The district was created in 1939 as the successor of the Oberamt Rastatt and later the Großkreis Baden. In 1973 it was merged with the majority of the neighboring district Bühl, and some small parts of the district Kehl.
The top-left corner of the coat of arms show a wine ladder, the symbol of the city Rastatt. The grapes in the top-right symbolize the viticulture in the area around Bühl. The red bar on yellow ground in the bottom-right is the symbol of Baden, and the rose in bottom-left is the symbol of the dukes of Eberstein.