||This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the German Wikipedia. (February 2009)|
|• Mayor||Peter Traub (FW)|
|• Total||23.57 km2 (9.10 sq mi)|
|Elevation||496 m (1,627 ft)|
|• Density||330/km2 (850/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
The name "Oberkochen" consists of the two German words "ober"; meaning "above" or "upper" and "Kocher"; the name of the local river. The name indicates, that this settlement lies above the river Kocher or on its upper part, which makes sense, because the river Kocher has its spring right to the south of Oberkochen and runs to the north. Therefor the village next to the north of Oberkochen is Unterkochen; from the German "unter" meaning "lower" or "under" and the name of the river again.
Oberkochen is located in and above the valleys of the rivers Kocher and Langertsbach between the area of Albuch in the west and north and the area of Härtsfeld in the east. The highest point in the area of Oberkochen is the top of the Volkmarsberg mountain (743 m above sea level). Directly south of the city the river Kocher has its origin.
The city consists of two main parts: the downtown area with the city center, Spitztal, Lenzhalde and Brunnenhalde and the Heide area, which lies 100 m above the city on a hill to the northeast.
(all dates after christ)
|1137||first mentioning of the name "Cochon" in a table of goods of the Ellwangen Abbey|
|1147||first mentioning of the name "Kochen" in modern spelling|
|1337||first mentioning of the name "Oberkochen" in the table of goods of the Ellwangen Abbey|
|1343||first parish in Oberkochen|
|1535||a general set of village rules is formulated|
|1551||blast furnace is established on the source of the river Kocher|
|1578||Oberkochen gets a new detailed set of village rules|
|1582||until 1583. Construction and consecrating of the first Protestant church|
|1650||until around 1710. Arrival of Austrian settlers|
|1698||boundary description of the Oberkochen district|
|1725||oil mill on the "Ölweiher" (German for "oil pond")|
|1840||nearly 30 potters (German: "Hafner") are working in Oberkochen|
|1864||opening of the railway line Aalen-Ulm|
|1876||founding of the "Württembergische Holzbohrerfabrik A. Leitz" predecessor of the present-day "Leitz GmbH & Co. KG" in Oberkochen|
|1916||connection to the national water supply|
|1945||allied bombings of Oberkochen during World War II|
|1946||the company Carl Zeiss is relocated in Oberkochen after the partly emigration from Jena|
|1967||new town hall is opened|
|1968||Oberkochen becomes officially a city (June 29)|
|2006||The Carl Zeiss SMT opens a new factory with 2,500 employees in the intercommunal industrial area Oberkochen-Königsbronn|
Schultheiß and mayors of Oberkochen
From 1553 until Feb 25th 1803 Oberkochen had two Schultheißen, one of the katholic Ellwangen and one of the Protestant würtembergian Königsbronn. Since 1933 Oberkochen has a mayor, who wears a livery collar since Oberkochen became a city in 1968. The collar was donated by trade, commerce, industry and liberal professions.
|1803||Schultheiß||Johann Sebastian Gold (Ellwangen) and Kaspar Scheerer (Württemberg)|
|1809||Schultheiß||Kaspar Scheerer (alone)|
|1830||Schultheiß||Sigmnund Jonathan Maier (also surgeon)|
|1849||Schultheiß||Michael Wingert (also master bricklayer)|
|1903||Schultheiß||Franz Anton Bucher|
|1945||mayor||Richard Frank (same person as Schultheiß in 1905)|
|since 1993||mayor||Peter Traub|
During the Thirty Years' War (1618-1648) the population of Oberkochen was reduced from c. 500 to c. 100 inhabitants. It took nearly 200 years to reach a population of 500 again. In the 19th century the population saw a greater rise due to the industrialisation.
The next remarkable growth took place after World War II, when the population quadrupled from 2,000 to 8,000 people in just 20 years. One of the main reasons for this growth was the relocation and expansion of the company Carl Zeiss. In 1968 Oberkochen became officially a city, which is remarkable, because at this time a population of 10,000 people was a condition for towns in Germany to become a city. The reason for the premature change in the status of Oberkochen was the intense growth of the population prior to 1968, which made the mayor Gustav Bosch, as well as the responsible authorities believe, that a population of 10,000 would be reached soon. Therefore the change of the status of Oberkochen from town to city was applied for and finally granted. Despite these expectations and actions the population stalled instead and even saw a slight decrease.
