The history of the village Cunewalde
The village Cunewalde is located in the idyllic valley surrounded by the mountain range of the legendary Czorneboh (561m/1795,2 feet) and the Bieleboh (499m/1596,8 feet) in the middle of the Oberlausitzer hilly country between the cities Bautzen and Löbau. For the first time it was documentarily mentioned in 1222. But it originated long before documents show. It is certain that Cunewalde already existed next to the Brettstraße (board street) between Bautzen and Bohemian Zwickau, which was build around 1004.
The actual settlement took place in the 13'th century, when Franconian and Thuringian settlers came via Saxony to the Lausitzer hilly country to look for a new home. The colonists came in long tracks with all their belongings they had. They found fertile pastures, crystal- clear water and forests rich in timber to build their first houses. They settled down by a creek in the direction of the mountains to the North and South on both sides of the creek "Cunewalder Wasser" and they cultivated the land into fields. Each settler got a small strip of land (Hufe) of up to 2,5 km/1,55 miles long. Most of the time this strip of land (Hufe) stretched from the farm to the ridge of the mountains out of granite, so that Cunewalde became a typically Waldhufendorf (wood-huf-village).
In Cunewalde was hardly any warlike conflict but they suffered just as much as those in waring areas. From 1631 until 1633 half of the population died because of the plaque. In 1758 the 7 year war reached its bloody peak with the battle in Hochkirch. The Austrian General Daun used the Cunewalder valley in order to secretly form into line, so that they could overwhelm the Prussians with a sudden attack.
Cunewalde was a pure farming village. It is farming and forest-clearing, which secured the existence of the increasing number of inhabitants. Especially after the 30 year war trades developed. The linen weaving mill was established from the support of the Bohemian migrants. The Cunewalder linen ("Cunewalder Leimd") was of a high quality and had the best reputation far and wide. In many houses young and old people sat at handlooms from dawn until dusk -although they were poorly paid.
Because of the competitive textile industry, the (house-)weavers disappeared and the textile industry developed at the end of the 19'th century. Cunewalder businesspersons were the first in Oberlausitz, who built up bigger weaving halls and used more modern technology. Referring to this rapid development the transportation system had to keep up with it as well. A special milestone was the building of the traintracks between Großpostwitz and Cunewalde (1890) and the extension to Obercunewalde (1896). In 1928 the traintracks were extended to Löbau.
Cunewalde has a lot of geographical variety. With 2322 hectares and its unique located valley, it is one of the biggest and most beautiful places in Oberlausitz. The districts of Cunewalde, which were founded at different times, are situated at the bottom of the mountains. Schönberg at the mountain called Herrnsberg, which was documented in 1317, when the knight Hecelin von Cunewalde sold the small town to the Domstift Budissin (Domstift Bautzen). Schönberg stayed a selfgoverned community until 1976. Halbau am Hochstein was founded around 1550. Cunewalde is 8 km/4,96 miles long and the attractive small village Halbau is situated at the edge of the forest at the east point. Klipphausen am Czorneboh is a beautiful place behind the 30 year old "Buschmühle" (saw mill) where the Cunewalder Landlord Wolf Rudolf von Ziegler und Klipphausen let 15 migrants from Bohemian-Silesier settle. Friedrich Wilhelm von Ziegler und Klipphausen arranged the founding of the district Zieglertal am Bieleboh far away from the troubles of Cunewaldes Centre in 1781. Cunewalde has a lot of geographical variety. With 2661 hectares and is one of the biggest and most beautiful places in Upper Lusatia. The districts of Cunewalde, which were founded at different times, are situated at the bottom of the mountains:
Part of the village Schönberg
Schönberg at the mountain called Herrnsberg, which was documented in 1317, when the knight Hecelin of Cunewalde sold the small town to the cathedral chapter Budissin (Domstift Bautzen). Schönberg stayed a selfgoverned community until 1976.
Part of the village Weigsdorf-Köblitz
In 1320 at the town of Bautzen a fief letter was issued to Peter von Kopperitz. He bought Köblitz and Schönberg to Weigsdorf. It was documented as "Wiegendorf" in 1454. Joining of the both villages took place in 1905, until this time always called Weigsdorf with Köblitz. Cunewalde and Weigsdorf-Köblitz united to the community Cunewalde in 1999.
Part of the village Halbau
Halbau at Hochstein was founded around 1550. This attractive part is situated edge of the forest at the east point.
Part of the village Klipphausen
Klipphausen at the foot of the mountain Czorneboh - In 1681 the Cunewalder Landlord Wolf Rudolf von Ziegler settled here 15 migrants from Bohemian-Silesier. It is a beautiful place behind the 340 years old "Buschmühle" (saw mill).
Part of the village Zieglertal
Zieglertal at the foot of the mountain Bieleboh - Friedrich Wilhelm von Ziegler und Klipphausen arranged the founding of the district far away from the Centre of Cunewalde in 1781.
Further on Cunewalde is well known for its church. It is an imposing baroque building built in 1793, which under went several rebuildings and renewals just as the building of the 61m/195,2 feet high tower in 1893. It is also the largest village churche in Germany - with 2632 seats and 3 galleries. Unique as well is the Lichterzug (procession) of the candidates for confirmation during the service at Christmas eve.
The numerous Oberlausitzer Umgebindehäuser (houses with special architecture) are especially beautiful. There are 400 listed buildings and most of them are Umgebindehäuser. Preserved with care they show the art and skill of the Cunewalder master builder.
Closely involved with Cunewalde are the life and works of the poet Wilhelm von Polenz (1861-1903). He was born in Cunewalde, which inspired him to become an author. His most famous novel "Der Büttnerbauer" describes the decline of a rural family. He denounced his own nobility, because of their incapability to solve society's problems. Other novels, numerous poems and stories belong to his life's works as a poet. He also kept in contact with Lew Tolstoi for many years. His posthumous works can be seen in Polenz museum.
Today Cunewalde offers everything that one could expect in a village. There are small and middle sized companies, a new industrial area, numerous workshops, doctors, dentists, an old people home, many clubs, a brass band, 130ear Fire brigade tradition. That is where you can find the daily engagement of the community.
Cunewalde is still a popular tourist attraction. 10 restaurants, the hotel "Alter Weber" and especially the "Haus des Gastes - Blaue Kugel" is known for its hospitality, a good first impression and lasting memories. Some also like to visit the swimming-pool in Cunewalde, where you can have a great time and enjoy the warm water (24°C) from 15. May until 15. September.
Welcome in Cunewalde the most beautiful valley in Upper Lusatia.