Museen Burg Altena
One of Germany’s most attractive castles on a hill thrones above the old wire-processing town of Altena. In the 12th century the Counts of Altena-Mark founded their family castle to protect the regional iron industry. Following a chequered history, Burg Altena was "built up again" from 1907 to 1915. Since 1914 the memorial with national significance has been the headquarters of the world's first permanent youth hostel, and since 1915 also the nationally important museum of the County of Mark founded in 1875; with its focus on the Middle Ages and Early Modern era it is the oldest regional-historical collection in Westphalia. It gained a new, contemporary concept in the year 2000. The museum, in the trusteeship of Märkischer Kreis district, documents the history of Markish Sauerland.
Duke John William died in 1609. The County of Mark was passed to Brandenburg via his niece, Anna. In 1618 after the death of her father, the Duchy of Prussia then followed that was decisive for the crowning of the Brandenburger. This is the reason why Burg Altena was held to be the family castle of the maternal line of the Prussian royal dynasty. Initial reconstruction plans under Frederick William IV failed in 1835. In 1843-54 he did however have the castle hill redesigned to become a park by the royal garden director Maximilian Friedrich Weyhe and his son. From 1907 onwards a dispute took place at national level about the "reconstruction" of the castle on the occasion of 300 years of association of the County of Mark to Prussia. Emperor William II settled the dispute to the advantage of the "castle builders" who expanded Burg Altena to become a Prussian monument.
The Sauerland Museum is the regional museum for the Cologne domain of Sauerland, the former Duchy of Westphalia. The old building with historic Landsberger Hof, a former seat of nobility, opens after reconstruction and renovation in the summer of 2018 with a completely redesigned permanent exhibition dedicated to the former Duchy of Westphalia. The new building with three floors for future temporary special exhibitions opens its gates in the summer of 2019. In addition to the exhibitions, the new building will also host various other cultural events.
The Sauerland Museum has extensive collection holdings covering the former Duchy of Westphalia. Because this region was attached to Prussia in 1816 the collection also contains exhibits concerning Prussian history. Notable in this respect are e.g. the life-size portraits of King Frederick William III, King Frederick William IV, Emperor William I and Emperor Frederick III. Also worthy of mention is the model of the classical Neumarkt, and Ludwig Freiherr von Vincke's work chair.
Historisches Museum Bielefeld
The location itself and the building of the Historic Museum already form an association to the theme of Prussia. The museum is situated on the site of the former Ravensberg spinning mill. The factory constructed from 1855 onwards with its numerous ancillary buildings and surrounded by a historic park is today counted as one of the outstanding industrial memorials in North Rhine Westphalia. The impressive "factory castle" opposite the Historic Museum brings together the style of Prussian castles such as Babelsberg with the practical functionality of English spinning factories. This highly historic site was threatened with demolition in the 1970s. Several citizens' initiatives fought, ultimately successfully, for the preservation of the ensemble. In 1994 Bielefeld's Historic Museum was able to be accommodated in several heritage-protected buildings connected by modern intermediate building sections.
Bielefeld was the main town of the County of Ravensberg. Following the demise of the Dukes of Cleves in 1609 it passed to Brandenburg-Prussia. The manufacture and trade of linen made it an important region for commerce. The Prussian rulers ensured quality control of the linen in order to also promote its export, and consequently made Bielefeld a main hub for transshipment activities. In the 18th century the State forced an improvement of bleaching methods with the aim of maintaining international competitive capability. Since the 1830s it also pushed for the overdue industrialisation of the linen trade. In its permanent exhibition the Historic Museum displays original objects from the history of the linen trade such as the impressive table of canvas display (Legge). The garrison, the estates, the Church and administration as well as the effects of the Thirty Years' War on the town are also highlighted.
The Kreismuseum Wewelsburg is the museum of the district of Paderborn in the Wewelsburg. It was inaugurated in 1925 as the homeland museum of the former district of Büren. The Wewelsburg was in possession of the SS between 1934 and 1945 who wanted to set up a meeting centre for their highest-ranking officers. Re-established after World War II as a district museum, it today includes the "Historische Museum des Hochstifts Paderborn" [Historic Museum of the Prince-Bishopric of Paderborn] (history of the Paderborner region until first integration of the former Prince-Bishopric of Paderborn into the Kingdom of Prussia in 1802/03) and the "Erinnerungs- und Gedenkstätte Wewelsburg 1933 – 1945" with the permanent exhibition "Ideologie und Terror der SS".
The new exhibition "A visit to Freiherr vom Stein" is expected to be opened in 2019: in rooms resided in by Stein and decorated with pictures commemorating his eventful life. A day in the early autumn of 1828, the visitor wishes to pay respects to His Excellency the Baron and is led by his butler to meet the state parliament marshal personally…
During the course of the visit he hears much about the retired State Minister and his eventful life and also about the history of the Cappenberg.
The exhibition also features loans from the descendants of the von Stein family, from the large regional history collection of the Landesmuseum Münster and from the Diepenbroick portrait archive relocated there in 1980 (see also here.)
LWL – Freilichtmuseum Detmold
500 years of Westphalian everyday culture
The LWL-Freilichtmuseum Detmold at the foot of Teutoburg Forest is the largest open-air museum in Germany. The museum has around 120 historic buildings on an area of over 90 hectares drawn from all social classes and regions of Westphalia. You can see fully equipped groups of buildings surrounded by historic utilisable areas such as gardens, meadows, fields and pastures. These exemplarily show the agricultural, chronological, social and architecturally historic variations of our region. Groups of buildings for all Westphalian sub-landscapes have been prepared and are currently being established.
With respect to the increasing disappearance particularly of agricultural buildings that characterised Westphalian landscapes across several centuries, the Westphalian Parliament of the Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe (LWL) decided on 22 July 1960 to establish an open-air museum in Detmold. A decision was taken to use the zoo grounds of the former Princes zur Lippe. Building work began in 1966. The open-air museum was inaugurated on 7 July 1971. The first buildings were the Osnabrücker Hof, the Mindener Hof with main building and five ancillary buildings, the Doppelheuerhaus, the Tecklenburger Kotten and the Münsterländer Gräftenhof.
Folkloric collection of objects from everyday and festive culture as well as the cultural and social history of all population groups of the Westphalian sub-regions from the Late Middle Ages to contemporary times.
