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Culture 2000

European Union




Inauguration of the pathway "Old parishes at the Spessart"

Both the village and parish of Oberbessenbach have been oriented towards Aschaffenburg from their beginnings in the late Middle Ages because of close ties with the Aschaffenburg monastery of St. Peter and Alexander. The importance of Oberbessenbach for the monastery came from its location close to an old trade route, »Poststrasse (Post Road)«, passing the village to the east. St. Ottilia's church is important, as with its construction the first parish of the Bessenbach valley came into existence. Below the church is St. Ottilia's Well (Ottilienbrunnen), where pilgrims used to come for help when suffering from eye diseases. St. Stephen's church (St. Stephanus), right next to it, is an interesting object of art history.

On our way through the cultural landscape around Oberbessenbach you will see the curiously shaped Frau Holle's Rock (Frau-Holle-Stein) and will be made aware of the landscape changes during and after the operation of a former quarry. A high point, deep in the woods, will be the Postmaster's Cross (Posthalterskreuz), once even stolen in the 19th century.

Three organizations, »Archäologisches Spessart-Project«, »Naturpark Bayerischer Spessart« and »Spessartbund«, have joined their forces in the Spessart European Cultural Landscape Project. They share the duties of scientific research on the region, of the preservation of its natural elements as a recreation area for the adjacent Frankfurt agglomeration, the set-up and maintenance of hiking paths as well as the presentation to the public of the Spessart as landscape with an old cultural history. The Spessart European Cultural Landscape Project promotes awareness of the history of the region for both residents and visitors. Beyond the stereotypes of forest, poverty and robbers the Spessart is a landscape shaped by more than 8000 years of human history. In this time people changed the original post-glacial vegetation and repeatedly pushed back the forest for a more profitable use of the land. Much of the eventful history was lost from public memory during the time of poverty between 1750 and 1950. Numerous traces of the use and exploitation of the Spessart landscape have survived, though, serving as guides to the development of this landscape. The history of the Spessart Mts. is not that of a
pristine forest, but that of the making of a cultural landscape. The Spessart European Cultural Landscape Project presents this history by means of publications, exhibits, hiking paths, information folders and via the internet.


One more an inauguration … at Bessenbach

The district governor opening the pathway

We see this - daily

A speech like a prayer

On tour

Professor Busche having a lecture

Another soundscape

Spessart tastescapes with cake

This snake is [nearly] a fake

design: Kai M. Wurm
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