Historical Tour - Full of History and Culture of Past Epochs
The old City of Roth is rich in relics of past epochs and strolling through the historical city will broaden your mind. Modern technology will allow you to go for a virtual reality walk through the heart of our district town and experience a fine choice of the many sights of the city online. Numerous half-timbered houses line the streets and places. Each and every expert will notice the magnificent Riffelmacherhaus at our market place. Others will be found in picturesque lanes you will be led to on our online historical tour.
The tour will, of course, lead you to Ratibor Castle, the landmark of margrave times. Its castle museum harbours inter alia an institution dealing with interesting and eventful aspects of the city’s history.
We hope you will enjoy you virtual tour.
1 Ratibor Castle
The building of the Margraves of Brandenburg-Ansbach is one of the few well preserved estates of the German Early Renaissance. Margrave Georg “the Godfearing” built this impressive hunting castle from 1535 until 1538. Decision for the location was the abundance of game in the surrounding forests. He financed the new building through revenues that he raised in his Silesian principalities Ratibor and Oppeln. Therefore, he called it “Ratibor castle at the Retzet River” (Rednitz River). With the resignation of the last Margrave in 1791 Johann Philip Stieber bought the castle and set up a production of Leonian wires (i.e. fine wires made out of false gold and silver). From 1858 until 1892 the district court was in session in the western building. At the turn of the 19./20th century Wilhelm von Stieber employed renowned artists to redesign the interior of the castle in the German and Italian Late Renaissance style. Among those artists were Ferdinand Wagner, Rudolf von Seitz, Friedrich Wanderer and Conradin Walther: Elaborate stucco in the staircase with marble, artistically designed wood panels in the fireside room, conservatory and dining hall and the magnificent Prunksaal (splendour hall) with ceiling paintings depicting ancient myths and Gobelin paintings with scenes from the Odyssey. In 1942 the castle was donated to the City of Roth. The Museum Castle Ratibor was installed in the 2nd floor. The former royal stables now house of the public library as well as the city archives. The tourist-information is also situated at the eastern side of the castle.
2 Luitpold Monument
For the 70th birthday of regent Prince Luitpold (March 12, 1891), the city bestowed this monument. This was the idea of painter Anton Seitz, and it was supported by Wilhelm von Stieber. It is an artisan craftswork of the local stonemasons Hemmeter and Brunner.
3 Mehl House
Old citizen house, built about the year 1700. Renovated in 1901 and provided with a stucco facade by master craftsman, Fire Chief and councillor Konrad Hofer. Restored from 1981 until 1983 by the Mehl family.
4 City Wall
Remainders of the City Wall that used to be reinforced by towers can be seen at the Kugelbühlsquare, behind the building of the bank “Sparkasse” and the so-called chambers as well as at the Stieberstraße. Three gates led into the old town: south of the bridge across the river Roth the “Lower Gate”, to the east of the Ratibor castle the “Upper Gate” and next to the Seckendorff castle the “New Gate” which was built in 1719. All these gates were demolished during the 19th century because they were obstacles for the traffic.
5 Small Castle of Seckendorff
Built in 1768 by the bailiff Robert von Seckendorff next to the “New Gate” at the new city expansion. Owned in 1797 by the official Heuber. The staircase, the hall and the wing are from the time he lived here. Bought by the city in 1828. From 1856 on a servants hospital. The city’s hospital from 1884 to 1937. Renovated in 1980. Since 1989 seat of the city’s adult education programme.
6 Kugelbühl Place
It came into being due to a medieval expansion of the city. Here you can find small old houses; some of them are restored very well. Remarkable is half timber house number 23 which is from about 1650. House number 44 was the site of the synagogue. Most of the members of the Jewish community that can be traced back to the 16th century settled here before their expulsion and their murder in the 3rd empire – that’s why it was called „Jewish Lane“ earlier.
7 New Town Hall
Former school building, that was rebuilt after the fire of 1878; since 1903 seat of the city administration. Here was the site of a representative building from 1533, whose owner was exempted from all public charges, therefore called “freehouse”. From 1621 until 1625 Margravian “Kipper” coins were minted here (i. e. coins with a small share of silver or copper). Today complemented by a modern extension building.
8 Protestant City Church
Dedicated to “Zu unserer lieben Frau (To Our Lovely Mother)”. Late gothic building from 1511 to 1513 of which the tower with Romanian elements were kept. Modification to a hall church in the Margravian style in 1738 by Margravian master builder Steingruber. After the fire in the tower in 1878 a new tower in the centre aisle of the church was set up. Inside you can find an impressive figure of the Holy Catherine (about 1520) as well as epitaphs and tombstones from the 16. /17th century. Neo-Gothic interior styling.
9 Old Town Hall
Built in 1758/59. At the north side of the Baroque building the gable statue “Justizia” as well as the manorial seal of the rulers, held by two eagles and topped by the Margravial hat. West side: balcony, from which the official proclamations were made. To the south stone with a seal and the Brandenburgi-an eagle dating back to 1533 originating from the earlier building.
Beautiful example of the Art Nouveau. Built in 1904/05, restored from 1987 until 1989. This area once was the location of the large inn “Zum Schwarzen Bären (To The Black Bear)”. It had to make room for a modern hotel building at the end of the 19th century. This hotel “Zur Post” was demolished by a fire in 1899, the site then was sold to the Royal Bavarian Post.
