There was once, there is, there will be

An “Ecclesia St. Petri ad campos”, or a church in a field, was first mentioned in a charter. Around the solitary church in the field, today’s Petronilla Chapel, grew the village of Altenstadt, whose residents subsequently prided themselves on living at the very heart of the settlement. But over time, opinions changed, and Altenstadt was therefore incorporated into Feldkirch in 1925. Only the spirit of history does not forget and still tells of faded splendour to those who keep their ears peeled.


Around 1200 | Count Hugo I von Montfort establishes a town of 50 dwellings in a favourable location.

1218 | Count Hugo I founds the Johanites monastery and Johanites church, together with the first hospital.

1265 | The first part of Schattenburg Castle, the mighty keep, is completed.

1375 | Childless Count Rudolf V von Montfort sells the town and castle to the Habsburgs for around 30,000 guilders. He retains the title of Reeve until his death in 1390.

1510 | Emperor Maximilian visits Feldkirch, paying homage to the wine and Countess von Helfenstein. From then on, the “Bläsi” marks time at the Johanites church.

1515 | The heyday of humanism begins in Feldkirch with scientists such as Georg Joachim Rheticus, Achilles Pirmin Gasser, Ulrich Ellenbog, Hieronymus Münzer and the Hummelberger brothers.

1605 | Capuchin monastery and church are consecrated.

1649 | Martha Lochbüchlerin is tortured and sentenced during the last ever witch-hunt. She dies in prison before she can be publically executed.

1647 | Feldkirch is occupied by the Swedes and must pay heavy duties to prevent the town and castle from being razed. People feel extremely bitter towards the Swedes.

1697 | 150 houses fall victim to the largest fire in the town’s history.

1768 | Under Empress Maria Theresia, Feldkirch loses the privileges granted by Count Rudolf V in the great Freedom Charter.

1799 | Baron Franz von Jellachich defeats the French troops under General Massena in their attack on Feldkirch.

1856 | The Jesuits found what is later to become the internationally renowned elite grammar school, Stella Matutina. Its most famous pupil is Arthur Conan Doyle, who learns German here in 1875.

1864 | Josef Gasser is the last delinquent to be hanged in Göfis forest.

1919 | Emperor Karl I travels through Feldkirch from Austria following his abdication. Stefan Zweig describes this impressive scene in his autobiography.

1938 | Feldkirch station, well-guarded by the Nazis, plays a role in the fate of many people as an escape route to neutral Switzerland.

1943 | 200 people lose their lives during an air raid. Antoniushaus, which is being used as a field hospital, the teacher training college and a number of private houses are destroyed.

1977 | The Vorarlberg State Conservatoire is founded.

2008 | James Bond chases the baddy along Marktgasse in “Quantum of Solace”.

2012 | The first groundbreaking ceremony for the new Montforthaus takes place. Residents excitedly welcome the construction of the futuristic conference centre.