These also include inventories of the Prussian Province of Westphalia from the 19th century (e.g. objects from Minden, a school building from Thöningsen and other buildings, documents relating to agricultural crop production and livestock breeding);
Landesarchiv NRW Ostwestfalen-Lippe Department
The Abteilung Ostwestfalen-Lippe is the central contact point for historic research concerning the region of East Westphalia-Lippe and for complete Westphalian genealogy.
Its roots originate in the former Lippischen Landesarchiv existing since the Middle Ages. In 1947 the previously independent Province of Lippe was integrated into the State of North Rhine Westphalia. Connected to this was establishment of the administrative district of Detmold resulting from the merging of Lippe with the former Prussian administrative district of Minden. Initially the archive was responsible for the new government, but its authority was expanded in 1955 to all state offices and authorities in the administrative district. In 1957 it became the third state archive in North Rhine Westphalia, following Düsseldorf and Münster.
The state archive was able to relocate to a newly constructed specialist building in 1963 that also enabled correct storage of the archive holdings. The building was then able to accommodate the files of state authorities from the former administrative district of Minden from 1816 onwards that were previously stored by the Münster state archive. The Detmold building became a twin archive in 1964: by being incorporated into the newly established Westfalen-Lippe civil status archive it experienced a significant expansion. Since that time Detmold is also a popular reception point for family researchers.
In terms of time the archives cover almost 800 years of East Westphalia-Lippe history and range from the Middle Ages to our times. They are structured into four main groups:
Province of Lippe
The former Lippe state archive forms the core of today's Abteilung Ostwestfalen-Lippe. The administrative developments of a minor German state are almost completely documented since the end of the 15th century, from the lowest levels to ministerial levels and the judiciary. The oldest document dates from the year 1207 and comes from the records of monasteries dissolved in Lippe in the Reformation. The archive also contains the Lippe parliament archives, the files of the court authorities and Reich Governor for Lippe and Schaumburg-Lippe, the archive of the Westphalian ducal college and the Superior Court of Justice files. With the files of the NSDAP district authorities of Lemgo, Detmold and Lippe, the LAV also has extensive records from the otherwise poorly-documented intermediary authority between district and local group administration.
Government of Minden and Detmold
The Minden archives also contain the files of the Minden Prussian Government as well as all administrative and judiciary authorities situated in this district. Records begin in 1816 and end in 1947. These also partly include files from the district, authority and local community administrations. Documents from national authorities and facilities that continued to exist after 1947 or were newly established form the latest group of documents, the "Government District of Detmold". Also contained are documents from police authorities, the judiciary and health- and social administration as well as files from the national authorities such as the financial and labour administration. Maps and plans supplement these records. The sources are regularly enhanced by accepting records from authorities.
The Abteilung Ostwestfalen-Lippe maintains and fosters its collections in order to supplement the national stocks of the archive. This work includes the bequests of important personalities, pictures of persons, buildings and events, posters and pamphlets. Archives from associations and companies are also accepted that have importance for the region. The private nobility archives in Lippe are also housed by the Abteilung Ostwestfalen-Lippe.
Civil status archive
The civil status archive accommodates the civil-legislative records from throughout Westphalia and Lippe, i.e. from the administrative districts of Arnsberg, Detmold and Münster. These essentially include church register duplicates from 1779 to 1875, the French-legislative civil status register from 1808 to 1814, the Jewish and dissident register from 1808 to 1876 and the civil status auxiliary register (secondary books) since 1874/76.
Stiftung Ruhr Museum
The Ruhr Museum in the former coal washing facility on the Zollverein world heritage site is the regional museum of the Ruhr Area. Its permanent exhibition consists of 6,000 exhibits and documents the complete natural and cultural history of the region, one of the largest areas of urban concentration in Europe – ranging from the formation of coal around 300 million years ago to the current structural transformation in the Ruhr metropolis. The museum complex traces the former progression of coal across three levels. It commences with the myths, phenomena and structures of contemporary times, followed by pre-industrial memory, to end with the sequence of the dramatic process of industrialisation within the current era of the Ruhr metropolis.
The Ruhr Museum houses extensive collections dedicated to geology, archaeology, history and photography primarily founded on the collections of the former Ruhrlandmuseum of the city of Essen. These are also continuously added to and thematically expanded, particularly with regard to regional connections. In addition to its permanent exhibition covering nature, culture and the history of the Ruhr Area, the Ruhr Museum also regularly offers special exhibitions frequently not dedicated to topics related to the Ruhr Area. Part of the permanent exhibition is a "Prussia" room. The events of this era are presented based on two of the most important towns of the Ruhr Area: Wesel and Hamm. Both district authorities base their traditions on Prussian sovereignty. Wesel was the fortification town in the west and Hamm the seat of administration. The "history" section of the exhibition also frequently references the topic of Prussia.
The Ruhr Area consists of a diversity of historic locations of importance in the Prussian epoch. Because the Ruhr Museum focuses on this region, reference is made to many administration buildings, memorials and parks to name only some of the places of commemoration. The Kaiser Wilhelmpark in Altenessen is located near the museum. Memorials to Emperor William I, Otto von Bismarck (Chancellor of the German Empire) and the industrial magnate Alfred Krupp can be found in the town centre. It is unusual that the latter, a bourgeois entrepreneur, was dedicated such a prestigious monument. This memorial initiative is perhaps more understandable if it is considered that the steel magnate and his products was one of the most important businessmen from the point of view of the House of Hohenzollern. Krupp cannons and warships played an important part in the Franco-Prussian War and World War I.
The Gustav-Lübcke-Museum is based on two historical initiatives: the first was the museum association founded in 1886 and the second, the foundation set up by Gustav Lübcke in 1917. In 1993 the collections were moved and accommodated in a new, architecturally attractive building near to the station.
The museum highlights five areas: urban history, handicrafts, modern art, prehistory and early history and Egyptian art. The section covering urban and regional history contains many historic artefacts that are significant for the history of Prussia.
The Gustav-Lübcke-Museum is barrier-free
All exhibition rooms and visitor rooms in the museum are without barriers and are accessible via ramps and lifts for wheelchair users and the physically handicapped. Wheelchairs and prams can also be borrowed for free at the ticket counter. Multimedia guides offered at the ticket counter for all visitors to the museum particularly help the visually impaired when visiting the museum. We would be glad to help in facilitating your museum visit. Please contact us in advance if possible so that we can provide you with ideal support.
