Witzenhausen is a small town in the Werra- Meißner-Kreis in northeastern Hesse ( Germany ). It received city rights in 1225 and was until 1974 county seat.

Nationally known, the city is through the invention of the compost bin in 1983 and as a major growing area for cherries; it is considered the largest single cherry growing area in Europe. The cherry has a long tradition in Witzenhausen and so the Kesperkirmes ( Kesper = cherry) is celebrated annually in July, when a cherry queen is chosen.

The University of Kassel in Witzenhausen has a secondary location where among other things the unique, nationwide course Organic Farming is offered. Also located in the town at an educational establishment ( DEULA ) for environmental and technology, agriculture, horticulture and landscape gardening.

  • 2.1 Amalgamations
  • 2.2 Population development
  • 2.3 Population Projection
  • 3.1 City Council
  • 3.2 Mayor
  • 3.3 Twin towns
  • 4.1 Museums
  • 4.2 building
  • 4.3 parks
  • 6.1 Media
  • 6.2 traffic
  • 6.3 Education
  • 7.1 Sons and daughters of the town
  • 7.2 personalities who have worked in Witzenhausen or act


Geographical location

Witzenhausen is between Göttingen and Kassel, close to the A7 and A38 motorways, at the Nordostabdachung of Kaufunger forest, which is part of the Natural Park Meissner Kaufunger forest and to the northwest to the Natural Park Munden. It is located approximately 30 km east of Kassel (Hessen ), 16 km east- southeast of Hann. Munden (Lower Saxony), 25 km south of Göttingen ( Lower Saxony) and 23 km north- west of Eschwege (Hessen) at the confluence of Gelster into the Werra, northwest of the city of Wilhelm Bach houses empties into the.

Neighboring communities

In the north, Witzenhausen adjacent to the town of Hann. Munden, the communities Rosdorf and Friedland (all three in Lower Saxony Göttingen district ), to the east by the municipalities of Neu-Eichenberg ( in the Werra -Meissner ), Born Hagen and Lindewerra (both in the Thuringian district Eichsfeld ) in the south to the cities of Bath Allendorf and Großalmerode and the unincorporated area Gutsbezirk Kaufunger forest (all three in the Werra- Meißner -Kreis). To the west it borders the Lower Saxon community Staufenberg in the district of Göttingen.


Besides the main town, which also includes the hamlet of Bischhausen belongs, belonging to Witzenhausen 16 districts. On the left Werra page are the neighborhoods Blickershausen (293 inhabitants), Dohrenbach ( 657 inhabitants), Ellingerode (344 inhabitants), Ermschwerd ( 1189 inhabitants), Hubenrode (191 inhabitants), Hundelshausen ( 1365 inhabitants), Kleinalmerode (925 inhabitants), Rossbach ( 825 inhabitants), Wendershausen (831 inhabitants) and goats Hagen ( 716 inhabitants).

On the right Werra side the districts Albshausen lie (69 inhabitants), Berlepsch - Ellerode - Hübenthal (132 inhabitants ), Gert Bach ( 947 inhabitants), Neuseesen (97 inhabitants), Unterrieden (914 inhabitants) and Werleshausen (503 inhabitants).


Since the Middle Ages some time viticulture was operated in Witzenhausen. In ancient sources mention the year 1226, where two yearly tun of wine tithe be delivered to the Archbishop of Mainz. Even in 1757 the vineyard on the sunny hillside between the Werra and the present railway line is mentioned. Is now a reminder of the street name of the B 80 to the vineyards and among the vineyards. Only in 2008 the wine was attempted because of climate change at this point again.

1898, the German colonial school (tropical School ) was established to train rural resettlers in the German colonies. Today The downstream equipment form a secondary site of the University of Kassel.


On 1 October 1971, the formerly independent communities Dohrenbach, Hundelshausen and Wendershausen were incorporated. On 31 December 1971 Unterrieden and on September 17, 1945 exchanged by the provisions in the agreement Wanfrieder from Thuringia to Hesse places Neuseesen and Werleshausen were added. Albshausen, Berlepsch - Ellerode, Blickershausen, Ellingerode, Ermschwerd, Gert Bach, Hubenrode, Kleinalmerode, Rossbach and goats Hagen followed on 1 January 1974.

