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Freudenstadt im Schwarzwald.jpg
Coat of arms
Location of Freudenstadt within Freudenstadt district
Karte Freudenstadt.png
Germany adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Baden-Wuerttemberg location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Coordinates: 48°27′48″N8°24′40″E / 48.46333°N 8.41111°E / 48.46333; 8.41111 Coordinates: 48°27′48″N8°24′40″E / 48.46333°N 8.41111°E / 48.46333; 8.41111
Country Germany
State Baden-Württemberg
Admin. region Karlsruhe
District Freudenstadt
   Mayor Julian Osswald (CDU)
  Total87.58 km2 (33.81 sq mi)
732 m (2,402 ft)
 (2018-12-31) [1]
  Density270/km2 (690/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes
Dialling codes 07441, 07442, 07443
Vehicle registration FDS

Freudenstadt is a town in Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. It is capital of the district Freudenstadt. The closest population centres are Offenburg to the west (approx. 36 km away) and Tübingen to the east (approx. 47 km away).

Baden-Württemberg State in Germany

Baden-Württemberg is a state in southwest Germany, east of the Rhine, which forms the border with France. It is Germany’s third-largest state, with an area of 35,751 km2 (13,804 sq mi) and 11 million inhabitants. Baden-Württemberg is a parliamentary republic and partly sovereign, federated state which was formed in 1952 by a merger of the states of Württemberg-Baden, Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern. The largest city in Baden-Württemberg is the state capital of Stuttgart, followed by Karlsruhe and Mannheim. Other cities are Freiburg im Breisgau, Heidelberg, Heilbronn, Pforzheim, Reutlingen and Ulm.

Germany Federal parliamentary republic in central-western Europe

Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north and the Alps, Lake Constance and the High Rhine to the south. It borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, and Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands to the west.

Freudenstadt is a Landkreis (district) in the middle of Baden-Württemberg, Germany. Neighboring districts are Rastatt, Calw, Tübingen, Zollernalbkreis, Rottweil and the Ortenaukreis.


The city lies on a high plateau at the east edge of the north Black Forest, and is well known for its fresh air. Its city centre is famous as the largest market place in Germany. After Horb, it is the second largest city of the Freudenstadt district. The city has an administration partnership with the communities Bad Rippoldsau-Schapbach and Seewald.

Black Forest mountain range in Baden-Württemberg, southwestern Germany

The Black Forest is a large, forested mountain range in the state of Baden-Württemberg in southwest Germany. It is bounded by the Rhine valley to the west and south. Its highest peak is the Feldberg with an elevation of 1,493 metres (4,898 ft). The region is roughly oblong in shape with a length of 160 km (99 mi) and breadth of up to 50 km (31 mi).

Bad Rippoldsau-Schapbach Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Bad Rippoldsau-Schapbach is a municipality in the district of Freudenstadt in Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany.

Seewald Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Seewald is a municipality in the Freudenstadt district in Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. It lies in the Black Forest. The source of the river Nagold is situated in the municipality. There is a dam in the river near the village Erzgrube, forming the artificial lake Nagoldsee. Erzgrube lies 550 m (1,804 ft) above sea level. Other subdivisions lie between 750 and 850 m above sea level in the midst of the forests. 90% of the area is covered with forests.

Freudenstadt is a climatic health resort of international renown. In the 19th and 20th centuries, visitors of note included George V of the United Kingdom, the Queen of Sweden, John D. Rockefeller, and even the American writer Mark Twain. With its many hotels and guest houses, and its high-class cuisine, Freudenstadt remains a popular vacation spot for Germans from every part of the country. Among the many Germans of note who considered Freudenstadt a second home was the justice inspector Friedrich Kellner whose WWII diary is the subject of a Canadian documentary.

John D. Rockefeller American business magnate and philanthropist

John Davison Rockefeller Sr. was an American business magnate and philanthropist. He is widely considered the wealthiest American of all time, and the richest person in modern history.

Mark Twain American author and humorist

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American writer, humorist, entrepreneur, publisher, and lecturer. He was lauded as the "greatest humorist this country has produced", and William Faulkner called him "the father of American literature". His novels include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and its sequel, the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884), the latter often called "The Great American Novel".

