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Fulda River Bike Path

The Fulda Valley bicycle tour is 3 to 4-day ride 132-mile (213 km) ride through pastoral and historical Germany. The mostly downhill ride follows the Fulda River Valley from Gersfeld, close to its source, to Hann. Münden.

Map of Fulda Bike RouteTour Overview: This is June 2000. The tour starts in the Rhön, a mountainous region just north of the Bavarian border and ends in the beautiful city of Hann. Münden at the end of the Fulda where it and the Werra flow together to form the Weser River. If you would like to make this tour a longer tour, simply combine the Fulda and the Weser River together. These two tours overlap from Kassel to Hann. Münden.

Gersfeld is in the region called the Rhön. The Fulda flows from there, between the regions Rhön and Vogelsberg; then into Waldhessen and then into Kurhessisches Bergland. There are only four hills to climb on this ride. The steepest of which is a 170-foot hill at mile 40 on the third day. Actually, that hill can be avoided if you so choose. With these minor exceptions, the ride has only gentle, rolling hills that are easy on the knees. Although few Americans have heard of this area or this ride, it is popular with German vacationers and the bike path gets a lot of use. The elevation difference is minor so as many people ride up-river as ride down-river.

Stops: The most interesting stops for sightseeing and history are Fulda, Schlitz, Bad Hersfeld, Rotenburg an der Fulda, Melsungen, Kassel and Hann. Münden.

path signPath signs including R-1Signage: The route is well signed. You will find eight-inch square signs like this all along the way.

Overnight Accommodations: Overnight accommodations on this tour can be a bit scarce but we had no trouble because of our use of the guidebook and map mentioned below. As a choice, we like Zimmer (advertised as Zimmer Frei) but there are also Gasthäuser (Guest Houses), Pensionen (pensions or bed and breakfasts), Jugendherbergen (Youth Hostels), and hotels. For a complete discussion of the different types of accommodations and tips on reservations, see my Overnight Accommodations page.

In the case of Kassel, use and click on “Unterkünfte,” then “Auflistung aller Hotelbetriebe in Kassel” for a list of accommodations in the city itself. You can even book online if you are adept at the German language.

It is possible to book accommodations in advance for Hann. Münden by using this link: and then click on "English" if your German is a little rusty like mine.

Fulda GuidebookMaps and Guidebooks: Fulda-Radweg R-1, published by BVA Bielefelder Verlagsanstalt, scale 1:50,000. There are other maps such as BDR’s Deutsche Rad-Tourenkarte, scale 1:100,000, numbers 21 and 28. The BDR maps are good but the scale is too small for me and they do not give as much information about the towns that your particular bike route is traversing. They do give useful information about the area in general and some of the towns on the map. The BDR maps also include helpful information about biking in general. Through the city of Kassel, we use Fahrradroutenkarte Region Kassel, scale 1:30,000 published by Stadt Kassel Vermessungsamt. One can find a copy of this map at most bike shops in the region. Additionally, bikeline Radtourenbuch Fulda Radweg von Gersfeld nach Hann. Münden is also a good choice.bikeline GuidebookBVA Guidebook

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Day 1: Gersfeld to Fulda

Day Overview: This day’s ride is 20 miles (32 km). It is a bit shorter than normal because we take all morning taking the train to Gersfeld. The bicycle ride is slightly downhill but today the path is mostly gravel with few stretches of asphalt. There are no hills over 40 feet high to climb. That means your knees can get used to the exercise they will get over the next few days. It rained during our train ride but as we depart the train in Gersfeld, it’s just cloudy and cool. Good biking weather. The train from Fulda to Gersfeld is a brand new diesel model with a smooth and quiet ride. We are joined by a group of about 10 children ranging in age from 5 to 12 with several of their parents in tow (probably to pay for the snacks and take care of the bikes). They are biking from Gersfeld to Fulda today too. They are a noisy lot; full of excitement for the adventure ahead. Given the young age of some of the children, one can appreciate the ease and relative safety of the upcoming terrain.

Gersfeld Bahnhof and MaxaMile 0 (0 km): Gersfeld Bahnhof. Ride east, you will see the R-1 sign in about 100 yards. Take the bike path and you are on your way.

Mile 2.6 (4.2 km): Fish Hatchery. We stop at the Imbiss kiosk here for lunch. They have bathrooms too, a blessing because there were none on the train from Fulda.

Mile 14.2 (22.9 km): Enter Löschenrode. There is a hard to see right turn as you come up into the village just in front of the Alte Brauerei (Old Brewery). Just down the street is a bicycle repair and rental shop.