Parking space for physically handicapped people (wheelchair parking)
A parking space for the physically handicapped is located in Ferdinand-Poggel-Straße directly adjacent to the museum building. You can access the entrance to the museum without barriers by using the external ramp to the museum building (the side of the museum in Ferdinand-Poggel-Straße). To arrive by car, take Hohe Straße in a westerly direction (one-way road), then turn right into Ferdinand-Poggel-Straße (cul-de-sac).
Museumsschule Hiddenhausen e. V.
The concept of the museum school as a Prussian village school – inaugurated in 2001 and run by an association – is aimed at school classes and groups of adults.
Tours are given voluntarily by teachers. In addition to explanatory information these also include an inspection of the rooms and primarily a genuine lesson in the style of the 19th century.
The museum school does not see itself as a museum collection but is intended to connect up with the head, heart and hands of visitors by actively integrating these into the lessons of former times. All can transport themselves to the years of the turn of the century by writing on slates and doing sums with the help of an old adding machine.
More extensive didactic and methodical material is intended to aid both teachers and pupils in intensifying the content of the lesson. In this way an introduction into the progress of history is communicated, and recognitions can be gained via comparisons to contemporary situations.
The museum school is a Prussian village school built in 1848. It contains no special collection showcases; the setup of the school, the tour and the historic lesson reference preserved written documents from former schoolmasters and Prussian school regulations.
The museum school is a lively place of learning. Visitors can experience the school and life as it was 150 years ago with all their senses.
They sit at old school desks and write with a slate-pencil and slate.
Girls and women wear an apron and the old school rules are explained before the start of the historic lesson.
In the months of winter the iron stove crackles and hisses in the school parlour.
The school with its schoolmaster apartment is authentic because it is possible to experience the former burdens of life; only the kitchen was heated in winter, water had to be fetched from the well in the garden, washing was done by hand and food was home-grown and prepared.
Knowledge from the chronicles and recordings of the schoolmasters is communicated that lived with their families and taught in the school building. Original school timetables and lesson plans are used.
The Stadtmuseum Iserlohn has gained an excellent reputation since its inauguration in 1987. It is part of the Valleys Route along the European Route of Industrial Heritage (ERIH) and is judged to be one of the outstanding sites of industrial heritage in Westphalia (WasserEisenLand). The building housing the Stadtmuseum was constructed around 1720 and was converted in around 1819 to become a Prussian armoury. In May 1849 it was stormed and thus became a central location of the revolutionary rebellion in Iserlohn.
The museum's exhibition is designed as a round tour. Three storeys display town and territorial history that in large parts reflects Protestant Reformist Prussian administration, economic and military affairs.
The "European Museum of the Year" competition distinguished the Stadtmuseum in 1989 for the realisation of this concept.
Ore production and hydropower favoured the pre-industrial success of Iserlohn. Life in the town was characterised by wire production and processing, brass and bronze processing, the establishment of the needle industry as part of Prussian economic policies as well as trading in silk and draperies. Iserlohn merchants sold their products as far away as China.
Iserlohn tobacco boxes are especially renowned. In 1755 Frederick II awarded the copper engraver J.H. Giese a monopoly for the production of tobacco boxes with use of his brass rolling process. Initially decorated with biblical, hunting and society depictions as well as town views, scenes reflecting the fame of Prussia dominate during the time of the Seven Years' War. From the 17th to 19th centuries the history of the town and its industry reflects its allegiance to Prussia (interrupted only between 1806 and 1813).
The main collection focus of the Stadtmuseum Iserlohn is the economic and industrial history of the town and region as well as exhibits reflecting social history.
Many prestigious buildings in Iserlohn were the former commercial and residential houses of successful Iserlohn merchants. These thus testify to the commercially oriented economic policies of Prussia.
The building of the Stadtmuseum itself must primarily be mentioned in this respect, that was taken over in around 1819 by the Prussian financial authorities and converted to become an armoury.
The Von-Scheibler-Haus, constructed in 1773 by the drapery merchant Rupe, today houses the Städtische Galerie.
The historic Maste-Barendorf group of factories founded in the early 19th century for brass processing is now an industrial heritage memorial of national importance.
The "Iron Cross" memorial was erected in 1816 in the Iserlohn town district of Grüne in remembrance of Iserlohn men who fell in the Napoleonic Wars.
The optical telegraph on the Fröndenberg was operated from 1833 to 1849 and then destroyed by rebels in 1849 during the revolutionary unrests. The Stadtmuseum set up a reconstructed telegraph mast at its original location in 1996.
Stiftung Kloster Dalheim [Dalheim Monastery Foundation] LWL-Landesmuseum für Klosterkultur
A medieval convent, an Augustinian monastery, the heyday of Baroque, Prussian state property, an estate, a museum – the history of Kloster Dalheim [Dalheim Monastery] has been eventful and multi-faceted to equal extents. The monastery has accommodated the Kloster Dalheim Foundation since 2007. LWL-Landesmuseum für Klosterkultur. The monastery site with a size of 7.5 hectares offers a representative impression of the size and coherence of a complete monastery complex. Situated on the westerly edge of the Egge mountain range in a side valley of the Altenau, it is surrounded by a natural landscape of meadows and extensive forested areas. The museum invites visitors to discover the world of European monastery culture.
In the permanent exhibition, 11 rooms dedicated to the historic cloister enable visitors to experience how monks lived, prayed and worked within a mediaeval monastery. With the aid of modern display methods the exhibition traces the fascination and everyday existence of monastic life. Around 200 exponents collected over ten centuries are presented, ranging from crockery retrieved from excavations, liturgical utensils and valuable liturgical vestments to alters and panelled paintings, sculptures, architectural sculpture and historic manuscripts. The rooms related to secularisation show how the monastery was dissolved by the Prussians and reorganised to become an agricultural complex. Maps, old machines and constructional modifications are still preserved today and offer insights into the Prussian use of the site.
