Hall in Tirol



Hall in Tirol is a town in the state of Tyrol in Austria at 574 m above sea level. A. with 14,153 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2020). Hall is located in the Inn Valley, about ten kilometers east of the provincial capital Innsbruck. From 1938 to 1974 Hall was called "Solbad Hall".

Hall was first mentioned in a document in 1232 (Latin "salina in Intal iuxta Tavr castrum" "Saline in the Inn Valley near Thaur Castle") - the typical Hall name for salt production appears in a document in 1256 and 1263 ("ze Halle" "zu Hall" ).

Since the 13th century, the salt mine in Halltal has been the central industry of the city and the surrounding area. The importance of salt is also shown in the city coat of arms - two lions holding a salt vat. The salt was exported to Switzerland, the Black Forest and the Rhine region. The wood for the salt pans was also rafted from large parts of Tyrol on the Inn to Hall and fished out there using a wooden rake. The brine therefore had to be transported from the Halltal to near the river. Wooden pipes were used for this. In 1303, Hall was elevated to the status of a city and, due to the associated rights, it became a central market and trading town in North Tyrol (see below). In 1371, Duke Albrechts III. the markets of “statt ze Halle” and the “burger ze Halle” are expressly mentioned. In 1447 there was a severe setback in urban development, when large parts of the upper city were destroyed by a conflagration during a large city fire.

In 1477 Archduke Sigmund von Tirol moved the sovereign mint from Meran to Hall. The reason for this is probably to be found in the good fortification of the city and its proximity to the silver mines in Schwaz, which are now being exploited. Accordingly, it is hardly surprising that the first high-quality silver coin with the minting of the first thaler was struck in Hall in 1486. The mint in Hall was also very innovative in the 16th century; For example, machines, the so-called roller embossing machines, were used here for the first time for regular coinage. They became an export hit and came via Habsburg Spain (Segovia) to South America (Potosí), where the last copy of a roller embossing machine (a drafting device) has been preserved. Since its reopening in 2003, the coin museum in Hall's Hasegg Castle has had a reconstruction of this revolutionary machine.

The well-known Andreas Hofer Kreuzer from 1809, which were supposed to cover the urgent need for money during the Tyrolean struggle for freedom, were the last minting of the Hall mint.

In the 15th and 16th centuries, Hall was one of the most important cities of the Habsburg rule. There is a city view of Hall in the first courtyard of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, the paintings of which were made on the occasion of the wedding of Francesco I de Medici with a daughter of Emperor Ferdinand I. From 1501, Hall was also the place where the important collection of relics donated by the knight Florian Waldauf was shown to the numerous pilgrims. The Lutheran preachers who appeared particularly early in Hall, above all the important theologians Jacob Strauss and Urbanus Rhegius, managed to turn away from the excessive veneration of relics, which only gained popularity again with the Counter-Reformation.

The Haller Damenstift was founded in 1567; a little later, buildings for the convent of the Jesuits located here were erected near the newly built All Saints Church. In 1644 construction of the Franciscan monastery began at its current location. A great earthquake on July 17, 1670 destroyed most of the city's towers and caused great damage; The earthquake pillars for strengthening older houses still show the extent of the quake in the old town. This earthquake is estimated to have a strength of 5.2 on the Richter scale and is one of the strongest earthquakes in Austria.

The Tyrolean priest and folk poet Reimmichl, Sebastian Rieger, lived and worked in Heiligkreuz for many years.


During the Austro-Hungarian monarchy until 1914, Hall was a garrison town for the IV Battalion of the Tyrolean Kaiserjäger Regiment No. 4. During World War II, the bombing of the railway station, which is important for the Inn Valley route, caused considerable damage in the south-west of the city; the old town was spared major damage. On December 19, 1944, the railroad crossing at Loretto was destroyed by seven bomb hits. However, traffic on the Lower Inn Valley Railway and tram line 4 could be resumed after just a few weeks. On February 16, 1945, a carpet of bombs with a total of 323 impacts completely destroyed all railway systems and surrounding buildings. This meant that Hall station remained switched off until the end of the war. The second bomb attack left 70 dead and sparked several medium-sized fires. As the only culturally and historically significant building, the Salvator Church was hit in the attack on February 16, 1945. However, a fresco by the South Tyrolean painter Hans von Bruneck was discovered on the eastern wall of the choir. When, on May 3, 1945, at 9:15 a.m., American tanks approaching from Innsbruck moved into the Untere Stadtplatz, the Second World War was over for Hall.

The idea pursued shortly before the Second World War to turn Hall into a health resort (hence the name change to Solbad Hall in 1938) could only be implemented to a limited extent due to the chaos of war. With the Aus der Saline, the plans for a systematic expansion of the city into a health resort were buried, which was expressed in 1974/75 in the return to the old city name Hall in Tirol.