Friedrich Kellner German Justice inspector

August Friedrich Kellner was a mid-level official in Germany who worked as a justice inspector in Mainz and Laubach. During the First World War, Kellner was an infantryman in a Hessian regiment. After the war he became a political organizer for the Social Democratic Party of Germany, which was the leading political party during the time of the turbulent and short-lived Weimar Republic, Germany's first period of democracy. Kellner campaigned against Adolf Hitler and the Nazis. During World War II, working as a civil servant at a small court house, he wrote a diary to record his observations of the Nazi regime. Based on conversations and attentive reading of newspapers, he described the various crimes of that regime. He titled his work Mein Widerstand, meaning "My Opposition". After the war Kellner served on denazification boards, and he also helped to reestablish the Social Democratic Party. He gave his diary to his American grandson in 1968 to translate into English and to bring it to the attention of the public. In the epilogue, the author's grandson Robert Scott Kellner tells how the diary came to be published: German publishers were not interested until in 2005 it was reported in Der Spiegel that former US President George H. W. Bush had looked at Kellner's original notebooks in the George Bush Presidential Library at Texas A&M University. He explained his purpose for writing the diary:


Since 1535 a monastery church existed in Kniebis.[ citation needed ] The building of Freudenstadt was ordered by duke Frederick of Württemberg in 1599. The designer was architect Heinrich Schickhardt.[ citation needed ] In 1799 the monastery in Kniebis was burned down by the French.[ citation needed ] Because of the Württemberg foundation Freudenstadt was almost entirely Protestant for a long time.[ citation needed ] The young church belonged to the dean's office respectively church district Herrenberg within the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Württemberg.[ citation needed ]

Kniebis mountain

The Kniebis is a 960-metre-high mountain ridge in the Black Forest and the name of a village to the south which is a dispersed settlement. The Kniebis mountain rises in the state of Baden-Württemberg, Germany.

Frederick I, Duke of Württemberg Duke of Württemberg

Friedrich I of Württemberg was the son of George of Mömpelgard and his wife Barbara of Hesse, daughter of Philip I, Landgrave of Hesse.

Third Reich and World War II

In World War II, on the nearly 1,000 meter high Kniebis, not far from the Alexanderschanze, a Command Center of the Armed Forces was built to defend the Western Front: the Führer's headquarter Tannenberg. Heavy Anti-aircraft warfare positions with the associated supply and accommodation buildings were built in the area as part of the LVZ West (Western Air Defense Zone), especially on the Schliffkopf and the Hornisgrinde. [2] In the Freudenstadt hospital many wounded were treated. Hitler's one-week visit to Tannenberg and Freudenstadt in 1940 (after the French campaign) at the inauguration of the headquarter was propaganda, which was reported in news reels. Thus, Freudenstadt including the nearby region in France has become a symbol of the Nazi regime and the French defeat, which in 1945 was to play an important role.

World War II 1939–1945, between Axis and Allies

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from more than 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 70 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

Western Front (World War II) military theatre of World War II encompassing Denmark, Norway, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, and Germany

The Western Front was a military theatre of World War II encompassing Denmark, Norway, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, and Germany. World War II military engagements in Southern Europe and elsewhere are generally considered under separate headings. The Western Front was marked by two phases of large-scale combat operations. The first phase saw the capitulation of the Netherlands, Belgium, and France during May and June 1940 after their defeat in the Low Countries and the northern half of France, and continued into an air war between Germany and Britain that climaxed with the Battle of Britain. The second phase consisted of large-scale ground combat, which began in June 1944 with the Allied landings in Normandy and continued until the defeat of Germany in May 1945.

Führer is a German word meaning "leader" or "guide". As a political title it is associated with the Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

On 16 April 1945, three weeks before the war ended, the city was unexpectedly attacked by the troops of the 1st French army under General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny. There was a large-scale destruction caused by bombing and shelling. [2] Freudenstadt fell, with interruptions, for about 16 hours under artillery fire. No residents dared to go to meet the French troops to surrender the city, conversely the French troops expected considerable military resistance. [3] [3]

Jean de Lattre de Tassigny French military commander

Jean Joseph Marie Gabriel de Lattre de Tassigny, was a French army general during World War II and the First Indochina War. He was posthumously elevated to the dignity of Marshal of France.

