Battenberg (Eder)

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Battenberg
Battenberg Castle
Battenberg Castle
Coat of arms of Battenberg
Coat of arms
Battenberg is located in Germany
Battenberg
Battenberg
Coordinates: 51°01′N 08°39′E / 51.017°N 8.650°E / 51.017; 8.650Coordinates: 51°01′N 08°39′E / 51.017°N 8.650°E / 51.017; 8.650
Country Germany
State Hesse
Admin. region Kassel
District Waldeck-Frankenberg
Subdivisions 4 Ortsteile
Government
 • Mayor Heinfried Horsel (Ind.)
Area
 • Total 64.73 km2 (24.99 sq mi)
Elevation 340 m (1,120 ft)
Population (2012-12-31)[1]
 • Total 5,406
 • Density 84/km2 (220/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes 35088
Dialling codes 06452
Vehicle registration KB
Website www.battenberg-eder.de

Battenberg (Eder) is a small town in the Waldeck-Frankenberg district of Hesse, Germany. The town is noted for giving its name to the Battenberg family, a morganatic branch of the ruling House of Hesse-Darmstadt, and through it, the name Mountbatten used by members of the British royal family, a literal translation of Battenberg.

Geography[edit]

Location[edit]

The centre of Battenberg lies in the Ederbergland, or Eder Highland, to which the Burgwald abutting the town to the east also belongs, on the southern edge of the Sauerland and the Rothaargebirge. Lying between 320 and 650 m above sea level, the town is also crossed by the river Eder.

Neighbouring communities[edit]

Battenberg borders in the north on the community of Bromskirchen, in the northeast on the community of Allendorf, in the southeast on the community of Burgwald (all three in Waldeck-Frankenberg), in the south on the community of Münchhausen am Christenberg (Marburg-Biedenkopf), and in the west on the towns of Hatzfeld (Waldeck-Frankenberg) and Bad Berleburg (Siegen-Wittgenstein in North Rhine-Westphalia).

Constituent communities[edit]

Battenberg includes the following centres:

  • Berghofen
  • Dodenau
  • Frohnhausen
  • Laisa

History[edit]

In 778 fighting took place near Laisa and Battenfeld as part of Charlemagne's Saxon Wars. A branch of the Wittgenstein noble family began calling themselves the "Counts of Battenberg" in 1214 - compare Sayn-Wittgenstein. In 1232, Battenberg had its first documentary mention, and two years later it was granted town rights. The early-Gothic church dates from 1249. In 1297, the town's ownership was transferred to the Archbishops of Mainz. In 1464, the Amt of Battenberg passed to Hesse. In 1932, Battenberg became part of the Frankenberg/Eder district. As part of municipal reform in 1974, the districts of Frankenberg (including Battenberg) and Waldeck united to form the district of Waldeck-Frankenberg.

The dynasty of the counts of Battenberg ceased to exist in 1314, their castle was demolished throughout the following centuries. When Prince Alexander von Hessen-Darmstadt, the brother of the grand duke of Hesse, married Julia von Hauke, the orphaned daughter of the former Deputy Minister of War[2] of Congress Poland, their liaison was not considered befitting of his rank. Therefore her brother-in-law made her countess of Battenberg in 1851 and princess of Battenberg in 1858. With her husband, who agreed to carry the same title and name, she lived near Seeheim-Jugenheim at "Schloss Heiligenberg", a re-modelled manor. Her sons Ludwig Alexander and Heinrich Moritz both served the British empire, their families anglicized their name to Mountbatten (Berg means "mountain, hill" in German) in 1917.

Population development[edit]

31 December 1988  : 5,099 inhabitants
31 December 1991  : 5,602 inhabitants
31 December 1995  : 5,693 inhabitants
31 December 2000  : 5,752 inhabitants
31 December 2004  : 5,701 inhabitants

Politics[edit]

Town council[edit]

Municipal elections held on 26 March 2006 apportioned the town council's 31 seats thus:

Party name Amount of seats
CDU 8 seats
SPD 7 seats
Bürgerliste Stadt Battenberg 5 seats
Bürgerliste der Stadtteile Laisa, Frohnhausen und Berghofen 5 seats
Bürgerliste Dodenau 4 seats
FDP 2 seats

Note: Bürgerlisten are "citizens' lists", not actual political parties.

Coat of arms[edit]

Battenberg's civic coat of arms might heraldically be described thus: Per pale sable and argent.

The tinctures come from the arms borne by the town's old overlords, the Counts of Battenberg(a branch of the Counts of Wittgenstein). Battenberg's arms have their roots in the 13th century, putting them among Hesse's oldest municipal coats of arms.

Various other charges have appeared in the arms over the centuries, however. Sometimes it was a tower, the Count of Battenberg and the Archbishop of Mainz, the Archbishop by himself, or the Wheel of Mainz. One version even showed the same simple composition seen here, but with gules (red) instead of sable (black). This would have made the arms identical to those currently borne by Buchloe in Bavaria.[1]

Town partnerships[edit]

Adoption[edit]

  • In 1954, Battenberg "adopted" Sudeten Germans who had been driven out of the community of Obergeorgenthal (Horní Jiřetín) in the Brüx district.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Die Bevölkerung der hessischen Gemeinden". Hessisches Statistisches Landesamt (in German). July 2013. 
  2. ^ Danielewicz, Jerzy (1954). Generał Ignacy Pradzyński, 1792-1850 [Generał Ignacy Pradzyński, 1792-1850] (in Polish). Warsaw: Ministerstwo Obrony Narodowej. p. 34. Retrieved 21 March 2010. "Zastępca ministra wojny gen. Maurycy hr. Hauke[...] [Translation: The Deputy Minister of War, General Count Maurice Hauke..." 

External links[edit]