St Nicolas Church and town hall
|• Mayor||Ralf Lehmann (Ind.)|
|• Total||131.73 km2 (50.86 sq mi)|
|Elevation||10-158 m (−508 ft)|
|• Density||95/km2 (250/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
|Vehicle registration||MOL, vorher FRW|
The town is situated on the Alte Oder, an old branch of the Oder River at the northwestern rim of the Oderbruch basin and the steep rise of the Barnim Plateau. It is located 15 km (9.3 mi) east of Eberswalde, and 50 km (31 mi) northeast of Berlin, near the border with Poland.
Bad Freienwalde has an Evangelical and a Roman Catholic church as well as manufactures of furniture and machinery. The neighbouring forests and its medicinal springs make it a favorite summer resort of the inhabitants of Berlin. A new tower commands a fine panoramic view over the Oder valley.
The municipal area comprises the villages of Altranft, Altglietzen, Bralitz, Hohensaaten, Hohenwutzen, Neuenhagen and Schiffmühle.
The settlement of Vrienwalde in the Margraviate of Brandenburg was first mentioned in a 1316 deed and appeared as a town in 1364. From 1618, the Freienwalde manor was directly held by the Brandenburg prince-electors (Kurfürsten).
A mineral spring was discovered in 1683. The alchimist Johann Kunckel brought it to the attention of the "Great Elector" Frederick William of Brandenburg, who, gout-ridden, arrived in Freienwalde the next year. Recorded by the physician Bernhardus Albinus in 1685, the Kurfürstenquelle became the foundation of Freienwalde's rise as a spa town. Frederick William's son King Frederick I of Prussia had a first maison de plaisance erected by the architect Andreas Schlüter.
The development was further promoted, when in 1799 the small Neoclassical Freienwalde Castle was built according to plans by David Gilly as a summer residence of Princess Frederika Louisa of Hesse-Darmstadt, the widow of King Frederick William II of Prussia. Its park was redesigned by Peter Joseph Lenné in 1822. The industrialist and politician Walther Rathenau acquired the palace in 1909, it was nationalised after his assassination in 1922. Freienwalde achieved the official status as a spa town (Bad) in 1925.
- Hans Keilson (1909–2011), Dutch psychotherapist, novelist
- Alfred Blaschko (1858–1922), dermatologist
- Volkmar Sigusch (born 1940), sexologist
- Elisabeth Radziwill, beloved of Prince Wilhelm I of Prussia died at Freienwalde on 27 August 1834.
- Edith Andreae (1883–1952) sister of Walter Rathenau.
Bad Freienwalde is twinned with:
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Freienwalde". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press
Media related to Bad Freienwalde at Wikimedia Commons