Fulda guardhouseFulda DomFulda Statue of BonafaceMile 19.2 (30.9 km): Cross the River Fulda and enter the City of Fulda. The city, like many others, formed around a monastery founded originally in 744 by a monk named Sturmius, a contemporary of another monk named St. Bonifatius (St. Boniface) who is buried (encrypted) in the Dom (Cathedral) here. As an aside, St. Boniface was famous and influential in Germany. He traveled over much of central Germany and Holland establishing churches and monasteries in many places. He was martyred in 752 and later sainted by the Catholic Church. As another aside, Catholics used to like to chop their saints up and move the bits and pieces around to different churches. For example, parts of poor old St. Boniface can be found in Louvain, Mechlin, Prague, Bruges, and Erfurt. A considerable portion of an arm is at Eichfeld. But the rest of his body is here at Fulda.

To understand why Fulda is historically important one must appreciate the importance of religion in both trade and government. St. Boniface had the power of the Roman pope behind him. He became an Archbishop. The pope also gave him the military support of King Charles Martel (a.k.a., Charlemagne – the first Holy Roman Emperor), whose kingdom then extended from Friesland in Holland and the NW corner of Germany to the current French-Spanish border. Since Fulda was St. Boniface's seat of power for a time - as was Mainz, Fulda was the equivalent of any modern capital city, such as Berlin, Tokyo, New York; get the picture?

Fulda StadtschlossToday, Fulda is a cultural center and a crossing point for business traffic and bicycle traffic alike. As you pass through, be sure to check out the Dom and particularly the garden around the Stadtschloss. There are two other churches and a museum that may be worth your while. If you like fire-fighting equipment, you ride past the German Fire Fighting Museum or Deutsches Feuerwehr Museum.

The Dom is an outstanding example of Baroque architecture. Built in the ninth-century it was the center of religious influence for centuries.

Mile 19.7 (31.7 km): We end the short half-day at Gasthof Drei Linden. To get here, turn left off the path just past Hotel Brauhaus Wiesenmühle (or just past the second “Barockviertel” sign) and ride the half-mile back over the river and under the main road into Neuenberg.

How we got to Gasthof Drie Linden is interesting. After checking out the sights to be seen in Fulda and having our afternoon coffee, we found our way back to R-1 and continued out of town. Our preference is to stay in the smaller villages rather than downtown in the hotel district. We find the prices cheaper and the experience richer. This time, we rode two miles to Gaststätte Fuldatal only to find that it is only a restaurant and has no rooms. We should have known that by the name “Gaststätte,” because these places are normally just restaurants. The owner sent us back to Gasthof Martin, which we had passed on the way. As we neared Gasthof Martin, we were checking our map and a motorist stopped to help us (as frequently happens in Germany). The Good Samaritan recommended we continue back toward the center of Fulda and stay at Gasthof Drei Linden. The owners of Drei Linden are pleasant and accommodating. They speak English and enjoy the opportunity to practice their language skills. The food is reasonably priced and well prepared. The restaurant itself is stereotypically German, complete with the mandatory display of Biersteine and Krüge (pots) as well as a few antique plates and a few deer horns to prove the hunting skills of some of the current owner's ancestors or customers. The owner, Stefan Henning, runs the Gasthof and the butcher shop next door. Herr Henning, his wife, and sons work day and night to make their customers happy. It seems to be working. Their website is and you can e-mail them at

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Day 2: Fulda to Bebra

Day Overview: Today’s ride will cover 46 miles (72 km) and is flat except for one 90-foot hill at mile 21 (34 km). There are three stretches of gravel totaling about 8 miles. The most interesting places are Fulda, where you start, Schlitz, and Bad Hersfeld.

Mile 0 (0 km): Gasthof Drei Linden.

Mile 0.5 (0.8 km): Radweg (Bike Route) R-1. Turn left, or North. It is raining hard today and we take shelter under the first little bridge until the bulk of the storm passes.

Mile 14 (22.5 km): The crossroad to Schlitz. We ride into this village because the guidebook speaks highly of it. We are not disappointed. On the short path into Schlitz, it started raining again. I do not mind the rain – a day biking in the rain beats two weeks working in an air-conditioned office. As we stop to don our raincoats, an octogenarian rides up on a bike of similar age and commences to tell us that we should take all our clothes off and let the blessed rain soak into our skin. (In my case, it would not be a pretty sight due to too much skin.) I take his advice with a grain of salt – I smell alcohol on his breath. No doubt, he has been at the Schnapps before lunch already, maybe even a few too many. In any event, he is wearing clothes so he isn’t taking his own advice. Thankfully! We bid him a good day and hurriedly ride off with our raincoats on.

