The history of Beuggen castle – 770 years
The origins of Beuggen castle are unknown. However, the presence of a knight called Mangold in Buckein castle in the thirteenth century is documented.
The castle was founded and the building of the actual castle on the Rhine started in 1246
The castle was completed in 1268. It was the seat of the Landkomtur for over 200 years and blossomed as a result. The death of Buckard von Schellenberg put paid to this affluence. After his death, the statutory seat of the Landkomtur was moved to Altshausen in Saulgau. During the Peasant Wars, in May 1525, the castle was looted and damaged. The Komtur von Reischach fled and the castle was deserted. Numerous buildings were badly damaged. As a result, the new Komtur, Georg von Andlau, strengthened the defensive walls, extended and deepened the moat, and erected a second defensive wall with 5 watchtowers. The old entrances were closed and replaced by new, wider openings next to the old ones. Today, this is clearly visible at the entrance towards the railway station. When the monastery was converted to a princely estate, 1585 – 1598, a new castle was built.
During the Thirty Years War, 1618 – 1648, the castle was occupied and looted on numerous occasions. It survived the war although it was badly damaged. It was used by the Swedes, Imperial Forces and the French troops as their headquarters.
Between 1752 – 1757 the castle was completely renovated
The changes were orchestrated by Johann Caspar Bagnato. In 1806, the castle became the property of the Grand Duchy of Baden. The castle and the former hospital became the property of the Karsau parish. After 1806, the newly found Grand Duchy of Baden became the owner of the castle and the attendant land. As a result, the valuable silverware and library treasures were sold and removed from the castle. The land was leased and the knights’ mansion became desolate.
During the Napoleonic wars, 1814, the castle was used as a field hospital.
In a short period of time the wounded and diseased were brought into the castle. Typhus, smallpox and other epidemics broke out. Between 1814 and 1815, 3000 Austrian and 300 German soldiers died in Beuggen as a result of insufficient care for the infirm.
In 1819 Christian Heinrich Zeller and a distinguished educationalist, Christian Heinrich Splitter, visited the facility. They wanted to found an establishment for the numerous destitute and poor children from the area and to send teachers from here to the surrounding children and communities.
Although the building had not been cleaned and repaired after the looting, the Grand Duchy in Karlsruhe was approached with a view to leasing the infrastructure. This was the beginning of the orphanage which survived the minor and major catastrophes of the 19th and 20th centuries on the castle ground until its dissolution in 1980. Otto Kollmar and Dieter Katz served as the last directors of the orphanage.
In 1983, the Evangelical Church took charge of Beuggen castle. Shortly afterwards, 1985, the Evangelical Conference and Seminar Centre was founded. Extensive renovations followed. In 1989, the first of these were completed.
The regional church in Baden took charge of the castle in 1996. As a conference centre, Beuggen offers the ideal location for various events, such as in-house meetings, special church services, etc. As a result of dramatic changes to the financial health of the organization, the Conference Centre had to be reorganised in 2002. This averted the closing at the time, but the Evangelical conference centre closed in 2016.
From 1st January until 6th March 2017 all rooms in the old and new castle were completely refurbished. The kitchen was also upgraded.
The new owner is the architect and businessman Kai Flender who already owns Tiengen castle. The operator of the hotel, restaurant and conference facilities is Christian Herzog who runs the Ringhotel Goldenberg Kops in Bad Säckingen.