A fortress and widow's residence

Kirchheim Palace

Writ of protection from 1688
JOY AND SORROW IN THE SHADOW OF THE PALACE

THE SUBJECTS

The palace was not a blessing for all the citizens of Kirchheim unter Teck. Tedious compulsory labor and high taxes weighed heavily on the subjects. On the other hand, awarding jobs to the town's craftsmen and social outreach also served the good of the people.

Writ of protection for the town and district of Kirchheim unter Teck from 1688. Image: Stadtarchiv Kirchheim

Writ of protection from 1688.

UNDER DUCAL PROTECTION

Dowager Duchess Maria Dorothea Sophia resided in Kirchheim unter Teck in 1688 when French troops were advancing. To protect her and her property, her daughter-in-law, living in Stuttgart, procured a writ of protection from French General de Monclar for the town and district of Kirchheim unter Teck.

Writing desk by a Kirchheim cabinet maker, circa 1730. Image: Stadtmuseum Kirchheim

Writing desk by a Kirchheim cabinet maker.

EVEN DUKES NEED TO EAT AND DRINK

The royal inhabitants of the palace had their own ideas about the necessities of life. Kirchheim craftsmen profited from these ideas. Town bakers, confectioners, apothecaries, cobblers and tailors delivered their goods and services to the palace. Carpenters, masons and glaziers were all hired to perform work on the various structures. Many an artistic furnishing was built by Kirchheim's cabinet makers, such as Johannes Benz and Hans Konrad Wendeisen.

Illustration of a stag in Kirchheim Forest. Image: Stadtarchiv Kirchheim

Stag in Kirchheim Forest.

COMPULSORY LABOR AND PALACE RESIDENTS

Much of the population suffered under the burden of compulsory labor and taxes provided to the palace residents. For example, when Duke Carl Eugen visited Kirchheim with his large retinue, more than 400 guests, plus their servants and horses, had to be provided with food, feed, lodging and a wide variety of services. Even the game was herded into the duke's sights by Kirchheim's farmers—free of charge, of course!

The Paulinenpflege orphanage in Kirchheim unter Teck. Image: Stadtmuseum Kirchheim
Wilhelm's Hospital in Kirchheim unter Teck. Image: Stadtarchiv Kirchheim

The Paulinenpflege orphanage and Wilhelm's Hospital were opened by Dowager Duchess Henriette in the 19th century.

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