|o Mayor||Thomas Haas|
|o Total||34.22 km2 (13.21 sq mi)|
|Elevation||330 m (1,080 ft)|
|o Density||110/km2 (290/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
The borough of Schiltach consists of the parishes of Schiltach and Lehengericht. The two districts are geographically identical to the previously independent municipalities of the same name.
The district Schiltach includes the town of Schiltach, the villages of Grumpenbächle and Vorderheubach and the settlements of Auf der Staig, Blattenhäuserwiese, Grumpen and Kuhbacherhof (Vor Kuhbach). The ruined castle of Willenburg is also located within the borough of Schiltach.
The village of Lehengericht has its own council, a mayor as its chairman and its own village administration. The district of Lehengericht also consists of the settlements and hamlets of Herdweg, Auf dem Hof, Schmelzle, Vor dem unteren Erdlinsbach, Vor Reichenbächle, Welschdorf, Höllgraben, Im Eulersbach, Im hinteren Erdlinsbach, Kienbronn, Rohrbach, Rubstock, Deisenbauernhof and several isolated farms.
Schiltach was founded in the 11th century as a parish for the surrounding farms, which are older than Schiltach. Around the town church, which today stands in the town district Vorstädtle and is evangelic, rose a settlement named after the River Schiltach. The Dukes of Teck probably founded the town of Schiltach in the middle of the 13th century to secure their territories. They built a surrounding town wall with gates and a castle above the town. They did not build a church because Schiltach already had one.
The town was intended to act as a stop for travellers and as a trading post before the road descended to Rottweil. From about 1250, the castle and town took over the function of the Willenburg, which had guarded the road before the founding of Schiltach.
In 1371 Schiltach was transferred to the Dukes of Urslingen. After ten years, the impoverished dukes of Urslingen sold the castle and town to the Dukes of Württemberg. Württemberg retained Schiltach until 1810 except the years from 1519 to 1534, when Schiltach was occupied by the free imperial city of Rottweil and later (like the whole Duchy of Württemberg) by Further Austria.
In the "Gränzvertrag zwischen dem Königreich Württemberg und dem Großherzogthum Baden" (border treaty between the Kingdom of Württemberg and Grand Duchy of Baden), which was negotiated in Paris on October 2, 1810, several areas of the Oberamt Hornberg, besides Schiltach also the town of Hornberg and the communities Gutach and Kirnbach, got to the Grand Duchy of Baden. Wolfach became the new Amststadt of Schiltach and later the county town. The surrounding farm became as Lehengericht, an own community.
In 1952, Schiltach went to the state Baden-Württemberg. The county of Wolfach was dissolved in 1973 and Schiltach was allocated to Rottweil. The community of Lehengericht was reincorporated into the town of Schiltach in 1974. In 1979 the exclave of Sulzbächle/Fischbach went to the town of Wolfach, in return the area of Vor Heubach went to Schiltach.
During the Protestant Reformation, Schiltach was a part of Württemberg so it was Protestant, like the territorial lords. It did not change until the 19th century when, because of industrialisation, more and more Catholics moved in. Today in Schiltach there are Protestant and Catholic communities as well as a New Apostolic community and various minor religious communities.
Today's town emblem was adopted of the Dukes of Urslingen. The emblem became free to use as the last Urlinger, Duke Reinhold IV. of Urslingen died in 1442. Probably it was conveyed by the Count Ludwig of Württemberg, which was a patron of the town.
The emblem shows three red shields in a white field. Almost the same emblem can be found in Alsace at the house of the Rappolstein, which castle stands above Ribeauvillé. A member of the Ursling family married into Rappolstein family.
The local council has besides the mayor 14 members, including three women. The local election took place on 7 June 2009 and had following results:
|Bund unabhängiger Wähler||41,7% (+1,5)||6 Seats (=)|
|CDU||25,8% (+1,3)||4 Seats (=)|
|Freie Wählervereinigung Schiltach||20,9% (+0,7)||3 Seats (=)|
|SPD||11,6% (-3,4)||1 Seat (-1)|
The town district Lehengericht has a Ortsschaftsrat with eight members.
