History, customs and people
Heiden Museum presents the recent history of the village since the devastating village fire of 1838, providing interesting insights into the culture and people of the Appenzeller Vorderland region.
The history of this spa village begins with the village fire
On 7 September 1838, everything changed in the Appenzell village of Heiden: It took just a few hours for a devastating fire that broke out in a smithy and was fanned by fierce föhn winds to reduce 129 houses and outbuildings to rubble and ashes.
The village was then completely rebuilt in the classical style. This marked the beginning of an era in which the little spa village achieved international acclaim, with whey cures, ophthalmology, mobilization therapy, a spectacular spa concert hall with a ten-man orchestra, a standard-gauge cogwheel railway with a direct connection from Berlin, and a hotel business welcoming guests from all over the world.
Easter texts: a test for both pupils and teachers
The next section is dominated by a unique collection of Appenzell illuminated manuscripts. At Easter time between 1775 and 1825, pupils had to produce calligraphy works, which were then graded. The ultimate beneficiaries were their teachers, who then usually illuminated the manuscripts.
Traditional customs and handicrafts
You cannot miss the collection of antique clocks, which ticks and trills. Also on show are old weights and measures, while melodic three-tone Appenzell cowbells and splendid folk art complete the collection.
Famous people in Heiden
A number of famous people have shaped the history of Heiden:
- Prof. Albrecht von Graefe, ophthalmologist
- Henry Dunant, founder of the Red Cross and first Nobel Peace Prize winner
- Alfred Tobler, a celebrated opera singer in his time, who promoted Appenzell folk songs and the Appenzell sense of humour.
- Carl Böckli (Bö), a major contributor to the satirical magazine "Nebelspalter," promoting intellectual defence of the country among other things.
- And many more
Andres Stehli, Kurator
Am Kirchplatz 5
|Tel.:||+41 (0)71 898 50 50|
|Fax:||+41 (0)71 898 50 55|