Since the water main line was destroyed by US air strikes and the main fire trucks had been destroyed by shelling, the fire could spread very well. [3] A handover took place only when the French troops had advanced to the town hall. [4] There were several dozen civilian casualties; about 600 buildings, 95 percent of the entire city, were destroyed directly or indirectly in the night from 16 to 17 April and 1,400 families afterwards were homeless. During the invasion of the French troops, and in the next three days there were many violent attacks by Moroccan units. [5] According to doctor Renate Lutz alone in her treatment have been more than 600 raped women. [6] [7] On remonstrances civilians got the answer, according to reports from witnesses, it was war, Freudenstadt must burn three days. [8]

Many of the remaining buildings were then claimed by the French occupation troops. [ citation needed ]Many families lived in makeshift roofed cellars.[ citation needed ] Overall, the average living space per inhabitant was reduced to less than eight square meters.[ citation needed ] The need was great, and the cleanup of the debris was initially slow.[ citation needed ]

Main sights

Market place and city church FreudenstadtMarktplatz.jpg
Market place and city church
Market place (Freudenstadt) Marktplatz (Freudenstadt) jm52237.jpg
Market place (Freudenstadt)

The market place, flanked by arcaded houses, is the largest market place in Germany.[ citation needed ] The Rathaus (Town Hall), at the market place, houses the museum of local history.[ citation needed ]

On the south side of the market place is the Evangelical Lutheran Church, with its green tower roofs. It was built between 1601 and 1608, and is considered the most significant building of Freudenstadt. It was built in the Gothic/Renaissance style.[ citation needed ]

The Friedrichsturm (Frederick's Tower) is a 25m high tower which is built 799m above sea level on the Kienberg. It was built of red sandstone from the northern Black Forest in 1899 for the 300 year anniversary of Freudenstadt. On days with a clear sky it offers a view over the whole Murg valley,a view over Dornstetten and Schopfloch.[ citation needed ]

Cultural and social life

The following social institutions are present: The children's and youth workshop EIGEN-SINN aims to promote personal, social and academic skills of children and adolescents in social group work.[ citation needed ] The Erlacher Höhe is committed to ensure that people will have respect and value in social need and to reduce social exclusion.[ citation needed ] The Diakonisches Werk works for the poor, marginalized and disadvantaged. In children's center Freudenstadt (KiJuz) open child and youth work is offered for primary school children and adolescents.[ citation needed ] The Catholic young community (KJG) Freudenstadt is involved in child and youth work.[ citation needed ] Regional daily newspapers are the Schwarzwälder Bote and the Neckar Chronik of the Südwest Presse.


The value added comes in 2006 from the service sector (54,2%), the manufacturing industry (45,0%) and from agriculture (0,8%). 2007 were in the urban area 2,832 guest beds available. The number of overnight stays was 339,292. [9]

The manufacturing sector is located mainly in the industrial areas.[ citation needed ] Particularly significant are the Gebrüder Schmid (photovoltaic, printed circuit boards, flat panel displays), the Robert Bürkle (equipment for surface finishing), the company Georg Oest mineral (mineral oil, gas stations, mechanical engineering).[ citation needed ]


Due to the central location in the Black Forest, four federal roads lead through Freudenstadt. At the market place the B 28 (Kehl-Ulm) meets the B 462 (Rastatt-Rottweil). Here ends also the B 500 (Baden-Baden-Freudenstadt). Since 1985, the B 294 from Bretten to Gundelfingen bypasses Freudenstadt in a north-south direction. [10]

Bus and train

Freudenstadt is the starting point of three railway lines. In 1879 construction of the Eutingen im Gäu–Freudenstadt railway connected the city to the railway network. It runs from Stuttgart over Herrenberg and Eutingen im Gäu to Freudenstadt. Because continuation into the Kinzig valley was already planned (and as part of the Kinzig Valley Railway was carried out in 1886), the main station was built southeast of the city, relatively far from the center. In 1901 the Württemberg part of the Murg Valley Railway to Klosterreichenbach was built. The 60-meter higher Stadtbahnhof north of the center is a Standardized railway station. [11] In 1928, a direct connection to Rastatt (Baden) was established .

Eutingen and Stuttgart are connected with the Gäubahn. There is a rail service every hour with consolidations in school transport. Since 2006, coming from Karlsruhe, S41 goes every two hours about Freudenstadt up to Eutingen where is connection to the Regional Express (RE) Stuttgart-Singen.

The connection to Offenburg is via the Kinzig Valley Railway. The trains of the Ortenau-S-Bahn (OSB), connect Freudenstadt hourly over Alpirsbach, Schiltach and Hausach to Offenburg. The central bus station (ZOB) with more than 40 bus lines is a main transport hub in the Black Forest. City buses run to destinations in the urban core. Public transport to towns in neighboring districts, such as to Oberndorf, Wolfach, Altensteig or Dornhahn. On the nights of Saturdays, Sundays and holidays an overnight bus service completes the night rail service.