Despite its rural location the town possesses an industrial base with several internationally known companies. Already in the time of Industrialization there were industrial areas. Schiltach had several textile mills, which took advantage of the soft water from the two rivers; also there were multiple saw mills and tanneries for the same reason. Until the Kinzig Valley Railway was built there was a timber rafting, which had to close because of the railway. The wood from Schiltach and surroundings was partly shipped to the Netherlands on the Rhine, where it was used for ship building. Today these branches of industries have vanished except for the famous tannery Trautwein and some small saw mills. The earlier privileged timber rafting is kept alive by an active rafter group to keep the once important industry of Schiltach in mind.
The industry of Schiltach provides roughly 3350 local employments, which is extraordinary because Schiltach has only roughly 4000 citizens. Also the Schiltach is topographically disadvantaged because it is in the narrowest place in the Kinzig valley and the Autobahn 81 and Autobahn 5 motorways are far away. So much the more the town fathers are more grateful for the local companies to stay at Schiltach and are willing to support the companies.
The town of Schiltach has one elementary school and a Hauptschule (Nachbarschaftsschule Schiltach/Schenkenzell) with Werkrealschule. Secondary Schools are in the surrounding towns, e.g. in Schramberg, Wolfach and Hausach. There also is an evangelic and catholic kindergarten, a Waldorfkindergarten and a private day care centre. The Folk High School Schiltach/Schinkenzell is an outpost of the Folk High School Schramberg.
Schiltach is connected with the B 294 and B 462 federal highways, which close the gap between Rhine and Neckar, thus also the gap between the motorways A 81 and A 5. Traffic through Schiltach has been relieved by a bypass. The Bundesstraße 294 runs through the 1,830-metre-long Kirchberg Tunnel and the 830-metre-long Schloßberg Tunnel through which the B 462 also runs.
On workdays you can reach Freudenstadt and Offenburg with the Kinzig Valley Railway every hour. At weekends single trains drive via Offenburg to Strasbourg. Besides the actual train station Schiltach has another station closer to the town centrum where all passenger trains of a private railway company stop. The Schiltach-Schramberg railway opened in 1892 was closed in 1959 for passenger trains and 1989 for cargo trains, too. Meanwhile, the tracks were removed. The route is now a cycle route from Schiltach to Schramberg. Furthermore, there is a very recommendable cycle route through the whole Kinzig valley from Haslach to Alpirsbach. Various bus connections in direction of Offenburg and Freudenstadt as well as a strong connection via bus to the county town Rottweil complete the traffic. There is also a handicapped accessible bus which drives almost drives to all town districts at regular intervals.
The whole medieval inner city is under monument protection. The marketplace includes the town hall, which was designed by architect Heinrich Schickhardt and built during the Kingdom of Württemberg. There are many half-timber houses scattered throughout the town that date back to anywhere between the 16th and 19th centuries. Schiltach is part of the German Half-Timbered House Road tourist route.
The Silvesterzug is a procession that takes place in Schiltach on New Year's Eve. As part of an old tradition, the citizens walk through the streets with lanterns from the marketplace to the town church and sing hymms of Pietistic origins. During the procession, the street lights of the city are turned off and replaced with pitch torches; the only electric lights to be seen are those of Christmas trees shone through the windows of private households. The local pastor gives a speech from the window of the town rectory, accompanied by the performance of a choir and trombone ensemble. Afterwards, the citizens gather at the town hall, where the mayor also gives a speech.
Schiltach holds several markets over the year, e.g. a farmer's market on the third Sunday in October or an artisans' market on the last Sunday in April. Besides the Schiltacher Advent and the Silvesterzug every year Fastnacht is celebrated at the time of Fasching.