Schlitz TowerSchlitz HouseMile 15.8 (25.4 km): Schlitz, perhaps the source of the name of the American Beer (or at least the source of Joseph Schlitz’s name), is a pretty little town with a Middle Age town with a wall and four towers. One of the towers resembles a candle when it is lit up for Christmas. The Guinness Book of Records calls this tower the largest candle in the world. (I was less than impressed with this fact.)

The city was first established 1,200 years ago (812CE) when St. Boniface consecrated a massive stone basilica here. Schlitz was named after the short river that flows through it, which in some early form of early German meant sliding water. The 1,200-year-old church in Schlitz was Catholic until 1546 when the Reformation reached the town. As you may know, much of South Germany is Catholic today and much of North Germany is Protestant. The territories of the two faction’s overlap Central Germany. Here one village may be Catholic and the next, half a mile away may be Protestant. Can you imagine the bad feelings that must have been present for hundreds of years between the villages over their respective religions? During the Thirty-Years War (1618 to 1648), these bad feelings led to much bloodshed and carnage.

Mile 23.0 (37.0 km): Ride past Unter Schwartz where you will find at least one Fremdenzimmer or overnight accommodation. From Unter Schwartz, climb a 90-foot hill to Richthof. As we climb this hill, we meet a family group of bikers whom we have seen earlier on the trail coming down the hill towards us. As the first one flies past me, she yells, “This is the wrong way.” But by the time I check the map and communicate to the group that it is too the right way, only the last one gets the word. She stops to confirm that I know what I am saying but by the time I convince her, the rest of the family, including three children, are back at the bottom. Now they will have to climb it all over again. Poor kids, they are probably already tired.

There is a Tierpark or a kind of a zoo at the top of the hill but we do not stop because it doesn’t look like much from the road.

Mile 24.2 (38.9 km): After riding under Autobahn A7 and into Solms you will find another overnight accommodation, this one is called a Gaststätte. Remembering our experience last night one would think that normally Gaststätten are restaurants only; but this one has an icon of a bed on the sign indicating a guest room. Go figure.

Mile 33.9 (54.6 km): Wasserschloss Eichhof is here but it is now an agricultural research and teaching facility and not something you can visit. Wasserschloss translates to “water palace” but they are seldom used as palaces nowadays.

Insite guides germanyBad Hersfeld RathausMile 35.0 (56.3 km): We enter Bad Hersfeld in search of a good Konditorei for a coffee break. Wonder of wonders, we have success. Bad Hersfeld is well known for its annual theater festival in the Stiftsruine. A Stiftsruine is a ruin of an old church hospital and the most extensive Romanesque church ruins north of the Alps, according to the Insight Guide, Germany.

Mile 36.5 (58.7 km): Back on the trail at Bad Hersfeld, we head in the direction of Bebra. This is a bike path next to a heavily traveled Landstrasse or primary road. With all the exhaust and noise, it is not pleasant but still better than actually sharing the road.

Mile 39.4 (63.4 km): In Friedlos we turn right and cross the Landstrasse. This may seem like a mistake because we are following R-15 signs instead of R-1 but riding into the fields is a pleasant change and the real R-1 ends up joining us in about a mile. There are overnight accommodations here but we push on because Friedlos does not look like nice quiet little town, more like a noisy, industrial, spread out along the Landstrasse type of town.

Mile 41.6 (66.9 km): After fixing a flat tire (due to a broken beer bottle on the path) we enter Mecklar and enjoy a nice dinner at Gaststätte Zum Weissen Rössl. These nice people are completely booked or we would have stayed the night. They did help me with my bike (my old pump cannot put much pressure in the tire so they allow me to use their compressor) and they call ahead to the next Gasthaus and reserve a room for us there.

Mile 46.1 (74.2 km): Enter Breitenbach and turn left off the trail for a block into Gasthof Breitenbacher Hof. We spend the night here and owner Harald Döttger proudly shows us his team of horses and other farm animals. The rooms are comfortable and quiet; just what we search for.

