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Baden-Baden is a city in the Baden region, in the state of
Baden-Wuerttemberg. The city is known as "Germany's Monaco". It
houses the world famous casino. 55,000 inhabitants live on an area
of 140 km².
Baden-Baden became famous for its thermal baths. You can visit the modern Caracalla thermal baths on the one hand, and the Roman-Irish Friedrichsbad on the other.
Baden-Baden is particularly popular with older people. 60% of all residents are over 40, a quarter over 65 years. You will not find innovative pulsating nightlife, but the visitor can enjoy numerous cultural assets, the wonderful nature and the relaxing atmosphere and, last but not least, a wide selection of above all high quality shopping opportunities.
In the course of the community reform after 1970, a number of formerly independent communities became districts of Baden-Baden. These include the Rebland communities Neuweier, Steinbach (with the district Umweg) and Varnhalt. Like Baden-Baden itself, they belong to the Baden Wine Route.
The following neighboring communities are in the Rhine valley: Bühlertal, Bühl (direct train connection), Sinzheim (direct train connection), Hügelsheim (bus route 285), Iffezheim (bus route 218), Rastatt (direct train connection). In the northern Black Forest these are: Kuppenheim (bus line 243), Gaggenau, Gernsbach, Weisenbach, Forbach (Baden).
The first traces of settlement in the Eastern Valley can be found from the Mesolithic around 8000 to 4000 BC. BC, grave finds in the Rhine plain and in the transition to the Black Forest are also documented for the subsequent epochs of the Stone and Bronze Ages. On the battert there are still remains of a presumably Celtic ring wall.
Baden-Baden became particularly important with the Romans, who valued the thermal springs with a temperature of up to 68 degrees Celsius. After the occupation of the areas on the right bank of the Rhine under Emperor Vespasian, they founded a military camp south of today's old town near the secondary school on the "Rettig" plateau in the mid-1970s. After the settlement and bathing facilities in the area of the old town were created from there, the camp gave way to a representative building, which served the administration. The place was named Aquae (Latin for water / bath). It developed into a military spa and included several baths. The Kaisertherme was located in the area of today's collegiate church. According to a stone inscription, Emperor Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (Caracalla) had it luxuriously expanded in 213. The plan of the building was marked in the pavement of today's market square. The soldiers baths were in the area of today's Friedrichsbad and the ruins are open to the public. According to current knowledge, the core of the urban-like settlement was along the Rotenbach. According to the ceramic finds, Aquae is likely to have been built along a curved road between Lange Straße 16 and Gernsbacher Straße 42. This structure was probably already in place when it was founded around 75 AD and later only a few houses were added to the south of it. Furthermore, the excavations point to the existence of a consecration district southeast of the baths (Römerplatz) and a rubble place east of the place in the Rotenbachtal. There is also evidence of a food stall in what is now Gernsbacher Strasse and a canal which, coming from Rotenbach, ran south along Gernsbacher Strasse and was used to discharge sewage. North-west of the settlement on the Oos near today's Hindenburgplatz was a Roman burial ground with several grave monuments of both military and civilians.
The vicus was the capital of a self-governing local authority. This is first mentioned on an inscription from 197 AD as respublica Aquensis. From 213/217 the name Civitas Aquensis appears, which was later given the nickname Aurelia. The extent of this civitas is unknown; it is believed to be in the middle Upper Rhine Valley and in the northern Black Forest.
The Alamanni conquered the area around AD 260.
Migration period and the Middle Ages
Around or soon after 500 the area came under Frankish rule and became a border town to the Alemannic tribal area that began south of the Oos. The first written mention of Baden-Baden is controversial. According to a document that is often referred to as a forgery of the High Middle Ages and the original is not preserved, Merovingian king Dagobert III. in 712, according to another interpretation, Dagobert II. in 675, which Mark and its hot springs donated to the Weißenburg monastery. The place is called "balneas [...] in pago Auciacensi sitas" ("baths located in the Oosgau") and "balneis, quas dicunt Aquas calidas" ("baths they call Aquas calidas [hot springs]"). A document from the year 856 refers to the same donation and is also controversial. The first reliable post-ancient document is a deed of gift from Otto III. from the year 987, which names the place "Badon" and mentions a church for the first time. In 1046 the market rights of the place are mentioned for the first time.
Hohenbaden Castle was built around 1100. Count Hermann II from the Zähringer family acquired the area around Baden-Baden at the beginning of the 12th century and called himself Margrave of Baden or Lord of the Margraviate of Baden for the first time in 1112. The Lichtenthal Monastery was founded in 1245 and was the burial place of the Margraves of Baden until 1372. At around the same time (around 1250), Baden received city rights. Baden is expressly mentioned as such for the first time in 1288.
With the permission of Margrave Friedrich II, the thermal springs were used for baths from 1306. At the end of the 14th century a castle was built on the Schlossberg, it forms the core of today's New Palace. In 1417 King Sigmund visited the city of Baden. In 1453 the parish church was converted into a collegiate church and the burial place of the margraves.
