Museums: Theodor-Zink-Museum and Wadgasserhof
The “Theodor-Zink-Museum” was founded in 1926 as the “Kaiserslautern Stadtmuseum”. The teacher Theodor Zink who collected a large variety of local artefacts for many decades, dedicated the museum to folklore.
In May 1935, the “Theodor-Zink-Museum” was moved within the city, but was closed during World War II because of air attacks. Its artefacts were taken to a safe place in Bavaria.
After the war, some of the inhabitants of Kaiserslautern gathered to re-open the city’s museum. After all artefacts were brought back, the museum was opened in 1978 at the “Haus Rheinkreis”, a beautiful old house in the city center.
Today, the Theodor-Zink-Museum is also a museum of local history, and visitors can see a permanent exhibition displaying the history of Kaiserslautern city and the region. It illustrates the area’s most important events and epoches, from the first traces of settlers to the present.
In chronological order, the exhibition depicts the development of Kaiserslautern and the region. You will see how the city walls of Kaiserslautern were constructed, and how the Reformation and the so-called Bauernkrieg, a 16th-century rebellion by common people against feudal landlords, affected the history of the region.
Even though the exhibition focuses on Germans, it is still a great chance for Americans to learn about the history of Kaiserslautern. The museum offers guided tours in English. Reservations can be made at 0631-365-2327.
At the “Wadgasserhof”, the museum presents applied art. The classical topics as ceramics and porcelain, furniture, glass, noble and base metals, tools and equipment are extensively presented. Craftwork and design also depict central key points. Some special exhibitions give a forum of contemporary applied art, experimental design and photography.
Therefore, one of the museum’s subsequent aims is to engage in the discussion on ‘cultural contacts’. Through exhibitions, events and the formation of cooperation networks, the museum has firmly established itself among its partners as a place of intercultural interaction. Furthermore, as a cultural-historical institution, the Theodor-Zink-Museum considers itself as an observer of current social and intercultural processes such as migration research, as well as a place of international expert discourse in the broad field of popular visual cultures.
The intent is to show individuals in relation to their environment and the economy, to history and to society, as well as to illustrate how they feel about their place in the world.
During the past years, these topics were covered by several exhibitions, each accompanied by a series of events. Following the tradition of the former museum for folklore (Volkskunde), the museum also continues to engage itself with the daily culture of our society. The issue of ‘migration’ also plays a leading role in the exhibitions.
Directions: Exit Autobahn 6 at Kaiserslautern-Centrum and follow L395 through the city.
Times: The museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday to Friday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. It is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
Admission Costs: The permanent exhibition is free. The special exhibition is 5 EUR for adults and 2,50 EUR for students with a student identification card. A guided tour with a maximum of 20 people costs additional 55 EUR. The price for guided tours outside the regular hours is 70 EUR.
Food and beverages: The location of the museum is at Steinstraße right in the city center close to several restaurants.
Info: Information on the Theodor-Zink-Museum is available on the Kaiserslautern homepage www.kaiserslautern.de.
Information is in German only. The museum’s telephone number is 0631-365-2327. Parts of the museum can also be rented for private activities as long as they do not interfere with the operation of the museum.