As part of secularisation, Dalheim Monastery was dissolved in 1803 and organised as a state property until 1954 – primarily under the Prussians over a time period of around 150 years and decisively influenced by Prussian economic policies. As an exemplary operation it was intended to be a role model for the farmers of the environs. The Prussian authorities dispatched civil servants and the military to Dalheim on 7 March 1803 to prevent any losses upon annexation of the monastery. Stables were set up in the church and cloister. From then onwards livestock, straw and corn were housed here. The monastery site at Dalheim continued to be used for agricultural operations until the 1970s. This can still be witnessed for example in the constructional changes carried out during the estate era.
Museen der Stadt Lüdenscheid / Geschichtsmuseum
Continuously alternating exhibitions about the history of Prussia in southern Westphalia, urban and regional history, cultural history, the visual arts and events and social events have transformed the museums into historic-cultural centres in South Westphalia since their inauguration in 1988.
Special collections provide visitors with extensive impressions of the cultural and industrial development of the city of Lüdenscheid and its environs. Outstanding exponents of industrial and technical history are a restored railway train, a steam power generator, airship models and equipment of organised fire protection.
Lüdenscheid was seen in the 19th century as a town of buttons. An impressive button collection informs about the history of the fashion button from the Bronze Age to contemporary times.
A significant collection of historic maps, mainly of the County of Mark, is also owned by the museum.
The Ostpreußische Landesmuseum collects and carries out research about the history, culture and landscapes of the former Province of East Prussia that today belongs to Poland, Russia and Lithuania. It presents and displays the entire history and culture of the region in an entertaining and family-friendly way. Presentations also focus on the everyday life of the population (fishing, agriculture, Trakehner horses) and art (painting, ceramics and amber-working) as well as science (Kant, Copernicus, Herder). A strong accent is placed on communication via museum-educational activities that enable both adults and children special access to the topics. This is currently being restructured and modernised. From August 2018 it will have a new appearance and also a Baltic-German department.
The Duchy of Prussia and subsequent East Prussia form the name-giving ancestral homeland of the Kingdom of Prussia. As the only state museum dedicated to East Prussia, the collection is structured across epochs and topics. It includes an important collection of visual art (painting, graphics and sculptures) including Lovis Corinth, Käthe Kollwitz, painters of the Nidden artists' colony and the Königsberg Academy of Art. Important works of Königsberg Baroque goldsmith's art, amber works of the 17th century up until state amber manufacture of the 20th century and Cadina majolica are focused on by the artisan department. The historic department ranges from the Middle Ages, the Prussian coronation and the conflicts of Prussia with Napoleon to the special collection covering escape, expulsion and integration.
Reduced offers during the reconstruction phase:
"Geheimnisse des Bernsteins/The Secrets of Amber" children's birthday for children from 5 to 12 years old: discover the secrets of amber with a microscope and polish a raw amber stone (duration 2 hours, price € 75 incl. material and entry)
Children's birthday "Edle Ritter und schöne Burgfräuleins/Noble Knights and Beautiful Damsels" for children from 6 to 9 years old: an adventurous trip through time to the Middle Ages including dressing up, acting and making a felt bag + raw amber. Younger children make a knight's coat of arms from clay (duration 2 hours, price € 75 incl. material and entry)
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The LWL-Preußenmuseum Minden has belonged to the family of LWL museums since January 2016. As part of the Preußen-Museum NRW established in 1990 it was, in addition to the Preußenmuseum in Wesel, one of two locations at which the history of Prussia in Westphalia and Rhineland has been documented and displayed since the end of the 1990s. The museum is situated at an authentic site of Prussian history, the classicist defence barracks from 1829. As part of transfer of the museum to the trusteeship of the Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe, reconstruction of the foundation and a fundamental redesign of the exhibition are currently being implemented. After this is completed the museum will reopen with a contemporary new presentation and modified appearance. With establishment of a modern visitor centre at the Kaiser-Wilhelm memorial and the supporting project network "Prussia in Westphalia", the topic of Prussia will simultaneously be increasingly placed into public consciousness, and the LWL-Preußenmuseum Minden will also be given an expanded field of action in the future.
The LWL-Preußenmuseum Minden has extensive collection holdings concerning a range of theme areas for the presentation of Prussian history. The exhibits of the collection contain paintings, graphic art, textiles, porcelain, miscellaneous objects and models as well as original exponents from the early 17th to 20th century.
A focus is placed on the 18th and late 19th century. The holdings are not developed historically but were collected according to topics in the 1990s. The collection strategy was aimed at reflecting all primary aspects of statehood. It includes portraits of the ruling dynasty and objects taken from administration, church, school, military, industry and economy, traffic and commerce.
In addition to its connection to regional Westphalia, the collection holdings also reflect the history of the complete state and its provinces.
The Mindener Museum is located centrally in the attractive "upper old town" of Minden. Six buildings from the 16th century in Weser Renaissance style form the backdrop to one of the most traditional Westphalian museums. The heritage-protected museum row was upgraded in 2012. It offers a range of surprises both on the inside and outside: stucco ornaments, stone reliefs, chimneys, a lifting facility from the 16th century and an original building structure with many traces of former residents make the museum row an important exponent of the future permanent exhibition. The museum team is currently working on a new permanent exhibition dedicated to urban history. The first stages have already been prepared. An introduction to the history of Minden is offered with the interactive town model "Festung Minden im Jahre 1873" [The Minden Fortification in 1873] and the "Schaufenster zur Stadtgeschichte" [Window to Urban History], with 35 objects ranging from a hand axe to a handball trophy. Rare golden guldens and stucco ornaments are displayed in the "Erker Cabinet". Fascinating knowledge about the Weser Renaissance and the region's sandstone is offered in the "Diele 23". The history of the Körber & Freytag lending library, its families and its much-travelled furniture is the focus of the Freytag Room. Further sequences to follow step-by-step.
The history of Minden and Brandenburg-Prussia are closely interconnected. As part of the 1648 Peace of Westphalia the former Prince-Bishopric and the identically-named town pass to Kurbrandenburg. Until the breakup of Prussia in 1947, almost 300 years of Hohenzollern dominance have left deep traces in the urban history, in the current appearance of the town and in the collection of Minden Museum. Impressive collection areas of military and fortification history, everyday life, artefacts of local companies and personalities and the art of renowned artists serve to document the Prussian history of Minden.