Population Development

The development of the population in Witzenhausen.

Today's territorial status

Population forecast

The Bertelsmann Stiftung, signpost Demographic Change, provides data on the development of the population of 2959 municipalities in Germany (publication January 2006). For Witzenhausen a decrease of the population to 14.8 percent ( 2270 people) is predicted 2009-2030. Prediction of absolute population growth from 2009 to 2030 for Witzenhausen ( primary residences ):


City Council

The municipal election held 27 March 2011 yielded the following results:


Current mayor is Angela Fischer ( b. 1957 ), graduate agricultural engineer (CDU ), who was elected on 30 October 2005 as the successor of Günter Engel ( SPD ), who did not stand after 18 years with a small majority. February 12, 2012 Fischer was elected in a runoff election for a further term.

Twin Cities

Witzenhausen has partnerships with the French St. Vallier (since 1975), with the English Filton (since 1978), with the Italian Vignola (since 1995 ) and the Uganda Kayunga ( since 2001). Since 1979, lead Filton, St. Vallier and Witzenhausen a tripartite partnership.

Between Witzenhausen and Filton or Witzenhausen and St. Vallier find regular student exchanges take place ( comprehensive school ). The partnership between St. Vallier and Witzenhausen came about by accident. The last name of the then mayor of St. Vallier was Witsen - Adelmann. When he saw in April 1972 on a trip to Germany the name " Witzenhausen " on a street sign, he went there and it was the still existing partnership.

In addition, there was an exchange between a few years of high school in 100 Mile House (Canada, British Columbia) and the total school Witzenhausen, as well as an exchange between the vocational school and the Turlock High School ( USA, California).

Culture and sights


The ethnographic collection of the Ethnographic Museum Witzenhausen comprises about 2000 ethnographic objects, of which 1400 pieces that have been collected from friends and alumni of the former German colonial school Witzenhausen and its successor institutions since about 1900. The Foundation was founded in 1976 Ethnographic Museum Witzenhausen is the German Institute for Tropical and Subtropical Agriculture ( DITSL ) worn together with the city of Witzenhausen. The exhibition will constantly display 1200 ethnographic objects to 200 m². The main theme is the human society in relation to the natural environment. Exemplary devices for extraction, processing and consumption of food, clothing, jewelry and weapons from agricultural crops in Western, Southern and Eastern Africa and from Melanesia, Polynesia and South America are shown. Images and text panels complement the presentation. The representation of economic forms allowed the comparison of the adaptation strategies of the peoples of the respective natural conditions.

The greenhouse for tropical plants is used by the University for research and teaching, but is also regularly open to visitors.


  • Historic town center with several major half-timbered houses: Grau'sches House
  • Red House
  • Stone House
  • Sommermann'sches House
  • Meinhard Wedekind'sches House
  • Persch'sches House


  • City park with swan pond (former fire water pond )
  • Johannisberg Park

Recurring events

  • Cherry Blossom Walking (Nordic Walking) annually in mid-April (2010 for the tenth time ) in Unterrieden
  • Kesperkirmes: Old Town Festival with choice of cherry Queen, German Championship in cherry stone spitting.
  • Cherryman ( Everyman Triathlon )
  • Thanksgiving and Heimatfest (annually on the fourth weekend in August )
  • In 2006, Witzenhausen was the start of the third stage of the cycling race Tour of Germany
  • Christmas Market

Economy and infrastructure

In Witzenhausen Unterrieden produces Grimm & Triepel Kruse chewing tobacco, the last manufacturer of chewing tobacco in Germany. A major employer in Witzenhausen with approximately 430 employees, the DS Smith Paper GmbH. The company manufactures in Witzenhausen containerboard for the manufacture of packaging and tissue paper such as toilet paper or paper towel. Other major employers are the LIVELY Engine Parts GmbH, the hospital in the main town of Witzenhausen and the VG- Orth GmbH & Co. KG, which operates a gypsum plant in Hundelshausen district.


  • Witzenhäuser General ( HNA)
  • Marktspiegel
  • Witzenhüsser
  • Extra tip
  • Broadcasting Meissner


About the federal highways 27 (Göttingen- Eschwege ), 80 ( Hann Munden - Heiligenstadt ) and 451 ( Helsa - Witzenhausen ), the city is connected to the parent road network. In Hedemünden about 10 km away, is connected to the A 7 (Hamburg -Hannover -Göttingen -Kassel and Würzburg ). In Friedland is access to the A 38 in the direction of Halle (Saale ). In addition, Witzenhausen is located on the tourist routes German Framework Road and German Fairytale Road.