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Day 3: Bebra to Kassel and on to Hann. Münden

Day Overview: Today’s ride is 66.4 miles (106 km). Admittedly, this is a long ride. We have our home base in Kassel, so we will stop there for the night. However, if that were not the case, as it probably isn’t in your case, you may be well advised to find lodging in Guxhagen, Kassel or plan to overnight in Hann. Münden. Unfortunately, there are few overnight accommodations between Guxhagen and Kassel the hotels are likely to be more expensive than in the outlying villages. If you go the distance, Hann. Münden is quaint, picturesque and has many accommodations.

There are a couple of hills at about mile 17 and 40. Most of the path is paved but much of it is on lightly traveled roads.

Mile 0 (0 km): We start the day on the trail in front of Breitenbacher Hof and head toward the Fulda River, turning left, on the R-1 bike path just as we get to the river.

Rotenburg o.d. Fulda Rotenburg o.d. FuldaRotenburg o.d. FuldaRotenburg o.d. FuldaRotenburg o.d. FuldaRotenburg o.d. FuldaRotenburg o.d. FuldaMile 5.0 (8.0 km): We are riding into Rotenburg an der Fulda, a picturesque Middle Age half-timbered city. The Altstadt (on the left bank) is a perfect stopping place for something to eat or drink. The Pfarrkirche (parish church) St. Jacob here was first mentioned on historical documents in 1248. The main part of the church is from the thirteenth-century but the altar is actually from the sixteenth century. The Glockenspiel (church bell mechanical display) plays four times daily at 9:21, 11:31, 15:31, and 18:31. The building across from the church has been there since 1597.

Mile 5.5 (8.9 km): Follow R-1 through a Feuchtwiese or a wetland area. For less than half a mile, the path is first rough gravel then deteriorates into a single dirt footpath. You can easily skirt this part of the path by staying on the automobile road to the north out Rotenburg and then cutting over to the riverbank in a mile or so. (You know this, but we don’t so we ride it the hard way.)

Mile 10.7 (17.2 km): Jog right then left between the two towns of Niederellenbach (Alheim) and Heinebach (Alheim). There is no sign for the first part of the jog but there is one for the last part of the jog.

Mile 14.6 (23.5 km): This is Altmorschen, the site of an ancient monastery. In the sixteenth century the monastery was converted into a palace for members of Landgrave Karl’s family. Landgrave Karl is famous for Karlshafen and encouraging the Baroque architectural style in this part of Germany.

Mile 17.1 (27.5 km): Enter Binsförth after climbing a small hill. Then drop back down to river level before climbing another small hill into Bieseförth at mile 18.3 (29.5 km).

Mile 20.5 (33 km): Here the signs differ from the map (ours is older than yours). The map shows the trail on the left bank but the signs take us over to the right bank. Once over the bridge, turn left and follow the signed path.

[Ed Note: The bridge is no longer there, now there is a sort of a cable car across the river. One can operate it from the bank with a hand crank or from within the car (the car is more like a basket of people and bikes). This is also one of the places where R-5 diverges from R-1. R-5 would take you over the hill to Homberg-Efel]

Mile 22.1 (35.6 km): Ride along a paved path that soon runs alongside the Landstrasse.MelsungenMelsungenMelsungen

Mile 23.7 (38.1 km): Enter Melsungen. Living in Kassel for several months a year, we visit Melsungen often. Melsungen and Hann. Münden are two of the best preserved half-timbered villages in the area. Worth a stop to smell the roses.

Lobenhausen in backgroundMile 29.3 (47.2 km): Here is postcard-pretty Lobenhausen. The short four-sided onion-shaped church steeple here is typical of many we have seen along the Fulda River Valley.

Mile 31.3 (50.4 km): Enter Wagenfurth. As you ride toward Grabenau the path takes you up a 90-foot hill. If you like downhill drops as I do, go ahead and climb up. However, if you hate hills as much as Maxa, you can take a dirt path to the left just after the incline begins. that path takes you along the river and at the end of it you have a 10-foot pusher back to the street in Grabenau. Your choice.

Mile 30.5 (49.1 km): Because we do not know about the path, we coast down a short steep hill into Grabenau. At the bottom, we have a decision. Take the shortcut where you ride on a major Landstrasse L3221 for a ½ mile with almost no shoulder, climb a 60-foot hill, and then cross the Landstrasse with minimal visibility of on-coming BMWs. Or, spend about 20 minutes longer and follow the river around the Schlinge (oxbow, or where the river bends back on itself). The choice is easy, turn left and follow the river. Do not ask me how I know about the other choice.

Mile 34.9 (56.2 km): Here you enter Guxhagen. After you cross under the Landstrasse bridge, turn left at the T in the road.