Freudenstadt is home of the Amtsgericht, which belongs to the court Rottweil and the superior court Stuttgart. It is the seat of the district office of the homonymous district and home to the majority of its administrative authorities. There is also a notary and a tax office. It is the seat of the church district Freudenstadt of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Württemberg.


The schools sponsored by the city are on the one hand the Kepler-Gymnasium and the Kepler secondary school. Southeast towards the central station is the Falken-Realschule, not far away from the Hartranft Elementary School. The Theodor-Gerhard-primary school with integrated Werkrealschule as a second primary school of the main town is located opposite to the Kepler schools. Among the schools sponsored by the district are the Eduard-Spranger-School, a business school with an economic high school, the Heinrich-Schickhardt school as industrial and technical school with a technical high school and Luise Büchner School as domestic school with a nutritional scientific school. The Christopher's School, a special school, is found north the building yard.

Sons and daughters of the city

Other personalities

International relations

Freudenstadt is twinned with:

Related Research Articles

Tübinger Stift seminary

The Tübinger Stift is a hall of residence and teaching; it is owned and supported by the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Württemberg, and located in the university city of Tübingen, in South West Germany. The Stift was founded as an Augustinian monastery in the Middle Ages. After the Reformation, in 1536, Duke Ulrich turned the Stift into a seminary which served to prepare Protestant pastors for Württemberg. To this day the scholarship is still given to students in preparation for the ministry or teaching in Baden-Württemberg. Students receive a scholarship which consists of boarding, lodging and further academic support.

Gäufelden Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Gäufelden is a municipality in the administrative district of Böblingen, in the German state of Baden-Württemberg.

Fellbach Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Fellbach is a mid-sized town on the north-east Border of Stuttgart in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. With a population of approximately 43,700 as of December 2003, it is the second largest town in the District Rems-Murr-Kreis. The area of the town is 27.7 km2 (10.7 sq mi).

Offenburg Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Offenburg is a city located in the state of Baden-Württemberg, Germany. With about 57,000 inhabitants (2013), it is the largest city and the administrative capital of the Ortenaukreis.

Horb am Neckar Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Horb am Neckar is a town in the southwest of the German state of Baden-Württemberg. It is located on the Neckar river, between Offenburg to the west and Tübingen to the east. It has around 25,000 inhabitants, of whom about 6,000 live in the main town of Horb, and the remainder in 18 associated villages and districts which form part of the same municipality. If the entire municipality is counted, it is the largest town in the District of Freudenstadt.

Kinzig (Rhine) river in Germany

The Kinzig is a river in southwestern Germany, a right tributary of the Rhine.

Kirchheim unter Teck Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Kirchheim unter Teck is a town in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, in the district of Esslingen. It is located on the small river Lauter, a tributary of the Neckar. It is 10 km near the Teck castle, approximately 35 kilometres southeast of Stuttgart. It is the fourth city in the Esslingen district, forming a district centre for the surrounding communities.

Dornstetten Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Dornstetten is a town in the district of Freudenstadt in Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. It is situated in the Black Forest, 7 km east of Freudenstadt. It was founded in the early Middle Ages and is well known for its half-timbered houses.

Schiltach Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Schiltach is a town in the district of Rottweil, in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It is situated in the eastern Black Forest, on the river Kinzig, 20 km south of Freudenstadt.

Ortenberg, Baden-Württemberg Place in Baden-Württemberg, Germany

Ortenberg is a municipality in the town of Ortenau, Baden-Württemberg.

The Baden Black Forest Railway is a twin-track, electrified railway line in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, running in a NW-SE direction to link Offenburg on the Rhine Valley Railway (Rheintalbahn) with Singen on the High Rhine Railway (Hochrheinbahn). Passing directly across the Black Forest, through spectacular scenery, the route is 150 km long, ascends 650 metres from lowest to highest elevation, and passes through 39 tunnels and over 2 viaducts. It is still the only true mountain railway in Germany to be built with two tracks, and is the most important railway line in the Black Forest. It was built between 1863 and 1873, utilizing plans drawn up by Robert Gerwig.

