Friday, December 17, 2010

Family History- Ansbach

WARNING: This post has a lot of pictures.

One of the things I was most excited to do while I was in Germany was to visit the city of Ansbach. There really is not much there that would make it a huge draw for tourists in general. Like all of the places we were able to visit while in Bavaria, it was beautiful. The old buildings, the cobble stone streets, the shops, etc. were all worth seeing on their own. But that's not why I wanted to go there.

You see, my heritage through my paternal grandmother is German. Some genealogy was done many years ago on the family and that history has been published on line HERE. In reading this, I discovered that the oldest traceable ancestor of that branch of my family was born in Ansbach some time in the year 1680.

When you reach the center of the city, this is what greets you. I have no idea what this building is called. When you walk through the archway it's easy to forget that the hustle and bustle of everyday life is happening in the rest of the city.

Edit: One of the landmarks of the city of Ansbach is the Herrieder goal. The massive baroque gate was built between 1750/1751 by the court architect Johann David Gruber on the foundation stone of a previous building.

This Gothic foundation is still visible on the ground floor. With the four flanking town houses on the promenade side is the gate of a Herrieder the most important Baroque building ensembles of Ansbach.

Thank you to commenter RenateS. for finding this information and translating it into English for me!

Right in front of the above building was this fountain. We saw several fountains while we were in Germany, but since it was starting to get colder, many of them weren't running anymore. It was nice to see this one still flowing.


Some of the alleyways were so narrow that it was easy to see why so few cars in this part of the city. In some places the buildings were literally only a couple inches apart. I suppose that is what happens when a city is built and maintained over so many hundreds of years.

This is nothing more than a manhole cover, but I thought it was interesting set in the cobblestone like this with the city crest on it.

The various crests on the building here show the history of the city. I can't remember what they all mean, but it has to do with what country it actually belonged to during the dates listed below each crest. Apparently it traded back and forth quite a bit through the years.

I think this was St. John's Church, which is a Lutheran church. I have to admit I'm not entirely sure though. I didn't really take notes on most of what we saw here. I was too busy marveling that I was possibly walking down the same streets my ancestors did over 300 years ago.

You can see how the buildings connect to each other yet are very distinct at the same time. It was very easy to just enjoy the beauty around us and forget about time.

Something about this reminded me of my Megan. Maybe the happy face that's just slightly tilted down as if she's a little shy. I'd love to replicate her clothes into a costume for Halloween next year. You know, in spare time. (HAHA!)

Again, I do not remember the name of this building at all. I do remember that it was inspired by the Palace of Versailles. It was so long I couldn't get the whole thing in one picture, but it was just more of the same going out several more feet in each direction.

Right behind me as I was taking the picture of the building above were these fountains. If you look real hard, you can see one more further back. I wish that the pictures could really capture the beauty there. Like so many other places we saw there it was simply breathtaking.

We saw this sculpture as we were walking back toward the parking garage. Even though it's a very modern sculpture I loved it. Something about it being a horse seems to tie together now with the past.

There was really something sort of surreal about being in this city for me. Even now thinking about it makes me long to know more about my family history. Most of all, I wish I could share these pictures with my Dad.

4 comments:

Sunny said...

The architecture is breathtaking! They don't make them like they used to.... Really nice photos thanks for sharing!

RenateS. said...

Hi there. I am Angie's mom. I think I have found the name of the unidentified photo. It's the Herrieder Tor, Herrieder Gate, Ansbach, Bavaria, Germany, Europe.
This was one of the gates leading into town, now known most likely as "Altstadt" or "Old Town."

RenateS. said...

By the way I put Herrieder Tor into Google and found this information, I translated it for you. One of the landmarks of the city of Ansbach is the Herrieder goal. The massive baroque gate was built between 1750/1751 by the court architect Johann David Gruber on the foundation stone of a previous building.

This Gothic foundation is still visible on the ground floor. With the four flanking town houses on the promenade side is the gate of a Herrieder the most important Baroque building ensembles of Ansbach.
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Chicken Momma said...

Oh thank you! I'm going to add that information to the post so everyone can see it.

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