The following is elucidated in the collection focal points:
Everyday life (1648 – 1947)
• Trade and commerce
• Military and fortification history
• Artefacts of the Weser Renaissance
• Views of Minden
• Personalities (including artists)
• Historic books and archives
• Photography collection
Museums-Eisenbahn Minden e.V.
The Minden museum railway (MEM) is an association registered in 1977. It offers voluntary historic (steam) railway trips from the locations of Minden and Preußisch Oldendorf. In the Weser town the "Prussian secondary line locomotive" is the symbol of this museum railway; it therefore represents the first epoch in German railway history. At the other location, coaches of Epoch III have been brought together, i.e. 1920s and 1930s construction years that continued to be in service many years later. Because secondary and local railway operations are offered, the coaches are almost all twin axle passenger wagons with open platforms and associated locomotives.
The "Minden Preußenzug" is unique in the Federal Republic of Germany. The steam locomotives were constructed between 1908 and 1912 and are appropriately painted in the Prussian state railway colours of dark green and dark red with decorative lines. The wagons are coloured according to their travelling classes in green (2nd class), brown (3rd class) and grey (4th class). They were extensively refurbished according to original drawings, resulting in MEM receiving recognition from specialists from the heritage protection sector. MEM has three tank engines in its inventory as well as ten passenger and cargo wagons and several freight wagons for the transport of bicycles and coal.
LWL-Institut für westfälische Regionalgeschichte
The LWL-Institut für westfälische Regionalgeschichte is a scientific facility of the Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe. The institute undertakes research into modern regional history with a focus on recent and contemporary history. With its orientation it is also a special facility, being the only one in local sponsorship dedicated to researching the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. In addition to its own scientific activities the institute also supports external work and offers publications, events and various services to historians and the interested public.
The institute makes several options available to the public for finding out about Prussia.
In our internet portal "Westfälische Geschichte" (www.westfaelische-geschichte.lwl.org) we present articles, pictures, maps and books about Prussian history (more detailed information at "Recherche-Datenbanken").
The institute also publishes several books about Prussia available in bookshops and in the library (also see: publications about the topic of Prussia).
Lastly, we also offer an institute library containing more than 60,000 volumes of specific literature about the region of Westphalia and German and European social, cultural and political history. Because the content mainly relates to the 19th and 20th century, it also references the history of the Province of Prussia and the Prussian German Empire with a focus on the NS era. Special literature about the state and society of Prussia is also contained to a lesser extent.
The library's holdings can be researched on the internet.
Landesarchiv NRW Abteilung Westfalen
The history of the Abteilung Westfalen of the NRW State Archive begins in 1829 with its foundation as a "Royal Provincial Archive" for the new Prussian Province of Westphalia. This entity gathered together the archive holdings of the dissolved old territories and the secularised abbeys to protect them from loss.
The Prussian administration implemented in 1815 proved to be extremely durable – after several decades their old files were then archived in the building that in the meantime had gained the title of "Staatsarchiv Münster".
In 1889 the archive relocated from Domplatz to the town peripheries in Bohlweg and a spectacular new building: for the first time in Prussia the separation of administrative building and repository was implemented in the form of two building sections connected by a stairway – this was a major step forward in a time that was continuously exposed to fire risk. As with other Prussian authority buildings from this era, the new archive was highly prestigious and a real "eyecatcher" in the Neo-Renaissance style.
Old Empire to 1802/03:
Deeds, files and maps from the Prussian territories of the County of Mark with Lippstadt and Soest, the principality of Minden, the County of Ravensberg, the town of Herford and the Counties of Tecklenburg and Lingen
Intermediate period 1802-1816:
Files of the Münster and Paderborn hereditary principalities
Prussian authorities from 1816:
Files, maps and plans from the holdings of the executive committee of Münster, Government of Münster, Government of Arnsberg, inventories of the districts to 1945, police, Land Register to 1945, building administration, provincial school college, state schools, traffic, forestry, mining, water management, agriculture regulation, post and railway
Archiv des Vereins für Geschichte und Altertumskunde Westfalens, Abt. Münster e. V. [Archive of the Association of History and Archaeology of Westphalia, department Münster e. V.] (depository)
LWL-Archäologie für Westfalen
From Stone Age megalithic tombs to mediaeval castles and lost fighter aeroplanes from World War II: Westphalia has a wealth of relics from the past. Archaeology is needed to render tangible the traces of our history and to preserve these for subsequent generations.
Discovering, excavating, researching, documenting, protecting, preserving and communicating the latest recognitions in publications, in the archaeological museums of the LWL at Herne, Haltern and Paderborn and as part of multi-faceted events – such are the wide-ranging tasks of the LWL-Archäologie in Westfalen [LWL-Archaeology in Westphalia].
The Prussian fortification at Minden is one of the ground monuments in Westfalen-Lippe. Its preservation and research are therefore included in the range of tasks of the LWL-Archäologie for Westphalia. The latter is also dedicated to the preservation of archaeological findings from the Prussian era near to the Porta Westfalica that, however, now only fragmentarily exist. The LWL-Museum für Archäologie in Herne also has exhibits from this time.
Over 1,200 years of municipal history are displayed across 2,500 square metres in 33 display cabinets. The collection is arranged chronologically from the beginnings of Mimigernaford in around 793/794, the end of the Prince-Bishopric of Münster at the start of the 19th century and the incorporation into Prussia until contemporary times. A variety of municipal and architectural models demonstrate that Münster's history was also always reflected in its topographic development – whether this was the settling of mercantile traders and craftsmen in the area of the Prinzipalmarkt or later establishment of the first industrial companies at the harbour. Each display cabinet is dedicated to a special topic such as the Anabaptist rule, an epoch such as the Prussian era or cultural-historic aspects. e.g. the Send in Münster.
References to Prussian history are also focused on in the exhibition.
The Princely Bishop's castle was constructed from 1767 to 1787.
The Prussians occupied the region in 1802; it then lost its sovereignty in 1803 due to the secularisation. Münster finally became completely Prussian in 1815. Upon foundation of the Prussian Province of Westphalia in 1816, Münster became the location of many civil, judiciary and military authorities. Münster was also an important garrison town as the main town of the province and simultaneously headquarters of the General Command of the VII army corps. In 1903 Emperor William II gave his name to the re-established university. From 1870 to the outbreak of World War I Münster developed to become a city; immigration also made the incorporation of districts necessary in 1875 and 1903. A modern infrastructure was established with a central water provision system and canalisation, gas and electricity works, trams and waterway navigation via the Dortmund-Ems Canal.
