political Lithuania: Kovno (Kaunas) with about 60,000 inhabitants, Ponevyez with 20,000, Shavli (Siauliai) with 8,146, Vilkomierz with 8,000.
The only first-class roads are: Kovno-VilkomierzDvinsk; Kovno-Mariampol-Suvalki; Mitau-Shavli-Tilsit.
Double lines are: Wirballen-Kovno-Koszedari; Janov-Shavli; Koszedari-Jewie (to Vilna).
Were built by the Germans during their occupation: ShavliPozeruni (to Tilsit); Shavli-Meiten (to Mitau); Memel-BajohrenSkudi (to Prekuln and Mitau).