Salt mining ended in 1967, and the mansions in Halltal, which until then had been the accommodation of the miners, were converted into a small mining museum. However, the mansions were partially destroyed by an avalanche in 1999.

Historic market town

The city of Hall looks back on a long tradition as one of the most important marketplaces in Tyrol.

It was not only the sale of Hall salt that was an important impetus for the Hall markets. The wooden rake through the Inn River, which was necessary for salt production, made Hall the starting point for shipping on the Inn and thus the head station for trade across the Inn and Danube. The city law of 1303 also provided for the right of resignation for the city, which in practice meant that every trader had to "put down" his goods here.

But Hall was a market place even before 1303, as the princely land registers (income lists) show. Accordingly, the city had market rights since the 1280s at the latest. At first it was still a market for local suppliers, i.e. mainly food from the area around the city to supply the miners and the constantly growing population. These markets were held in the former Marktgasse (today Salvatorgasse) and on the upper town square; A market district developed around Schmied- and Marktgasse.

In 1356, Margrave Ludwig von Brandenburg granted the people of Hall the right to hold two annual fairs. In contrast to the normal market, the medieval fairs had a supra-regional function. The Hall annual fairs also attracted large numbers of foreign traders. From groceries to luxury goods, practically everything that a Haller merchant or ordinary citizen needed was offered here.

The annual markets lasted eight days and began in spring on the second Sunday to St. Georg (April 23), in autumn on the second Sunday to St. Gallus (October 16); since 1536 the date has been postponed by one week, so that the fair now takes place on the third Sunday after St. Georg or St. Gallus. Its opening was celebrated with the ritual of the “market call”: On the opening Sunday after the solemn service at 10 o'clock, the Fronbote from the balcony on the wall of the town hall courtyard announced to the assembled crowd on the upper town square that the most important officials and dignitaries of Hall with the mayor the top be present; the public reading of the market regulations followed. Even today, a wall painting on the back wall of the balcony reminds of the drummer who accompanied this event.


When Duke Leopold IV gave the town hall building to the Hallers in 1406, he also bequeathed the tree garden behind the town hall to the town. This then became the new market square of the city as a market square. The markets now mainly took place on the upper town square and on the market square between Bachlechnerstraße, Krippgasse and the back of the town hall, which is now covered by the new middle school. The portal of the former passage that connected the two main squares can still be seen today on the left side of the facade of the Rathauscafé. Above the passage is the figure of Roland, who originally adorned the fountain on the upper town square and held a sword in his hand at the time of the market; it is considered a sign of market freedom and market jurisdiction of a place.

In 1648 and 1656 the two Hall annual fairs were expanded with the privilege of being able to sell cattle, but the great heyday of the Hall annual fairs came to an end in the 18th and 19th centuries at the latest, when foreign traders were increasingly denied access to the markets and the importance of the markets generally decreased due to increasing centralization. More recently the trend has been going back to the old market structure. To this day there is a weekly farmer's market, and the Advent market on the upper town square is one of the most popular Advent markets in Tyrol.

In February 2016, Austria's first air dome was built in Zollstrasse as a quarter for 240 refugees.



Historical old city
Mint tower - landmark of the city, part of Hasegg Castle. The 46 m high tower can be climbed via approx. 200 steps. From above you have a beautiful view over Hall and the Karwendel. Opening times: April - October: Tue - Sun: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. (last entry 4 p.m.). Admission prices: adults: € 5.50, children: € 4.50, family ticket: € 13.00, it is advisable. Combine climbing the tower with a visit to the "Münze Hall" adventure museum (combination tickets available) (as of 2016)
1 Hasegg Castle: was built to protect the city and to monitor the Roman road.
Town hall: Originally it was the town castle of Count Heinrich von Görz-Tirol (1295–1335), who also called it the “royal house”. In 1406 it became the property and town hall of the city as a gift from the Habsburg Leopold IV.
2 Nikolauskirche: The parish church in Hall was built in 1281 and constantly expanded. It is dedicated to Saint Nicholas, the patron saint of boatmen and miners.
Magdalenenkapelle: It stands next to the Nikolauskirche. The former cemetery chapel has served as a war memorial since 1923. The late Gothic winged altar (2nd half of the 15th century) and the wall paintings from 3 epochs (1410-1610) are worth seeing.

Adventure museum "Münze Hall". in Hasegg Castle Price: adults € 8, combined tickets with coin tower € 11.50.
3 Mining Museum: The Schmalzwaage, the former warehouse for natural produce, now serves as a museum building. You can see an accessible tunnel, shafts and a slide.