11 Margrave Fountain
Built in 1757 as a gift from the city of Roth for Ruler Carl Wilhelm Friedrich. The Baroque fountain column carries his initials “CWF”, three gargoyles and a woman portrait. Topped by the Brandenburgian eagle as a symbol of power and control.
12 Restaurant "Zur Weintraube"
First mentioned before 1529. Long time tavern with the right to bake. Two story building with a gable organized by mouldings (renaissance) and a round arch gate. In the middle of the 17th century, the court was conveyed in order to build the Traubengasse (the grape lane).
13 Old Law Office
House number 38: site of the office building of the margravial reign (mentioned in 1531). Later house for the city clerk. Todays building dates back to 1724.
Houses 40 - 44: Once seat of the officials. The estate comprised a dwelling house and stables, a grain barn, the official salt stock and a baking oven.
13a An der Freyung
Due to the construction of the Valentin Shopping Mall this idyllic path along the city wall, that offers nice views of the old town, was made up. The foun-tain, that shows an traveling entertainer, is made out of an old beer cooling apparatus from the Valentin brewery that used to be here. The name “Freyung” is pointing out the old imperial asylum in Roth.
One of the most beautiful half-timbered buildings in Franconia. The cellar vault dates back to the late medieval, the decorative superstructure with the little corner towers from the 17th century. Owners were wealthy land owners and beer brewers.
15 Restaurant "Schwarzer Adler"
Probably the site of the “Meierhof” (a mansion) for the bailiff from the Bamberg bishopric at the old housing scheme of Roth, the later “Lower Suburb”. First mentioned as an inn in 1536. Since 1646 under the name “Zum Coronet”, from 1796 on as “Schwarzer Adler (black eagle)” important inn with large stables.
16 Willy-Supf Square
Once the village square, older than the market square. Site of the former “Meierhof” (also see number 15) and “Lower Mill”; former Supf’sche Stanniol factory. Old industrial site next to the River Roth. In front of the Willy-Supf-Square was the St. Nikolaus chapel, which was pulled down in 1534.
17 Städtler Fountain
Designed by Prof. Rössner from Nuremberg, erected by the municipality in 1909 in memory of Sebald Städtler who was born in Roth in 1689. He left his fortune that he had gathered during his term as emperor’s food administrator for the troops during the Turkish wars to the city in order to build an old people’s home for men.
18 Community Centre/Culture Factory
Finished in spring 1992, the House for the Citizens was built up on the base of a fabrication hall of the Leonian factory plant dated from 1906. Foundation walls and parts of the walls were integrated into the new building. The Leonian factory and the house for the citizens are standing on the site of the former “gunpowder mill”. Today the cultural programme offered by the Kulturfabrik (Culture Factory) attracts visitors from far and near.
19 Youth Centre
The former flattening house of the Leonian wire factory (Johann Balthasar Stieber) served as temporary church for the small Catholic parish from 1860 until 1898. Since the modification in 1991 it is the “Jugendhaus” (youth centre) of the city of Roth.
Citizen house dated middle of the 17th century with a picturesque gable. Modified by the margravian official Simon Wechselbaum (in office from 1727 until 1754). Ferdinand Rothbart (1823 -1899), painter and illustrator, was born here. Until about the middle of the 20th century inn of the city brewery, then seat of the public utility company. Without use at the moment.
Citizen house carrying the seal of the Stieber family at the north side. Built in the 15th /16th century, modified in the middle of the 18th century, at that time owned by the founder and owner of the Leonian Wire Factory, Johann Balthasar Stieber (moved to Mühlhof near Nuremberg in 1834). In this house, two famous citizens of Roth were born: Sebald Städtler (also see number 17), son of a blacksmith, later emperor’s food administrator (1689) and Anton Seitz (1829 -1908), academy teacher, genre painter and the first Honorary Citizen of Roth. Later the post office, mayor’s seat, private hospital and a shop building.
Built in 1625 on the cemetery which was laid out earlier in 1534. In the Thirty Years’ War the interior of the cross church was fully destroyed. During the Hundred Years’ War destruction of the interior. Expanded at the end of the 18th century. In 1903 five colourful church windows were added (artist von Zettler, Munich); extensive restoration in 1983 with the addition of a vestry.
B Former Restaurant "Zum Hirschen"
Located at the “Upper Suburb”. The inn (built in the second half of the 16th century) was demolished in 1684 and rebuilt the same year. Restored in 1929 and 1989. Features memorably Art Nouveau interior fittings.
C Catholic Church
Dedicated to “Mariae Aufnahme in den Himmel (Mary is Admitted into Heaven)”. Built in 1898 in Neo-Gothic style. Remodelling and extensions in 1966. Some valuable Gothic side altars (from Rednitzhembach), among them a shrine altar from the 16th century depicting the scene “Empress Helena Finds The Cross”.
D Obere Mühle + Factory Museum
Traced back to the beginning of the 15th century. Besides its use as a mill, it was also a copper forge and wiredrawer’s site. Oldest industrial site of Roth. From 1901 on it was a power station of the Stieber Leonian Wire Factory. It is the beginning of a scenic walk along the river Roth. Next to it in the building Obere Mühle 4 the museum of the Leonian Industry is looking forward to your visit.
A city rally is offered on the basis of our historical tour by the tourist information office of the City of Roth.
The brochure Historical Tour of Roth and on-site research will make it easy for you to find the right solutions.