Bürgstadt

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Template:Infobox German Location Bürgstadt is a market community in the Miltenberg district in the Regierungsbezirk of Lower Franconia (Unterfranken) in Bavaria, Germany and the seat of the Verwaltungsgemeinschaft (Administrative Community) of Erftal.

Geography

Location

Bürgstadt lies at the mouth of the river Erf where it empties into the Main and is seamlessly built together with the district seat of Miltenberg lying to the southwest. It lies at the northeast edge of the Odenwald on the boundary with Baden-Württemberg.

History

In 1181, Bürgstadt had its first documentary mention.

In early historical times, the Bürgstadter Berg (mountain) was the site of a fortified settlement (today forest) that was protected by a ringwall. Until the 18th century, Bürgstadt was a tithe count’s seat, but had already lost much of its importance by the late Middle Ages to neighbouring Miltenberg, which had a more strategically favourable location and was protected by a castle. Also, the Roman castrum Miltenberg-Ost lay partly within Bürgstadt’s municipal area.

Politics

Community council

The council is made up of 17 council members, counting the mayor.

10 CSU 3 SPD 4 UWG 17 Total

(as at municipal election held on 2 March 2008)

Coat of arms

The community’s arms might be described thus: On a base vert gules a castle embattled argent with two round side towers likewise embattled and with door and windows open, in chief between the towers a wheel spoked of six of the last.

Bürgstadt passed into Electoral Mainz’s hands quite early on, presumably by the 8th century, and remained a Mainz holding and the seat of a tithe court until the Old Empire came to an end in 1803. Despite the market community’s importance, neither an old seal nor anything else like a coat of arms is known. The first evidence of such a thing came with the Mayor’s Medallion from about 1820 with the composition as it is known today. The wheel – the Wheel of Mainz – and the tinctures argent and gules (silver and red) refer to the former ownership by the Electoral state of Mainz. The castle is a canting charge for the community’s name (Burg – without the umlaut mark – means “castle” in German; Stadt means “town”, although it has never officially been one).

The arms have been borne since the 19th century.

Culture and sightseeing

Museums

The museum in the former Bürgstadt Mittelmühle (“Middle Mill”) divides itself along the main thematic lines of winegrowing in Bürgstadt and sandstone quarrying and processing. Documented here as well are tobacco growing, early and local history and the life and times of the composer Johann Michael Breunig (1699–1755), who was born here. Since 2002, a Roman department has been showing the local early history. The history of ethnic Germans driven out of their lands after the Second World War has a special room dedicated to it. Special exhibitions on current themes in local and club history and on everyday village life before 1960 are presented, changing twice yearly, with the help of the museum’s inventory.

Buildings

Worth seeing are the Martinskapelle, a chapel built about 950, with its mural Bible paintings presented in 40 medallions, the old parish church (built about 1300), the historic Town Hall (built about 1590) and the ruins of the Centgrafenkapelle (“Tithe Counts’ Chapel”) from the 17th century. In May 2000, the Mittelmühle, which had been converted into a civic centre, was opened to the public.

Regular events

About Ascension Day each year, the Winemakers’ Festival is held. Every five years (most recently on 30 January 2005), a Carnival (locally, Fasching) parade is staged with the Altweibermühle (“Old Women’s Mill”; its first documentary mention goes back to 1860) as the highlight. Every year on the first weekend in July, the local football club stages its tournament for the Centgrafen-Cup (“Tithe Counts’ Cup”), its name coming from the community’s history. On the second weekend in July, the street and farm festival is held, at which many local clubs take part.

Culinary specialities

On the Bürgstadter Centgrafenberg (“Tithe Counts’ Mountain”), there is winegrowing for red wine, which for Bürgstadt holds great importance. Mainly Pinot noir and Pinot noir précoce are grown in the vineyards there in bunter soil, out of which very good red wine is made. The community’s best known winegrower is Paul Fürst, who in 2003 became the year’s best winegrower, according to the Gault Millau wine guide. Almost all the community’s winegrowing businesses take it in fortnightly turns to offer up their own wine with various kinds of bread in Häckerwirtschaften.

Since 1990, Bürgstadt has lain on the Fränkischer Rotwein Wanderweg (“Franconian Red Wine Hiking Trail”).

Economy and infrastructure

Winegrowing plays an important rôle in Bürgstadt. With just under 60 ha of vineyards, the community is one of the biggest winegrowing communities on the Lower Main. In 1612, red wine from Bürgstadt had its first historical mention.

Public institutions

Sport and leisure

Bürgstadt has at its disposal a heated swimming pool with a big waterslide and sporting grounds, tennis courts, a tennis hall with squash courts and further sporting grounds. Both ways along the Main valley run expanded cycle paths. Moreover there are many hiking paths at the Main, at the Erf, through the vineyards and in the woods.

Famous people

  • Ernst Heinrichsohn, mayor from 1978 to 1980, sentenced in 1980 in Cologne to six years in prison for having taken part in persecuting Jews in occupied France during the Second World War (see: Vel' d'Hiv Roundup)

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Johann Michael Breunig (Baroque composer)
  • Maria Bachmann (actress, screenplay writer, producer)

Further reading

  • Wolfgang Meister: Die Martinskapelle in Bürgstadt. Zeugnis von Kunstsinn und Glaubenseifer einer Landgemeinde um 1600, Bürgstadt 2004 (ISBN 3-00-015104-4)

References

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External links

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Template:Cities and towns in Miltenberg (district)