Mile 35.3 (56.8 km): Ride straight ahead along the right bank of the Fulda. With the bridge on your left, cross Bruckenstresse onto Zum Ehrenhain, it is a paved bicycle path that is used by an occasional automobile. Regardless of which path is open when you get here, both are acceptable. We prefer the one along the river because of the lack of traffic and the scenery – but there is an 80-foot hill (up and down in ½ mile) just after you cross under the Autobahn on the riverbank route.

Mile 35.9 (57.8 km): Cross under the Autobahn on the bike path and follow it uphill just past the underpass. This path will take you over another bridge into Guntershausen. As you leave Guntershausen, you will be back on the riverbank until you get to the bridge into the Fuldabrück community of Dittershausen.

Mile 40.7 (65.5 km): Cross the bridge into Dittershausen and the right bank of the Fulda.

KasselKasselKasselKasselMile 41.1 (65.5 km): After passing a cool little restaurant kind of development in a former garden called the Wiesenwirt Fulda Knee at mile 41.1, you will cross back to the left bank at mile 42.1, climb a short small hill, and then drop back down the river.

Mile 43.2 (69.5 km): This is another footbridge that you will cross to the right bank. At about mile 44 you will pass one of our favorite restaurants where we ride to from our home in Kassel, it is called Restaurant Fährmann, they serve a great local dark beer we like.

Mile 46.7 (75.2 km): At the Damaskebrücke you can cross to the right bank again or stay on the left bank and ride down a street named Auedamm. Be careful at this intersection, it is tricky because the arterial from the south turns and crosses the bridge so the cars and bikes from the north on Auedamm must yield right-of-way. The R-1 signs will lead you past a formal garden (Karls Aue) and the Orangerie. The Orangerie is worth a stop and "look-see." Historically an Orangerie was a place to keep orange trees over winter. The suspension footbridge just past the Orangerie is named the Drahtbrücke, a Draht is a wire. There you cross again to the right bank of the Fulda. If you opt to stay in Kassel, go into the downtown area west of the Orangerie. It is a little uphill and left off the R-1. You can find a fairly inexpensive hotel right downtown, next to the town hall, or Rathaus.

Back at the Damaskebrücke, If it is a warm and day, you will notice riding through a nude beach area called an FKK Gelände. FKK stands for Freie Körper Kultur or Free Body Culture. If you do cross to the right bank, you will ride through a large park and bypass downtown Kassel. There are very few R-1 signs on the right bank through the park. The path is mostly well-packed gravel. Exiting the park and back on city streets you will pass to the right of the Drahtbrücke and rejoin the other R-1 path that crosses on that bridge. Continue following the R-1 to the Hafenbrücke.

Mile 49.2 (79.1 km): Crossing back to the left bank at the Hafenbrücke turn right on the bike path just over the bridge. Continue to follow the R-1 signs through the fields toward Hann. Münden.

56.0 (90.1 km): Here is a restaurant/hotel called the Graue Katze, a great place for a break and to view the small village of Spiekershausen on the other side of the Fulda.

Continuing, we cross a cute covered bridge over one of the many streams that flow into the Fulda. We note a sign indicating that a bike-friendly Gasthaus is to the left in Simmershausen. The river bends back on itself here making an oxbow (in German a Schlinge) and we are on the outside of the oxbow. Across the river, inside the bend is Gut Kragenhof. A Gut is a set of buildings for a large farm. A Hof is also building for a large farm but the building for a Hof is of the kind that includes dwelling for people and the barn all in the same structure. A Hof typically forms an L or a U shape with the barnyard in the middle.

Simmershausen is part of the community of Fuldatal – the town where the Grimm brothers’ fairytale Hans in Luck is based. In this fairytale, Hans, who had just completed his 7-year vocational apprenticeship was paid a lump of gold. As he made his way through Fuldatal, he traded his hard-earned gold first for a horse, and then he traded the horse for a cow, then the cow for a pig, then the pig for a goose and finally the goose for a grindstone. Obviously, one would question the business acumen of someone who traded away 7-years work for a grindstone, right? Well, it gets worse. Upon losing the grindstone down a well, Hans proclaimed, “I am the luckiest man on Earth.” And with a light heart and no weight of wealth upon his shoulders, he walked home to his mother. The message? Perhaps people unburdened with wealth have a happier life.

