Lichtenfels Castle

Just a few years after Lichtenfels Castle was erected, it was destroyed. Abbot Hermman I of Corvey had the fortress rebuilt again between 1223 and 1230. Towards the end of the 13th century the Counts of Waldeck became the owners of Lichtenfels Castle, however they did not live in the castle themselves. Instead, Burgmannen were appointed who were granted this office as a feudal tenure by the Waldeck Counts.

Burgmannen lived in the castle but, in return, had to serve the liege lord by providing him with armed men. In the year 1413, members of the family of Dalwigk, who were later to give their name to the village, appeared for the first time amongst the liege takers. The castle was destroyed during battles at the turn of the 16th and 17th century, but was partially rebuilt again in 1631.
In the following centuries, the castle fell more and more into disrepair. By the beginning of the 20th century it was a ruin. Extensive reconstruction work finally began in 1906. The owner Friedrich von Dalwigk wanted to give the castle its medieval appearance back. The First World War thwarted completion of the reconstruction.

In 1950, Rabe von Dalwigk sold his castle to the Anker-Werke from Bielefeld who developed the fortress into a recreation home for its employees. The employees of the cash register manufacturers have been relaxing at Lichtenfels Castle in the "Waldeckische Schweiz" for a good twenty years.
When the Anker-Werke became insolvent in 1976, the castle was put up for sale. Five people from Holland bought the castle in order to turn it into a first-class hotel. They also wanted to build a holiday village too. This project was not to be realised and the Dutch castle owners surprisingly withdrew from the sales contract in 1979. A Belgian-Dutch company then wanted to establish the first "Robinson Club" on German soil around Lichtenfels Castle but this idea also came to nothing. In the meantime, the empty castle continued to crumble.

At last, in 1990, the castle found a new owner. The Siekmann Family bought Lichtenfels Castle. Tan Siekmann, founder of the IT-security company Biodata and later Safe-com, took up residence within the old walls with his company. The fortifications finally wake from their beauty sleep.

Schaaken Monastery Ruins

Schaaken Monastery, lying between the Lichtenfels urban districts of Goddelsheim and Immighausen, was first founded in 1189 by the imperial abbey of Corvey, initially in the village of Goddelsheim which had belonged to Corvey since 888, but it was then later moved to Schaaken to the east of Goddelsheim in 1223. The region of the later county of Waldeck had been under the influence of Corvey since the early Middle Ages which was predominantly the greatest manorial lord in the area, and also in ecclesiastical terms, through significant donations and acquisitions. Corvey sought to consolidate and expand its position by establishing towns (such as Fürstenberg, Sachsenberg), building castles (Lichtenfels) and founding monasteries (Schaaken).
The monastery existed until 1591. Thereafter, it was a protestant-secular convent for female members of the nobility until 1848. Many of the abbesses were daughters or sisters of the counts and princes of Waldeck. The late-romanesque-early-gothic monastery burnt down in 1518, but was rebuilt again. After 1848, it was used as a barn for the subsequent convent farm. It 1913, it again completely burned down after being hit by lightning. It was only in 1958 that the remaining structure was made safe.

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