In 1473, Emperor Friedrich III traveled. for a spa treatment and for Prince's Day in Baden. Under Margrave Christoph I, the residence was moved from Hohenbaden Castle to the New Palace in 1479.
The city of Baden-Baden in modern times
The first visitor's tax was levied in 1507, and a spa director
took care of the up-and-coming spa business. From 1500 the city was
part of the Swabian Empire. After the division of the margraviate of
Baden in 1535, today's Baden-Baden remained the capital of the
Bernhardin line of the ruling house and capital of the margravate
The city was hit by witch hunts from 1570 to 1631. 134 people in the city and its present-day districts got into a witch trial, at least 102 were killed. The last execution took place in 1631: Margaretha, wife of the locksmith Jakob Dioniss.
During the War of the Palatinate Succession, Baden-Baden was burned down by French troops on August 24, 1689, and as a result the spa operations also came to a standstill. In 1705 Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden-Baden moved the residence to Rastatt; Baden-Baden remained an official city.
With the Rastatt Congress, Baden-Baden was rediscovered at the end of the 18th century and subsequently expanded by the Baden state into a fashionable health resort. Many stately guests made the place the summer capital of Europe. Paris was the winter capital. Luxury hotels were built, the Kurhaus (1821-1824) and the casino (1810-1811), which were closed again in 1872 and reopened from 1933 to 1943. International horse races have taken place on the Iffezheim racing course since 1858. Initially, these were organized by the early tourism entrepreneur and patron Edouard Bénazet and financed with income from the Baden-Baden casino, of which he was the leaseholder. In 1872 the International Club Baden-Baden, founded in the same year, took over the organization of the horse races.
In 1844 the Badische Hauptbahn connected the suburb of Oos to the railway network. With the branch line to the city station in 1845, the health resort itself received its rail connection. From 1910 the Baden-Baden tram ran within the city, which was replaced by trolleybuses from 1949 to 1971.
The Baden-Baden music pavilion, built in 1858, was used for spa concerts until 1912. Today the turmeric shell stands in its place.
In 1863 the district of Baden was established, to which the districts of Achern, Baden-Baden, Bühl, Rastatt and Gernsbach belonged.
In 1924 the Baden office was dissolved, but in 1939 Baden-Baden was declared an urban district.
During the so-called "Reichskristallnacht" the synagogue was destroyed and numerous shops and apartments of Jewish citizens were devastated and looted in front of the police. The Jewish residents were deported to the Dachau concentration camp in order to force them to emigrate and to "Aryanize" their assets.
During the Second World War 4,365 people were interned as Nazi forced laborers in the camps in Baden-Baden, Steinbach, Malschbach and Sandweier. At the Lichtental cemetery there is a memorial stone for the 235 Soviet dead from Malschbach.
Baden-Baden was not one of the main targets of the strategic air war. On March 11, 1943, however, the Lichtenthal district was hit by bombs, with the St. Bonifatius Church being badly damaged and burned out completely an air raid on the district of Oos destroyed around 300 houses (ie around a third of Oos) or - such as For example, the Oos Church - badly damaged, and on January 2, 1945, another air raid on Oos train station and the barracks on Schwarzwaldstraße caused extensive damage. A total of 3.1% of the city was destroyed by air strikes. A total of 125 people were killed. Of the 9,615 apartments in existence in 1939, 296 (3.07%) were completely destroyed and 557 (5.77%) were badly damaged, and at the end of the war, 79,000 m³ of rubble had to be removed.
After the Second World War, Baden-Baden became the seat of the French zone government and the headquarters of the French armed forces in Germany. The casino resumed operations in 1950. The Südwestfunk was established in Baden-Baden, whose successor Südwestrundfunk still produces an important part of its program here today. In 1977 the branch line in the city center was shut down, and the Oos train station was named Bahnhof Baden-Baden. In 1981 Baden-Baden hosted the second state horticultural show in Baden-Württemberg.
In 1963 an IOC session was held in Baden-Baden and the 11th
Olympic Congress in 1981. In both conferences, enormous problems
were on the agenda, which were solved in Baden-Baden and ultimately
ensured the continued existence of the Olympic Games. In addition,
in 1981 the two cities of Calgary (Canada) and Seoul (South Korea)
were nominated as host cities for the 1988 Olympic Games. In 1996,
the International Olympic Committee (IOC) awarded Baden-Baden the
title “Olympic City” for its services to the Olympic movement.
Baden-Baden is the ninth city in the world to be awarded this title.
Its external symbol is the "Olympic Cup" created by Pierre de
Coubertin, which IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch personally
presented in 1997 in Baden-Baden.
On September 18, 1973 at 7:01 a.m., a severe gas explosion occurred in the cold store section of a slaughterhouse in the Oos district, in which 13 people died and another 10 were seriously injured. The entire cold store was destroyed. There were no gas pipes in the cold store itself. Investigations determined that the cause was a defective valve in an underground gas pipe running about 5 m deeper. From there, natural gas could get into the cooling hall above and be ignited by an electric switching spark.