Just past Gut Kragenhof at about mile 65.6 is a bridge over a small creek, we see a Grenzstein on the right of the path. These tombstone-like markers were used on the boundary of properties such as kingdoms and fiefdoms in the past. In this case, only the date 1838 is readable.

Mile 68.2.8 (109.7 km): Turn left at the Altstadt and Werratal sign following them into the Old Town area of Hann. Münden, abbreviated as Hann. Münden. It is possible to book accommodations in advance for Hann. Münden by using this link: and click on "English" if your German is a little rusty like mine.

MuendenMuendenMuendenMuendenMuendenMuendenMile 68.8 (110.6 km): This is the end of the ride, the city of Hann. Münden. The natives refer to their city as simply Münden but the maps refer to it as Hann. Münden. As Shakespeare said, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. This city is said by some to be the best example of Middle Age architecture in this part of Germany. It certainly is one of the best-preserved Fachwerk Stadt or half-timbered town in Germany and that says a lot because there are many.

The town was established before 1247. There is a small Schloss or palace here and on the hill overlooking the town is a defensive structure called the Tilly Schanze. In the Rathaus, (town hall) there are murals that tell of floods, being conquered by the Swede Tilly in the 17th Century, and a doctor Eisenbart, who died here in 1727. Doctor Eisenbart was thought to be a quack. Many thought his methods were ill-advised and some of his patients died. However, later some of his methods were held to be correct but ahead of their time. Not soon enough though to prevent a catchy tune about his quackery becoming popular among school-age children. The Rathaus glockenspiel plays this tune at Noon, 3:00 PM and 5:00 PM daily. Inside the Rathaus has a tourist information office too.

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I found a bit more on the good doctor Eisenbart on the Internet. The following is attributed to "Johann Andreas Eisenbart was born in Oberviechtach on 27th March 1663 as the son of an eye doctor who also carried out hernia- and groin operations. After a 10-year apprenticeship with his brother-in-law Alexander Biller in Bamberg, he began working on his own in Altenburg/Thuringia, where his family lived from 1685 - 1703. He toured the markets throughout Germany. "There is evidence of Doctor Eisenbart actively working in over 83 places. Ten German Princes granted him privileges within their principalities. "He treated people mainly for eye complaints (cataracts), inguinal and scrotal hernias, bladder stones, harelips, and cancer. He invented a needle for performing cataract operations and an instrument for the removal of adenoids. Furthermore, he prepared many medicines himself and manufactured hernia trusses, false teeth, and artificial eyes, to mention but a few. With the help of his wife, who later was to bear him seven children, he also treated women's diseases.

"On 1st September 1727, suffering from gout in the feet and the after-effects of a stroke, he made his will in Göttingen at the Inn "Zum Schwarzen Bären". He is believed to have then spent some time in Hann. Münden, where he died in the building on Lange Strasse 34, (then the Inn "Zum Wilden Mann", owned by the baker Berthold Schepeler) on 11th November 1727. Doctor Eisenbart was buried in a crypt in the choir room in front of the altar in the Church of St. Aegidius. In 1837, a tombstone was erected on the northern wall of the church in his memory.

"He was better than his reputation ... "He was not a quack or a charlatan, but an extremely successful doctor with a great sense of responsibility. His somewhat distorted image in many literal publications and plays and in the Doctor Eisenbart song is simply due to the fact that he was misjudged, and his talents as a skilled physician in the Baroque era were not sufficiently recognized during the 19th and 20th century. "People then failed to realize that this itinerant physician was the only surgeon ever to exist between the 13th and the 18th century. At that time, academically trained doctors were only treating internal illnesses. "Among his contemporaries, Doktor Eisenbart was admired as a gifted surgeon who knew how to cleverly attract his patients with the help of a large stage of traveling comedians, artists and musicians. When he was carrying out his operations, the entertainer´s performance and loud music had to drown the patient´s bloodcurdling screams, because in those days anesthetics were not yet available. For this reason, many of his envious contemporaries called him a barker, a swindler and a charlatan. Numerous attestations of gratitude on record, however, bear witness to his medical skills and his successful cures. Nevertheless, historically Doctor Eisenbart is still regarded as an ostentatious charlatan and none too gentle physician using questionable methods.

A research institute dedicated to Doctor Eisenbart has been in existence in Oberviechtach in the Oberpfälzer Wald since 1963. A museum was established by the local chemist Karl Foißner and an archive was set up by Dr. Erich Mathieu. These institutions all aim to restore the professional reputation of this skillful doctor who has been so greatly misjudged and yet was the most famous among his countless colleagues of his time."

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