The Baden Revolution in 1848/49

The battle at the Swabian Gate, Easter 1848

Badische Revolution in Freiburg1848

Easter 1848: Freiburg is besieged by 6000 soldiers of the Grand Duke of Baden and his aristocratic allies of Hessen and Nassau. 1500 insurgents are seeking refuge behind the city-walls of Freiburg. They are awaiting the arrival of their leader Friedrich Hecker. In Konstanz on April the 13th 1848 Hecker has initiated an armed revolt to abolish feudalism and to found a democratic republic. On Maundy Thursday the 20th April 1848 Hecker´s march is stopped by force of arms of the federal troops at the Scheideck-ridge near Kandern. Friedrich Hecker is lucky to escape to Switzerland.

On Easter Sunday 23th April 1848 a contingent of “Hecker´s march” under the command of Franz Sigel comes down from the Black Forest along Horben to Günterstal. In the confrontation with federal troops on Freiburg´s outskirts at the Sternwaldeck 20 insurgents and three soldiers lose their lives. The insurgents withdraw to Günterstal and later to Horben, where they spend the night.On Easter Monday 24th April 1848 Franz Sigel and his remaining 400 insurgents try to storm Freiburg. At the Swabian Gate the federal troops open the fire. Only a few of Sigel´s men are able to enter the city, most of them are forced to escape through the Dreisam Valley. With the aid of cannon fire the federal troops storm Freiburg, many insurgents of Freiburg and its environment are killed or arrested. It is the final defeat of “Hecker´s march”. Also other attempts fail to set up an order of justice and freedom. Only until the end of the First World War for a short period of time and then continually after the Second World War a democratic constitution is achieved, that derives from the values of the freedom movements of the 19th century.