The German Media Prize has been awarded in Baden-Baden since 1992. With the withdrawal of the French armed forces, which was completed by 1999, large areas of land and buildings were made available for civilian use in the western urban areas. The new Cité district has been under construction there since then.
On April 3rd and 4th, 2009, Baden-Baden was one of the host locations of the summit for the 60th anniversary of NATO. A working lunch for the heads of state and government of the member states took place in the Kurhaus.
Baden-Baden has been applying for the title of UNESCO World Heritage Site as Great Spas of Europe together with other major health resorts since 2010 and has been on the tentative list since 2014.
The Roman settlement, like many cities with medicinal springs,
was called Aquae, the Latin word for spring or bath. While no
epithet is known for the place itself, the administrative district
surrounding it bore the honorary title Civitas Aurelia Aquensis in
the 3rd century. Many authors associated this with Emperor Caracalla
('Marcus Aurelius Severus Antoninus'), who had the baths expanded.
According to a more recent theory, Emperor Elagabal ('Marcus
Aurelius Antoninus') was the namesake.
The city has been simply called Baden since the Middle Ages. The place name was also transferred to Hohenbaden Castle, built around 1100, the new seat of Hermann II, originally Margrave of Verona. In the course of the 12th century, Baden became part of its title; the margraviate of Baden was created, which was divided into two from the 16th to the 18th century and rose to become the Grand Duchy in the 19th century. The name of the state of Baden and thus also that of today's Baden-Württemberg has an origin in the name of the city of Baden (-Baden).
To distinguish between cities of the same name - Baden in Switzerland and Baden near Vienna, Badenweiler in the Old Baden Oberland was originally only called Baden - an addition was often necessary. This is how the city was also called Niederbaden, Margrave Baden and later Baden in Baden. The name Baden-Baden initially stood for the Catholic margraviate, which was separated from the Protestant counterpart Baden-Durlach from 1535 (meaning, for example, "Margraviate Baden, Baden Residence"). After the Catholic margraves moved their seat to Rastatt in the 18th century, Baden bei Rastatt became a common name for the city of Baden. When the Catholic line died out in 1771 and the Margraviate of Baden - now with Karlsruhe as a residence - reunited, Rastatt took a back seat. The name Baden-Baden passed from the former territory to the city of Baden, whose importance had grown again in the 19th century. The double name caught on long before it became official on September 1, 1931.
The urban district of Baden-Baden is surrounded by the district of Rastatt. Baden-Baden is located on the western edge of the northern Black Forest in the valley of the Oos, a small river that flows into the Murg about 13 km further near Rastatt. The eastern parts of the city nestle into the slopes of the Black Forest. The highest point in the urban area is the Badener Höhe at 1002 m. The western districts are in the foothills zone and the Upper Rhine Plain, where the 112 m deepest point of the district is in the Geggenau in the Rastatter Ried nature reserve. Viticulture is practiced in the foothills. The Baden-Baden Rebland belongs to the Ortenau wine-growing region.
With around 54,000 inhabitants, Baden-Baden is the smallest of the nine independent cities in the state and forms a middle center with partial functions of a regional center. In addition to the city of Baden-Baden, the municipalities of Hügelsheim and Sinzheim, both of which are located in the Rastatt district, belong to the central area of Baden-Baden. There are also relations with the French north of Alsace.
The city of Baden-Baden is divided into the following districts: Oos, Balg, Weststadt, city center, Lichtental with Oberbeuern and Geroldsau, Ebersteinburg, Steinbach, Neuweier, Varnhalt, Haueneberstein and Sandweier.
There are also numerous other residential areas or residential areas with their own names, some of which are very scattered: Gaisbach, Gallenbach (Varnhalt), Hungerberg, Malschbach, Mührich, Müllenbach, Schmalbach, Schneckenbach (Neuweier), Seelach, Umweg (Steinbach) and Unterer Plättig.
The districts of Ebersteinburg, Haueneberstein and Sandweier each have their own local administration with a local mayor. The districts of Steinbach, Neuweier and Varnhalt have a joint local administration (Rebland) also with a local mayor.
In the urban district of Baden-Baden there are three uninhabited enclaves of the neighboring community of Sinzheim, including the Fremersberg monastery.
The following cities and municipalities border the city of Baden-Baden. They are named clockwise, starting in the north, and all belong to the Rastatt district: Rastatt, Kuppenheim, Gaggenau, Gernsbach, Weisenbach, Forbach, Bühl, Bühlertal, Sinzheim, Hügelsheim and Iffezheim.
With 85.26 km² or 60.8 percent of the urban area (state average for Baden-Württemberg: 37.8%), an above-average proportion of the area is covered with forest. Approx. 75 km² of this is in municipal ownership, making the Baden-Baden city forest one of the largest in Germany.
In the area between Badener Höhe and the Black Forest High Road, Baden-Baden is part of the Black Forest National Park. Seven nature reserves are wholly or partly within the boundaries of the city. More than 60 percent of the community area is under landscape protection. The six extensive natural monuments in Baden-Baden include the Geroldsauer waterfall and the Wolfsschlucht. Dozens of individual trees in the gardens, parks and forests are protected as natural monuments.