Witzenhausen has a railway station " Witzenhausen Nord" on the section Eichenberg - Kassel railway Halle- Hann. Munden. It lies above the town on the northern slope of the Werra Valley, is of trains to Kassel, Göttingen, Erfurt and Halle ( Saale) served. The former railway station " Witzenhausen South " was southeast of downtown and, like the Gelstertalbahn Eichenberg - Großalmerode decommissioned.

The district Gert Bach has another breakpoint at the Halle- Kassel railway.

The city bus in Witzenhausen is operated by Stadtwerke GmbH Witzenhausen.

The Segelfluggelände Castle Hill is located approximately 3 km northwest of Witzenhausen.


  • Primary school Gert Bach
  • Gelstertalschule Hundelshausen ( primary school )
  • Primary school Witzenhausen
  • Stone Gate School ( School with learning aids)
  • Johannisberg school Witzenhausen ( comprehensive school )
  • Vocational schools in the Werra -Meißner -Kreis
  • University of Kassel
  • Media Centre Witzenhausen
  • Image location of the Werra -Meißner -Kreis
  • German colonial school of agriculture, trade and commerce, today German Institute for Tropical and Subtropical Agriculture GmbH ( DITSL )
  • IBZW International Education Centre Witzenhausen GmbH
  • DEULA School for Applied Technology GmbH
  • Community College
  • Society for Sustainable Development Ltd. ( GNE) Witzenhausen

As part of an EU project launched in 2011, started 16 North Korean scientists and lecturers from Pyongyang a two -year training course on " Food Security in organic farming " in Witzenhausen, which was evaluated on the basis of the restrictive management of foreclosed land as extremely unusual educational program.


Sons and daughters of the town

  • Burkhardt of Berlepsch (1619-1691), lawyer and civil servant
  • Johann Jacob Schweppe (1740-1821), German watchmaker and silversmith
  • Carl Ludwig (1816-1895), German physiologist
  • Edward Schroeder (1858-1942), germanistischer medievalist
  • Theodor Neubauer (1890-1945), German sociologist, educator, parliamentarians (KPD ) and a resistance fighter
  • Karl August Eckhardt (1901-1979), lawyer, university professor, SS -Sturmbannführer and legal historian
  • Franz Alexius (1922-1997), football player
  • Hans stylet ( * 1922 ), German writer and translator
  • Erwin Henkel (* 1936), German politician ( SPD)
  • Helga Seibert (1939-1999), Justice of the Federal Constitutional Court
  • Rita face -Hesse ( b. 1945 ), German politician
  • Jürgen Engel ( b. 1947 ), Hessian politician (Greens ) and former Member of the Hessian Parliament
  • Bodo Abel ( born 1948 ), economist
  • Herbert Reyer ( b. 1949 ), senior director of archives and Head of the Department of Archives and Libraries of the City of Hildesheim and honorary professor at the University of Hildesheim
  • Edmund Neugebauer (* 1949), German physicians
  • Bernd Hucke (* 1952), German jurist, Judge of the Federal Court
  • Ullrich Messmer (* 1954), German politician ( SPD) and trade unionists
  • Manfred Strecker (* 1955), German geologist
  • Klaus -Peter Jünemann (* 1956), German physician and urologist
  • Tina Teubner (* 1966), German cabaret singer, musician and cabaret artist
  • Martin Glade (* 1972), actor
  • Stefan Markolf ( born 1984 ), first deaf German professional football player

Personalities who were active in Witzenhausen or act

  • Robert Denk (1916-1953) is said to have invented a tube -less Radio 1948
  • Ernst Koch (1808-1858), a romantic poet and lawyer
  • Hermann of Christians (1841-1919), member of the Reichstag Free Conservative Party, which called itself since 1871 on imperial level also German Reich Party
  • Karl von Berlepsch (1882-1955), writer, poet and painter

Images from Witzenhausen

Witzenhäuser City Hall

Memorial stone for the former synagogue

Two castle overlooking the Werra Valley