Historical Town Hall

The Most-Photographed Attraction of the German Wine Route - The Baroque Town Hall

The Symbol of Deidesheim

Deidesheim’s unique symbol is most certainly its Baroque town hall. Most parts of the present building date back to around 1532 and the foundations are even older. Originally, the structure was a Romanesque market hall, but when the community required more space, a second floor was added to the building, which was also accessible from the church. After large parts of the hall were destroyed in the great fire of 1689, it was rebuilt in the early 18th century to revive its splendor. On this occasion, a northern side building was also added to the structure.

The town hall is one of the most beautiful and famous buildings on the German Wine Route. The large, two-sided flight of steps beneath the canopy, which was built in 1724, is particularly amazing. The magnificent council hall on the upper floor with its colorful glass paintings offers an insight into town history.

As the largest part of the population was subject to serfdom before and after the year 1689, it can be assumed that the town hall chamber was never decorated with precious woods, plastically carved figures, valuable pewter or similar extravagancies. Until 1911, the windows and the inner furnishings of the council hall were characterized by sheer shabbiness. The situation only changed when wealthy donors decided to take action. The donation of Reichsrat Franz Buhl to the town included 12 high-backed Renaissance council chairs with a carved coat of arms made of Austria-Castile-Burgundy, 3 plastically carved tables and 12 smaller chairs. Later, he also added 2 windows with coats of arms, which were designed in the style of the Renaissance together with 6 windows donated by Dr. Bassermann-Jordan. Plans to include a wooden ceiling and wall paneling were dropped because the room would have been too overpowering. Instead, a paneling was only applied to the northern wall. On top of this wall, there is a painting of the German king Wenzel (gov. 1378 – 1400), who granted Deidesheim its town charter in 1395. Two portraits of former sovereigns, namely the cardinals and prince bishops of Speyer, Count Schönborn (1719-1743) and the Count of Hutten (1743-1770) flank him. The tiled stove, which can be fired from the outside, and the 5 precious crystal lights were donated by Joseph Biffar, a factory owner from Deidesheim. In the glass cabinets you can see antiques from Deidesheim and the surrounding area as well as a number of purchased items that were also donated. However, the forest diagram of 1772 on the western wall and both of the archive-chests on the eastern wall, have been property of the Town of Deidesheim ever since.

 

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