Attnang-Puchheim is a municipality in the Hausruckviertel in the
Vöcklabruck district in Upper Austria, at the intersection of the
Vienna – Salzburg (Westbahn) railway with the Salzkammergutbahn,
with 9100 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2020). The responsible
judicial district is Vöcklabruck. The confluence of the Aurach and
the Ager lies near Attnang-Puchheim.
Attnang and Puchheim developed from settlements by Bavarian immigrants in the late 8th century to the beginning of the 11th century. Puchheim is first mentioned in 1135 and Attnang as Otenang around a hundred years later, in 1242. It was not until 1912 that the municipality name Puchheim was changed to Attnang-Puchheim due to the growing importance of the Neu-Attnang district.
In some writings, the year 1050 is mentioned as the date of construction for the construction of the festivals on the grove on the beech hill, but there is no documentary evidence of this. In 1585 the fortress burned down completely. Puchheim Castle, built in the following years, essentially corresponds to its present form.
The history of Attnang and Puchheim was largely influenced by the owners of Feste Puchheim until 1870. Today the castle with the beautiful arcade courtyard is a monastery and is owned by the Redemptorists who have been called to Puchheim for pastoral care. These were summoned in 1851 by Archduke Maximilian Joseph of Austria-Este, the then lords of Puchheim Castle. The pre-castle is owned by the municipality and the diocese of Linz.
In the castle chapel, which is consecrated to St. George, the last Spanish pretender to the throne of the first Carlist dynasty, Alfonso Carlos (I) of Bourbon and Austria-Este and his wife Maria das Neves of Portugal and the Duchess Maria Antonia of Bourbon, who died in 1936, were seated -Parma 1959 and her son, Prince René of Bourbon-Parma 1962 buried.
The last Austrian Empress Zita von Bourbon-Parma visited Austria in 1982 after a long exile, after Federal Chancellor Bruno Kreisky had made it possible for her to enter the country without renouncing the throne, contrary to the law. She came to Puchheim to commemorate her mother, Maria Antonia von Bourbon-Parma, at the grave.
Under Rector P. Matthias Paprian, the large pilgrimage basilica Maria Puchheim was built from 1886 to 1890, which was built in 1951 by Pius XII. was elevated to a minor basilica. It contains a Breinbauer organ from 1891. With 1,647 pipes on 24 registers, it is a medium-sized instrument, but quite large for the period of the romantic organs of the 19th century. Orgelbau Kuhn from Männedorf renovated the instrument in 2006. The precious instrument is also used in concert.
With the construction of the Salzkammergut Railway and its commissioning in 1877, the development of the place was set to a significant railway junction, since Attnang-Puchheim was already the terminus and transshipment point of the Niederstrasser Railway, Austria's first coal railway.
Towards the end of the Second World War, Attnang-Puchheim was badly damaged by American bombing raids on April 21, 1945, especially as the Allies feared supplies for the Nazis' alleged Alpine fortress. The attack by 300 aircraft lasted three hours. At least 700 people died in the hail of bombs (out of 2,340 bombs containing 640 tons of explosives), including many refugees from the eastern regions and from Silesia who were hit on trains at the station. The station also acted as a reloading station for a secret missile test facility in the Redl-Zipf subcamp. The attack made Attnang-Puchheim the city with the highest death rate in Austria during World War II.
After the end of the war, Attnang-Puchheim became an important place with industry and commerce as well as a large train station through the reconstruction; the locomotives had to be changed here because electrification ended in Attnang.
In 1955 it was decided to raise Attnang-Puchheim to a market town because of the great reconstruction effort after the war. On March 3, 1990, the city was raised.