Tuesday, November 6, 2007


photo of Birlenbach countryside

DRACHENBRONN, on behalf if suggestive, is a village in Outre-Forêt, nestled in the foothills of the Vosges moraine between two hills.

The people will tell you that their village takes its name Dragon Siegfried came to be dying in our forests, heal its wounds from the village well, sowing terror among the villagers. Drachenbronn means literally "the fountain of the dragon."

Throughout history, the village suffered many misfortunes and changes of ownership. He finally became the property barons Fleckenstein-Soultz.

. The fate of Drachenbronn will change in 1929: until then, Drachenbronn was best known for its cherries and chestnuts. In 1929 began its immense on the Maginot Line, which will last ten years: the book's main Hochwald, the antitank ditch and a dozen bunkers will be constructed. An encampment is installed on land in the municipality (he will become the Camp)

BIRLENBACH is a charming little village on the outskirts of Northern Vosges; Its name means "The stream along which grow willows," raw material for weaving.

In 1298 we found the first written mention, in common with Drachenbronn, the neighboring village, in the same document. In fact, there are 700 years Birlebach and Trachenburg belonged to the same lord, the sire of RIBEAUPIERRE who gave in fief to the Knights of Than (DAHN).

» Birlenbach, "Swedish village"

Shortly after the death of the last knight of Dahn, Lord de Ribeaupierre Eberhard sold the village in 1612 to Count Palatine John II of Deux-ponts. But in 1613, the younger brother of the latter, Jean Casimir, was sent to the court of Gustavus Adolphus, King of Sweden, to advocate for the German Protestant princes. He won the confidence of the king and the heart of her sister Catharina with whom he married two years later.

In the spring of 1618, Jean Casimir returned to his homeland with his wife, Princess Catharina. I. They decided to buy the village BIRLENBACH and to build a big castle. The laying of the first stone took place on April 12, 1619.

Jean Casimir and Catharina they lived only a short time, from January to June 1621. . Because of the threat of war, they took refuge first in Strasbourg and then return to Sweden. It was there that was born on 8.11.1622, their son Charles-Gustave, future King Charles X "in Sweden.

During the war thirty years, the castle was looted and burned down by armed gangs, and then restored. After serving housing troops at the beginning of the eighteenth century, it became uninhabitable. Despite a restoration project in 1733, it was dismantled to 1753-1755, and its stones were used in the construction of several buildings in the village, including the rectory.

Drachenbronn-Birlenbach im Elsaß

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