Penitentiary, Landsberg curia as headquarters of the Higher Regional Court after 1815, castle as headquarters of the VII (Westphalian) army corps and Governor, Landesarchiv Nordrhein-Westfalen Abteilung Westfalen (Königliches Provinzialarchiv Münster), Botanic Garden, LWL Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kultur (state museum for the Province of Westphalia, Dortmund-Ems Canal, Academy of Art (formerly cavalry barracks)…
Verein für Geschichte und Altertumskunde Westfalens, Abt. Münster e.V.
The association is one of the oldest history associations in Germany and is still highly active today. It was founded in 1825, also on the initiative of the Prussian Governor Vincke, as one of many measures for integrating the historically significantly different and still mainly independent states into the new Province of Westphalia. Nowadays the association supports research into Westphalian history and communicates research results to a wide public. It provides a lecture series, trips and tours, organises the "Day of Westphalian History" once annually, publishes the "Westfalen" and "Westfälische Zeitschrift" magazines and also publishes pupils' work about Westphalian history on the internet. A major project is joint-publishing of the diaries of the first Governor of the Prussian Province of Westphalia Ludwig Freiherr Vincke.
The archive of the association exists as the holdings "Verein für Geschichte und Altertumskunde Westfalens, Abt. Münster e.V. (Depositum)" in the Landesarchiv NRW, Westfalen Department, Bohlweg 2, 48147 Münster.
The association library is housed in the LWL Museum für Kunst und Kultur, Domplatz 10, 48143 Münster. The museum collections of the association are also situated there, integrated in 1908 by the association into the Landesmuseum in Münster founded at that time. In the 19th century the association collected manuscripts, coins, maps and museum objects mainly from the time prior to foundation of the Province of Westphalia in 1815, to save them from loss and with the aim of founding a provincial museum.
Der Westfälische Heimatbund e. V. (WHB) als Dachverband der ehrenamtlichen Heimatpflege in Westfalen kann als Multiplikator und Netzwerkpartner dazu beitragen, Inhalte und Anliegen des Netzwerks „Preußen in Westfalen“ weiter in die Fläche zu transportieren und Kontakte zu lokalen wie regionalen Bezugspunkten und Projekten der Heimatvereine herzustellen.
Der WHB nimmt als Dienstleister für etwa 550 Heimatvereine und rund 700 ehrenamtliche Kreis-, Stadt- und Ortsheimatpfleger in Westfalen Aufgaben der regionalen Heimat- und Kulturpflege wahr. Sein Sitz ist in Münster.
Er vertritt einen Personenkreis von ca. 130.000 heimatverbundenen Menschen in Westfalen. 1915 wurde er für das Gebiet der damaligen Provinz Westfalen gegründet. Heute umfasst sein Tätigkeitsbereich den Landesteil Westfalen im Bundesland Nordrhein-Westfalen.
Auftrag des WHB ist es, aufbauend auf den langen Traditionen landschaftlicher Kulturpflege in Westfalen, die Kultur und Geschichte Westfalens in ihrer Vielfalt zu bewahren, zu erforschen, sichtbar zu machen sowie für Gegenwart und Zukunft zu gestalten.
Der Verband versteht sich als Sprachrohr und Serviceeinrichtung für die Menschen, die sich ehrenamtlich für Kultur, Natur und Heimat in der Region engagieren. Zielsetzung ist es, Bewährtes zu erhalten, Neues zu entwickeln sowie Partizipation und Integration zu ermöglichen.
Die Arbeit des WHB wie auch seiner Mitgliedsvereine ist vielfältig und interdisziplinär. Sie umfasst Themen wie Kulturlandschaftspflege, Umwelt- und Naturschutz, Regional- und Ortsgeschichte, Baukultur und Denkmalpflege, immaterielles Kulturerbe, Niederdeutsche Sprachpflege sowie Volkskunde.
Datei _MG_0007.jpg: Westfalentag 2015 im Theater Münster · Foto/ Albermann/ WHB
Datei mhkbg_fb_MS43833.jpg: 1. NRW-Heimatkongress: Blick in das Foyer in der Halle Münsterland mit den Ständen der Heimatverbände · Foto/ F. Berger/ MHKBG 2018
Datei _30A8509.jpg oder _30A8541.jpg: Blick in die Bibliothek in der WHB-Geschäftsstelle · Foto/ Anastasia Kapluggin
Datei IMGP7624.JPG: Der WHB hat die Befugnis, die Wanderwege fast im gesamten Münsterland zu zeichnen. Ehrenamtliche Wegezeichner überprüfen die Wege regelmäßig, damit diese auch weiterhin gut zu bewandern sind. Blick auf den X 1648 · Foto/ WHB
Oeynhausen optical telegraph station
Station No. 32 – Oeynhausen – Berlin – Coblenz Royal Prussian optical telegraph line
The Oeynhausen telegraph station is station no. 32 along the Berlin – Coblenz optical telegraph line that connected Berlin with the Prussian Rhein regions for communication purposes between 1833 and 1849.
The telegraph line with a length of around 600 km led from Berlin via Magdeburg past Braunschweig to Höxter, Paderborn, Rüthen, Iserlohn, Cologne and from there via Siegburg to Coblenz.
Existing high buildings such as castle towers and churches were used in addition to the newly constructed station houses.
A characteristic feature of a telegraph station was a high mast with three twin arms that could be recognised from afar. 4,096 characters could be displayed in purely arithmetical terms with aid of these so-called indicators. Numbers, letters, syllables, words and complete sentences were communicated such as "why isn't the line working" or "nothing new!"
With "excellent" air, 1.5 to 2 characters per minute were communicated to the next station situated between 7.5 and 15 km away and usually perched on a hill; operation however had to be interrupted in fog or rain. A dispatch of 30 words reached Coblenz from Berlin in 1.5 hours. This was a master performance in terms of communication if it is considered how long a messenger on horseback needed for this distance.
Operation of optical telegraphy was terminated after just 16 years because electromagnetic telegraphy had been invented. The telegraph houses were either sold or torn down.
