Ansbach is located in the northern part of Bavaria, approximately 117 miles southeast of Frankfurt and 26 miles southwest of Nuernberg. Ansbach Military Community consists of three separate US installations. Shipton Kaserne, home to 6th Bn., 52nd Air Defense Artillery; Katterbach Kaserne, where the 1st Division's 4th Combat Aviation Brigade resides, is associated with Bismarck Kaserne, where the post exchange, theater, and community club are located, and Barton Barracks, home to the 235th BSB. The BSB has a fishing/camping area, Soldiers Lake, in Ansbach.
Ansbach is a small town and is the seat of Government for Middle Franconia, located in the southern part of Germany. Approximately 40,000 people live in Ansbach and 90,000 in the greater Ansbach area. There are some nice shopping centers in the city and excellent shopping possibilities within a 30 mile radius. Restaurants and recreation areas are outstanding. Ansbach is an old town close to very famous historical places. Middle Franconia is more a rural area but still very interesting.
Ansbach is a beautiful city with a rich history. Margrave's Palace, the Orangerie and Park, and the Kasper-Hauser-Memorial are just a few of the many historical sights located here. Ansbach has a population of about 40,000 and is the capital of Middle Franconia. There are many opportunities to travel and experience the unique German culture. Community life is excellent. The military community offers many programs geared toward families, as well as single soldiers, with many of the facilities and programs you would find on installations in the United States. These include medical and dental facilities, recreational activities and facilities, commissaries, post exchanges, movie theaters, restaurants, and more.
Ansbach is mentioned in records as far back as the days before Charlemagne ruled. The first settler, Onold by name, established himself in the Rezat Valley approximately 700 A.D. About 748 A.D. the Franconian nobleman, Gumbertus founded a Benedictine monastery here. He was later canonized. In due course, the monastery was made into a chapter house, around which a village grew until it was mentioned as a town in the year 1221 A.D.
In the 14th century, the Hohenzollern Burggraves from Nuernberg took possession of Ansbach. Since then, the fate of the town was linked to the Hohenzollern dynasty for almost 500 years. The importance of the settlement rose in the 15th century when the Hohenzollern created Electors and Margraves of Brandenburg. Ansbach became the permanent residence of the Franconian Hohenzollerns. Magnificent jousts were seen during the reign of Albrecht Achilles (1400-1486). When Reformation came, Margrave George the Pious supported Martin Luther and the first neoclassic houses in the center of town were built during his reign and that of his son, Georg Friedrich (1557-1603), who ruled the country peacefully. Countless inhabitants died of starvation and plague during the Thirty-Years War (1618-1648). The town itself survived relatively unharmed.
At the end of the 17th century, Ansbach was fast becoming a typical baroque residence. The most remarkable event of this time was the birth of Carolina of Ansbach. Queen Margravine Christine Charolotte (1723-1729) and her son, Carl Wilhelm Friedrich, nicknamed "The Wild Margrave" for his irascibility, did much for the embellishment of his capital. He was married to a sister of Friedrich the Great of Prussia.
Quite different from the "Wild Margrave" was his son, Alexander. He was influenced by favorites around him; first by Mademoiselle Clarion, who was a French actress, and later by an English woman. Ansbach was given to the Kingdom of Bavaria in 1806 by Napoleon I and this ended the Hohenzollern era. Industrialization progressed very slowly in Ansbach. The town was characterized as being an administrative and cultural center. Only after World War II did Ansbach begin to catch up in this respect. The historical core of Ansbach was spared during World War II and it has kept its baroque character. Since 1970, Ansbach has enlarged its municipal area by annexing adjacent communities.
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