Stuttgart–Hattingen railway German railway line

The Stuttgart–Hattingen railway, also known as the Gäu Railway is a 148.5-kilometer-long railway in the southern part of the state of Baden-Württemberg in Germany, running from Stuttgart to Hattingen. The Royal Württemberg State Railways and the Baden State Railways constructed the majority of this line between the years 1866 and 1879. However, the line in its present form was not completed until the Deutsche Reichsbahn finished construction on the connection between Tuttlingen and Hattingen in 1934. Today the partially single-track, fully electrified line features the high-speed Intercity-Express (ICE) service, with its tilting train technology, traveling from Stuttgart to Zurich. In addition, a multitude of local train services of numerous railway companies are on offer. The Gäu Railway is also a significant line in the North-South freight service system.

Kinzig Valley Railway (Black Forest) railway line

The Kinzig Valley Railway is a railway line in Germany that runs from Hausach to Freudenstadt and follows the Kinzig River that gives it its name. The line has numerous tunnels, is single-tracked and unelectrified.

Nagold Valley Railway railway line

The Nagold Valley Railway is a railway line in the northern part of the Black Forest in Germany which links Pforzheim with Horb am Neckar and, for most of its route, follows the valley of the River Nagold.

Offenburg station railway station in Offenburg, Germany

Offenburg station is in Baden-Württemberg and has seven tracks on four platforms. Offenburg used to be a railway town and the station was of major economic importance to it. In recent years the maintenance facilities and much of the rail freight yards have been closed. The station is very centrally located within the city and is easily accessible by 18 different bus routes from the central bus station, 50 metres from the railway station.

Eutingen im Gäu–Freudenstadt railway railway line

The Eutingen im Gäu–Freudenstadt railway is a railway line in the German state of Baden-Württemberg that runs from the cultural landscape of the Gäu to the eastern edge of the Black Forest, connecting Eutingen and Freudenstadt. It is a section of the Gäu Railway from Stuttgart to Freudenstadt opened on 1 September 1879.

Freudenstadt Hauptbahnhof railway station in Freudenstadt, Germany

Freudenstadt Hauptbahnhof is the main station in the town of Freudenstadt in the German state of Baden-Württemberg, and an important railway junction in the Northern Black Forest.

Eutingen im Gäu station railway station in Eutingen im Gäu, Germany

Eutingen im Gäu station is located in the town of Eutingen im Gäu in the German state of Baden-Württemberg. It is at the junction of the Stuttgart–Hattingen railway, connecting Stuttgart and Singen, and the Eutingen im Gäu–Freudenstadt railway, connecting Eutingen and Freudenstadt.


  1. "Bevölkerung nach Nationalität und Geschlecht am 31. Dezember 2018". Statistisches Landesamt Baden-Württemberg (in German). July 2019.
  2. 1 2 F. Wein, Die Luftverteidigungszone West (in German), Explorate Verlag, ISBN   978-3-937779-25-6
  3. 1 2 3 Hans Rommel: Vor zehn Jahren 16./17. April 1945 – Wie es zur Zerstörung von Freudenstadt gekommen ist. In: Freudenstädter Heimatblätter. Beiheft 1 Freudenstadt: Oskar Kaupert 1955 56
  4. Der deutsche Südwesten zur Stunde Null. Zusammenbruch und Neuanfang im Jahr 1945 in Dokumenten und Bildern. (paper back) Generallandesarchiv Karlsruhe (author). Publisher: Karlsruhe, Harschdruck, (1 January 1975)
  5. Volker Kopp, Besetzt. Französische Besatzungspolitik in Deutschland (in German), Berlin: be.bra-Verlag
  6. Bruhns, Annette. "Der Krieg gegen die Frauen". Der Ostfeldzug. Spiegel Special (in German) (2): 84.
  7. Margarete Dörr, „Wer die Zeit nicht miterlebt hat…“. Frauenerfahrungen im Zweiten Weltkrieg und in den Jahren danach (in German), Campus Verlag, p. 575, ISBN   3-593-36095-0
  8. Bundesministerium für Vertriebene, Flüchtlinge und Kriegsgeschädigte, Dokumente deutscher Kriegsschäden (in German), p. 181
  9. "Struktur- und Regionaldatenbank" (in German). Statistisches Landesamt Baden-Württemberg. Retrieved 1 February 2009.
  10. Straßenbaubericht 1985 (PDF; 4,5 MB)
  11. Rainer Stein, "Der württembergische Einheitsbahnhof auf Nebenbahnen", Eisenbahn-Journal Württemberg-Report (in German), Fürstenfeldbruck: Merker, Band 1 (V/96), pp. 80–83, ISBN   3-922404-96-0