Historical chronology

This historical chronology records events that have affected Fleckenstein Castle from 1174 until today.

March 2016


First known mention of the name Fleckenstein. The family are Imperial officials. They hold the fortress in the name of the Hohenstaufens and serve as soldiers at the Imperial palace at Haguenau.


Period of the « Great Inter­Regnum » in the Holy Roman Empire between the death of Frederic I, the last of the Hauenstaufen Emperors and the election of Rudolf of Hapsburg. The Fleckenstein family attain noble rank, become independent and cease to be officials of the Empire. They achieve recognition as owners of all the lands that they had previously held as tenants of the Emperor.


As a result of a quarrel, Wofram de Fleckenstein takes Fredéric de Bolanden, Bishop of Spire, prisoner. Hapsburg Emperor Rudolph lays seige to the castle in 1276 and forces Wolfram to surrender and release the Bishop.


The Fleckenstein family is forced to hand over all the lands that they have illegally acquired notably to the Lichtenberg family.

End of the 14th Century

The castle would seem to be badly maintained. The Fleckenstein family was impoverished during this period of rural economic depression and the competition from growing towns where the greater part of mercantile activity is becoming concentrated.


Reinforcement and improvement of the defences to resist artillery attacks : building of an outer wall or faussebraye and towers on the south wall etc.


Family meeting at the castle after the death of Louis I. Important decisions are taken concerning the disposition of the family inheritance. A reinforcement of clan loyalty.


Introduction of the Reform into the lands of the Fleckenstein family. At the same time the castle becomes a place for storing archives.


The castle is occupied and pillaged by French soldiers commanded by the Marquis de Vaubrun during the Franco­Dutch War.


The castle is destroyed using black gun powder by Mellac, on the orders of General Joseph de Monclar, who was concerned about the advance of the Imperial army. From this time it was abandoned.


Death of the last Baron de Fleckenstein, Henri­Jacques, leaving no male heir.


The Fleckenstein is sold as a Bien National.


The Napoleonic Brigadier General Olivier Harty, Irish by extraction, purchases the ruins of the castle to acquire the title that goes with it. He translates the title into French and so becomes the Baron de Pierrebourg. The ruins and the lands of the castle are in future in separate ownership.


The German Sous­Préfet of Wissembourg, von Stichaner, makes it possible to visit the castle. Thanks to the development of the railway the castle gradually becomes a noted landmark for hikers.


The Fleckenstein is listed as a historic building.


Setting up of the Syndicat d'intiative of Lembach with the renovation and development of the Fleckenstein as a main project. The site association manages the castle until 2005.


Archeological excavations on the platform at the top of the castle : filtration cisterns, keep, kitchen area.


Major works to make the structure safe and to consolidate the ruins (new guard rails, spiral staircase, facing wall, flanking towers on the south wall, etc.)


The Alsace Region purchases all the land on which the castle stands and grants it to the Commune of Lembach.


Renovation of the old farm buildings to receive the public (ticket office, café, shop, parking in the forest) and the opening of the cross border promotional centre 'the P'tit Fleck' by the Community of Communes of the Vallée of the Sauer.


Development of the site and the setting up of the discovery trail in and around the castle designed for families. Comprehensive management of the site by a team from the Community of Communes of the Vallée de la Sauer­Pechelbronn.

Follow the night watchman

Follow the night watchman on his rounds and absorb the atmosphere of the castle in the evening light. His light hearted commentary will give you a relaxed and different insight into every day life in 1672. Length of tour : 1h15 Tickets : 6€ per adult ­ €4 per child

Incidents in the history of the castle of Fleckenstein

The legend of the well