Today there are more commuters working in Oberkochen then working people living there.
Coat of arms
The coat of arms was introduced in 1968 and is based on the one of the "Görig von Kochen" from 1404. He owned several pieces of land in Oberkochen. The colours were chosen without historic meaning.
Oberkochen can be reached by using the Bundesstraße 19 ("B 19"), which runs along the Kocher-Brenz-Valley from north to south. Oberkochen has two junctions to the Bundesstraße, Oberkochen-North ("Oberkochen-Nord") and Oberkochen-South ("Oberkochen-Süd"). The nearest Autobahn is the Bundesautobahn 7 with the Aalen-Oberkochen-junction, which is reached via the B19 and L1084 after a 11 km drive from Oberkochen.
By train Oberkochen is connected through the Brenz Railway, which is used by the Regional-Express of the DB Regio company. The nearest connection to national and international train services is made via the Aalen railroad station, which is 10 km away from Oberkochen and has a direct link to it. The railroad station of Oberkochen has two platforms and is friendly for disabled persons, i.e. people using wheelchairs, through an elevator. It is possible to buy tickets for the train on a ticket machine located on the platforms.
Oberkochen has three municipal and one Roman-Catholic kindergarten. There are two primary schools, the Tiersteinschule and the Dreißentalschule, which also contains a Realschule, Werkrealschule, Hauptschule and Musikschule (music school). There is a Förderschule, the Sonnenbergschule also. The local Gymnasium is the Ernst-Abbe-Gymnasium, named after the scientist Ernst Abbe. Oberkochen has no university and the next university can be found in Aalen.
The local folk high school is located in the building of the city hall. For a wider set of courses there is also a folk high school in Aalen. A municipal library was installed in the old Protestant church.
The St.-Peter-und-Paul-Kirche (German for: St. Peter and Paul Church) is the local Roman-Catholic church and was consecrated October 25, 1900. This church was the replacement for an older church from the Baroque period.
The local Protestant church is the Versöhnungskirche (German for: Reconciliation Church), which was consecrated in 1968. The predecessor of this church became the local library.
After World War II, the allied troops moved parts of the Carl Zeiss Company in Jena to Oberkochen. Today, the headquarters of the Carl Zeiss AG are located in Oberkochen. Another important business is the Leitz company, which is the world-leading manufacturer for wood-processing tools.
Oberkochen is twinned with:
|1893||Karl Fröhner||head forester ("Oberförster")||1844-1898|
|1909||Carl Weiger||head forester ("Oberförster")||1843-1911|
|1968||Dr. Gerhard Kühn||member of the board of the company Carl Zeiss||1902-1990|
|1968||Dr. Heinz Küppenbender||member of the board of the company Carl Zeiss||1901-1989|
|1978||Gustav Bosch||mayor of Oberkochen||1914-1979|
|2001||Dr. Gert Littmann||member of the board of the company Carl Zeiss||1927-|
|2004||Dr. Dieter Brucklacher||entrepreneur||1939-|
|2011||Dietrich Bantel||"Gymnasialprofessor a.D."||1935-|
- Oberkochen has not a single traffic light. It is the only such city in Germany.
- There is a Christmas market in Oberkochen. It is open on a single day in the year.
- The local museum of Oberkochen can be visited on 12 days each year. On the first Sunday of each month.
- "Gemeinden in Deutschland mit Bevölkerung am 31.12.2012 (Einwohnerzahlen auf Grundlage des Zensus 2011)". Statistisches Bundesamt (in German). 12 November 2013.
- Jahresbericht 2013 in Zahlen. In: Bürger und Gemeinde. Amtsblatt der Stadt Oberkochen. 60. Jahrg., Nr. 51/52, 20. Dezember 2013, S. 961. (online)
- Official site (German)