Station No. 32 Oeynhausen was sold in 1850 at the Nieheim town hall for demolition purposes. In 1978, members of the Oeynhausen homeland association excavated and laid bare the foundation walls of the station. Reconstruction of the station was then commenced with financial support from the Westphalian Department for the Preservation of Historical Monuments in Münster – this was completed in 1984.
The now rebuilt “Telegraphen-Etablissement” Nr. 32 shows the room of the Prussian telegraphers incl. indicator device and historical uniforms, reconstructed in cooperation with LWL-Preußenmuseum Minden.
In the lower tower room an exhibition on optical telegraphy and the history of Prussia in Westphalia is located (currently in revision)
Residenzmuseum Schloß Neuhaus
Das neue Residenzmuseum in Schloß Neuhaus hat im August 2017 seine Pforten geöffnet. Die Besucher dürfen sich auf eine aussagekräftige Ausstellung zur Baugeschichte im einstigen Remter des Schlosses freuen. In der „belle Etage“ sind die von Kurfürst Clemens August neu gestalteten Repräsentationsräume zugänglich. Die preußische Garnisonszeit wird anhand von Gemälden und Einrichtungsgegenständen verdeutlich.
Mit der Säkularisierung des Hochstifts Paderborn verlor das Schloss in Neuhaus seine Funktion als repräsentativer Sitz des Landesherrn. Das Schloss und das gesamte Gelände wurden ab 1820 zu einer Garnison für die 8. Husaren umgebaut mit zahlreichen Neubauten wie Pferdeställe, Reithallen und Mannschaftsunterkünften. In die Fürstenzimmer im Schloss zogen die Offiziere der 8. Husaren und richteten dort ihren Aufenthalts- und Speiseraum ein. Das Offizierskasino im Stil der Neorenaissance war eines der prächtigsten in ganz Preußen. Das Residenzmuseum zeigt die Geschichte des Schlosses und seiner Schlossherren anhand ausgewählter Exponate. Die Räume des ehemaligen Offizierskasinos sind für die Besucher zugänglich. Im Schlossgarten verweisen noch zahlreiche Gebäude auf die Zeit der preußischen Garnison.
Stadtmuseum Paderborn. Modern. Neu. Ungewöhnlich.
Im Herzen der Stadt, nahe des Paderquellgebietes und des Domes, ist ein attraktives und lebendiges Stadtmuseum entstanden. Neben zahlreichen Modellen, Medien- und Hörstationen, die ein vergangenes Stadtbild wieder lebendig werden lassen, ist der „Sammlungsspeicher“, der die Vielfalt der kulturhistorischen Sammlungen der Stadt Paderborn und anderer zeigt, zentraler Ausstellungsraum des Museums. Einzigartig für den Museumsstandort ist der Kreuzgang und das Refektorium des von Bischof Meinwerk gegründeten Abdinghofklosters aus dem Jahr 1015/16. Im „Offenen Foyer“ widmet sich das Stadtmuseum Themen der städtischen Gegenwart und der Zukunft. Hier werden neben Vorträgen, Konzerten und Theateraufführungen aktuelle künstlerische Positionen und Tendenzen in Sonderausstellungen gezeigt. Kulturhistorische Ausstellungen haben hier ebenfalls ihren Platz. Im „Museumslabor“ können Erwachsene, Kinder und Jugendliche zum Forscher der über 1200jährigen Stadtgeschichte werden. Führungen runden das Angebot ab.
Die Stadtgesellschaft und ihre Identität stehen im Mittelpunkt der Ausstellungsangebote des Stadtmuseums. Die Dauerausstellung untersucht die historische Dimension der städtischen Identität, die sich in Bildern, Gebäuden, historischen Sammlungen und Erinnerungen zeigt. Dabei gerät das Museum als Institution des Sammelns in den Blick. Eine Ausstellungseinheit repräsentiert den Regimentsverband der 15er Reiter, eine militärische Erinnerungskultur im Sinne der preußischen bzw. nationalen Identitätsbildung. Die ehemaligen Soldaten des 15er Reiterregiments gründeten den Verband nach dem Ende des Zweiten Weltkriegs und der Auflösung des Kavallerie-Regiments in Neuhaus. Neben dem Gedenken an die verstorbenen Soldaten war es eine aktive Traditionspflege, die der Verband durch den Aufbau der Sammlung beabsichtigte. Gezeigt werden Bierkrüge, Teller, Feldflaschen und Pfeifen, Uniformen, Gedenkfahnen, Postkarten und Fotografien die an Militärzeit der Preußischen Garnison erinnern.
Oberschlesisches Landesmuseum Ratingen
The Silesian identity is closely connected with the fluctuating political associations of its regions. The OSLM communicates this knowledge in Germany. Its activities are enabled by the State of North Rhine Westphalia, the Partner state of the Upper Silesians and partner state of the voivodship of Silesia. The supporter of the museum inaugurated in 1983 is the Haus Oberschlesien foundation, founded in 1970. The permanent exhibition is accommodated in the new building, moved to in 1998. The museum works in a partner-based way as part of a broad European dialogue. As a consequence, a contractual collaboration has been agreed upon since 2010 with more than a dozen Polish partners. This trustworthy working together leads to reciprocal exhibition projects and the lending of authentic exhibits.
Mining cable sheaves from the Upper Silesian coal mine of Knurow hang high next to the museum building. The OSLM displays the common mining tradition in the form of this industrial memorial from the Prussian era. In the museum itself the permanent exhibition showcases Silesia from the Middle Ages to contemporary times. A focus is placed on the history of Prussia over the course of 200 years. The economic development of Prussia brought with it major changes to Upper Silesia. The region was completely transformed, particularly due to industrialisation. As a result, a major part of the museum's own collection originates from this epoch. The collection includes silverwork, Proskau faience, Silesian porcelain and cast iron, weapons, maps and postcards. The history of industry and transport with a focus on Prussia is especially important for Upper Silesia, and for this reason is the subject of a special department in the museum.
The Ruhr Area in close proximity enables tours to the industrial-cultural heritage of the Ruhr Area (with settlements, panoramas, industrial museums, collieries, coking plants etc.) that are summarised in a "Route of Industrial Culture" stretching over 400 km (http://www.route-industriekultur.ruhr/).
