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Thuringia, Germany Tourism
A visit to Kloster Veßra, Thuringia, Germany
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"Kloster" means abbey. In this case the small village in which this abbey was built many years ago carries the name "Kloster Veßra".
The abbey is not any longer existing, but you still can see the impressing ruins.
Today the large area is a showcase of various buildings which serve as a museum which tells many interesting details about the history and the life in the past.
Buildings have been moved from other areas to this place to demonstrate the living and working conditions. Special attention has been given to farming and agriculture and the equipment which was used in the different periods.
Check for events. Many of them do not need any knowledge of the German language, such as concerts or special displays of art.
The entrance to the former abbey
I arrived on an early winter morning and obviously I was the only visitor at this time. This gave me the opportunity to talk for a longer time to the very friendly employees.
As everywhere in the world also this museum would need more funding. I told them that we have similar places in Canada and what they do to attract people, like having guides in costumes of the period and demonstrations of how old tools were used etc.
I also mentioned the helpful work of volunteers and ask them whether there is nobody who would translate the many helpful information at least into English.
They listened but obviously I talked to the wrong people or they were still used that the government tells them every step they are allowed to do as it was done under the former regime.
Thuringia is so rich on history and culture that I enjoyed my visit even at this time of the year. If I would love winter sport I would have had even a better time. But not everybody loves everything.
I was pleased that somebody did excessive snow shoveling which allowed me easy access to all the attractions.
A chapel, called the "Torkirche St. Erhard" dates back to the 13 th century. After the reformation the chapel was converted and differently used. It even became an inn and later a school. Today it is used for concerts and presentations.
Naturally, the organ in the building does not date back to the 13 th century.
I learned very fast that even under the communist system very much important work was done to preserve all the heritage buildings.
It should be recognized that not everything was so bad as we "Wessies" were made to believe. It is time to become honest, to learn from each other and finally start to work together.
The following year I visited Kloster Veßra again, but this time my wife Elizabeth was with me and we had great sunshine. Everything was green and looked much more friendly than in winter.
A chapel, called the "Torkirche St. Erhard"
I visited barns which displayed many utensils which were used for farming. Large posters showed scenes when only animals were used and no tractors. Many people can still remember this time.
Old time farming equipment are displayed in many places
It was still common practice in many areas of Germany during and immediately after WWII.
Old and young lived together under one roof and everybody including the children had some duties.
Many half timbered houses can be found which are fully furnished in the appropriate style.
In one even a wood fired stove was lighted. The complete house was filled with smoke when the fire was started.
In another house a "Kachelofen" (a tiled stove) provided cozy temperatures. I was told that electrical heating elements were used in order not to do any damage to this wonderful antique piece.
A kitchen how it was used in the early fifties
Both East and West Germany were flooded after WWII with refuges who escaped the blood shed. It was a big problem to provide accommodation and food for all these people. They were feeling like kings if they had a kitchen like that.
I would not mind to sleep in such a bed!
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