Historisches Lahnstein

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Town Hall

Town Hall

A Visible Sign

The 30th August 1888 marks an important date in the history of Oberlahnstein. The Town Council meets for one last time in the old Rathaus or town hall. Afterwards, led by a group of musicians, they proceed to the Kirchstrasse. Here the mayor is officially presented with the key to the new town hall and the building is inaugurated. This ceremony demonstrates how delighted the people of Oberlahnstein are with their prestigious new municipal building.

For many years disgruntled voices had been regularly raised in protest about the state of the 500 year-old ‘Old Town Hall’ which was badly in need of restoration and which was branded an “eyesore” and an “off-putting old shack”. Oberlahnstein needed to be made more attractive, not least because of the town’s numerous tourists. The new town hall is a visible sign of renewal. Ten years previously the town had acquired this piece of land where the old rectory still stood. The new town hall is completed in a remarkably short time and is built entirely by craftsmen from Lahnstein. From now on this prominent, neo-renaissance-style building dominates the townscape of Oberlahnstein.

91 years later in 1969 the formerly autonomous municipalities of Niederlahnstein and Oberlahnstein merge to form the Town of Lahnstein. In 1988, to celebrate the centenary of the new town hall, an armorial window bearing the coat of arms of the Town of Lahnstein is installed above the main entrance. The arms of Oberlahnstein are still visible on the balcony.

In addition, the Prussian eagle is displayed on the right-hand gable and the figure of Loreley above the side entrance. The eagle represents the town’s historical affiliation whereas the mythical figure is testimony to its regional identity.

Today the mayor and parts of the administration of the ‘united’ Town of Lahnstein have their offices in this distinctive brick building.