Just a few kilometres away from the OSLM is one of the oldest preserved industrial facilities in Germany – the Cromford cotton mill in Ratingen. This was founded in 1783/84 by the entrepreneur and merchant Johann Gottfried Brügelmann from Wuppertal, and is considered to be the first fully mechanical cotton mill to have existed on the European continent. Today it accommodates the LWL-Industriemuseum – Cromford textile factory.
Siegerlandmuseum im Oberen Schloss
The Siegerlandmuseum is located in the most important architectural memorial of the region, a castle complex first recorded in a document in 1259. The stone building, that from 1224 was in the possession of the Archbishop of Cologne for almost 200 years as joint-owner of the town and castle, is located next to the timber-framed construction complex, the Grafenhaus, formerly residence of the House of Nassau. After 1623, when the small state was divided between the sons of John VII, a second sovereign residence was constructed, the Lower Castle as the family home of the Protestant line of the Nassau-Siegen family. The Catholic line of the family resided in the Upper Castle until 1743, after which the complex was used as a place of work for administration officials, an orphanage and from 1905 onwards by successive museums.
The permanent exhibitions of the museum are divided into five departments. Iron production and processing formed the foundations of the regional economy for a period of around 2,500 years. Work below ground is simulated in a visitor's mine. The Royal Prussian Mining School (1815-1854) played a particular role in this respect. Furniture from the 18th and 19th centuries and an urban history department (www.zeitraum-siegen.de) are located on the top floor of the complex. The Flemish Baroque painter Rubens was born in 1577 near to the Upper Castle. The museum presents his work in the form of large-scale paintings and an extensive collection of graphic works. The former Counts of Nassau-Siegen had close connections to the Governors of the Netherlands. In addition to William I of Orange, the "father of the fatherland" of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, John Maurice of Nassau-Siegen also has an important role in the collections. The great nephew of the "Schweiger" held among other posts the position of Dutch Commander of the fortifications on the right banks of the Rhine and Brandenburg Governor in the towns of Cleves, Mark and Ravensburg.
The city archive also manages the exhibition activities of the Heimatmuseum Versmold. Activities focus on municipal history as well as preparation for the 300-year town charter anniversary to take place in 2019. Further tasks include support and further education of the town tour guides.
The document and collection holdings are mainly taken from the 19th century. Politically and economically, the influence of the mercantile family of Delius is essential for development of the location from 1721 onwards. Special attention is paid to evidence of the completely vanished textile trade. National history monuments are documented well, in addition to the Prussian era in the "long" 19th century up to the end of World War I.
The Westpreußische Landesmuseum (WLM) is the central facility for the collection, preservation, research, presentation and communication of the culture and history of the state located on the lower course of the Weichsel that gained the name of Westpreußen from Frederick II in 1773 and that has been Polish national territory since 1945. The museum was founded in 1975 in Münster-Wolbeck, and since 2014 is housed in the former Franciscan monastery at Warendorf.
The museum receives institutional support from the Federal Government (Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media). It is also supported by the Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe, the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the town of Warendorf.
The WLM collects and displays the following:
paintings, goldsmith's work, graphic works, old maps, Cadina majolica, medals, coins and emergency money, furniture, models of important constructions and ships, deeds and other exhibits about the state and economic history of West Prussia; history of the Teutonic Order, the Danzig Room as well as alternating and touring exhibitions.
Furthermore, the WLM also accommodates the Westpreußen-Archiv [West Prussian Archive] with more than 1,000 archived documents from four centuries and a photo archive.
The Westpreußen-Bibliothek [West Prussian Library] with more than 19,000 titles can be accessed via the "Verbundkatalog Östliches Europa" VOE: www.herne.de/voe.
The Westpreußische Landesmuseum is attached to the Kulturreferat für Westpreußen [Department of Arts and Culture of West Prussia].
The Westpreußische Landesmuseum has operated an external facility since 1999 in Poland in cooperation with the regional museum in Krockow/Krokowa in the district of Putzig/Puck near to Gdansk.
The former Preußenmuseum at Wesel is located in the citadel of the former fortification of Wesel. The previous focus of the museum was the Prussian history of Wesel and the Rhineland from 1609 to 1947 in connection with the historical location of the fort. With its new concept as the LVR-Niederrheinmuseum Wesel, the museum's thematic programme has been extended in terms of time and limitation to the time period above no longer applies. The regional focus is now more strongly placed on the Lower Rhine region and the Dutch-German border region.
Various holdings for documentation of Brandenburg-Prussian sovereignty in the Rhine Region.
Paintings and graphic works relating to the Prussian dynasty.
Sack-Sethe family archive, documents, paintings and furniture.
Edged-weapon collection focusing on the 19th and 20th centuries.
Graphic works with portraits of the Prussian history of events.
Portrait painting of Lower Rhine elites approx. 1600-1900.
Collection of literature about the Lower Rhine Jewry.
Lower Rhine graphics of the 16th and 17th centuries (focusing on cartography and event history).
See, find out and experience. The exhibitions of the Brandenburg-Preußen Museum in Zietendorf Wustrau on the Ruppiner See invite visitors to gain fascinating insights into Brandenburg Prussian history.
Unique and surprising exhibits and a portrait gallery of all Electors, Kings and Emperors of the Hohenzollern dynasty narrate the eventful past of Brandenburg and Prussia, the County of Brandenburg, historic Prussia in the Baltic region and today's Poland from the beginning of the 15th until the 20th century.
Annually alternating special exhibitions supplement the main exhibition.
The museum specialises particularly in work with children and young adults from pre-school to school-leaving age. Every fourth visitor is under 18 years of age. The Brandenburg-Preußen Museum – experiencing a museum differently for once and in a lively way to discover fascinating history.
The museum's collections primarily accompany the reign of the Hohenzollern Dynasty from the beginning of the 15th until the 20th century. The museum currently has more than 11,000 exhibits that include handicrafts, coins and medals, paintings, weapons as well as extensive objects concerning everyday culture, science, economics and industrialisation. A wide-ranging toy collection supplements the general collection.
The library has a holding of 8,000 volumes about Brandenburg-Prussian history from the 16th century until contemporary times. Collection holdings also contain the research library of the deceased Frederick biographer Professor Dr. Johannes Kunisch.
A large holding of rarities with works from the 17th and 18th centuries is also held by the library.