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Community Schimberg
ehemaliges Wappen Martinfeld

Coordinates 51° 17′ 17″ N, 10° 11′ 0″ O

Height: 274 m above sea level
Residents: 639
Incorporation: 30.July 1997
Zip code: 37308
Area code: 036082
Location of Martinfeld in Schimberg

Martinfeld Castle

St. Ursula and companions

Martinfeld is a district of the municipality Schimberg in the district Eichsfeld (Thuringia).

Geographical position

Martinfeld is located about nine kilometres south of Heiligenstadt in the valley of the Rosoppe, a tributary of the Frieda.[1] The village is framed by numerous mountains of the Obereichsfeld shell limestone plateau, such as the Bick (453.3 m) in the north, the Ibenkuppe (448.1 m) in the northeast, the Schloßberg (459.7 m) in the east and the Martinfelder Schimberg (470.3 m) in the south.

The former village (first mentioned in 1146), located one kilometre northeast on the road to Flinsberg, also belongs to the village[2] and today’s single farm Ascherode, as well as the Grabenmühle situated to the south.


The date of the founding of Martinfeld is unknown; it probably dates to the period of Frankish settlement after 531. It was probably the farm of a noble Martin.[3] As “Mertineveld”[4] in the Gau Germar-Mark in the county of Rüdiger, the place is mentioned in 1071 in a document of Heinrich IV.[1][5] In 1209 a Steffano de Mertenvelt is mentioned.[6] Another documentary mention dates back to 1333. Martinfeld was owned by the monastery of Herfeld, from there it passed to the landgraves of Hesse. In 1446 the brothers of Gerwigshusen were enfeoffed with the village.[7] In 1518 the noble family Bodungen bought Martinfeld from Wetzl Wolf. They settled there and in 1611 built Martinfeld Castle as their manor house. Directly next to it, a large estate (Vorderhof) was built in the centre of the village, which originated from a fortified fortification (Kemenate) as a predecessor of the old Bodungen estate. The fortified tower was later preserved during the construction of the church and continues to be used as a church tower today.[1]

In 1526 Martinfeld became Protestant, but with the Counter-Reformation Martinfeld got a Catholic priest again. During the Thirty Years’ War, Martinfeld was burned down by the Swedes in 1632, and Hans Christoph von Königsmarck’s troops plundered the village in 1647.[1] Martinfeld did not belong to the neighbouring offices of Gleichenstein or Bischofstein, but was a Bodungen court village. It is not known who held the higher jurisdiction, but there is a gallows mound east of the village.[8]

The village took an economic upswing in the late 17th century due to wool weaving. Half-timbered houses were built; in 1723 Martinfeld received the church St. Ursula.[7] The existence of a school is known from 1733. In 1840 it had a teacher and was attended by 67 boys and 56 girls. Two estates belonged to Martinfeld. In the second half of the 19th century tobacco was processed. During the First World War several floods and fires occurred. In 1928 the White Cross was erected in memory of those who died in the war.[1]

During the Nazi era, a labor service camp for women existed on the von Bodungen family estate. At the end of World War II, all bridges were blown up. Martinfeld was occupied first by the US Army and then by the Red Army.[1] The Martinfeld castle and estate were expropriated in 1945 in the course of the land reform[7] and in 1948 the estate was demolished.[9]

From 1976 Martinfeld belonged to the municipality of Ershausen. Since 1997 Martinfeld is a district of Schimberg.

Martinfeld has a kindergarten.[10]

In 2019, members of the Martinfelder Heimatverein erected a memorial stone in the local cemetery for the sons of the village who died and were missing during World War II.


  • Martinfeld Castle, a noble seat of a noble Thuringian family and today a youth meeting place for the Boy Scouts and a free youth hostel
  • St. Ursula and companions The Catholic church was completed in 1723. The stucco marble altar comes from the monastery of Beuren.[11]
  • several historical half-timbered houses in the village centre with a meadow

Places of interest in the surroundings

The mountainous and wooded surroundings of Martinfeld offer numerous opportunities for excursions:

  • Blue wonder at the Gleichenstein castle above Martinfeld
  • Martinfeld window at Schimberg with cross and resting place
  • Ibenkuppe above Ascherode
  • Lime-sinter springs in the Wagental
  • Klüschen Hagis pilgrimage site in the direction of Wachstedt
  • Thomas bridge in the Westerwald


Martinfeld has had a sports field since 1928 – with interruption. It was built by the DJK and used by the football team Rot-Weiß Martinfeld. During the Second World War the game was not played. After 1955 the pitch was enlarged. Rot-Weiß Martinfeld was the winner of the 2nd division in 1956. From the 1970s the area was used for agriculture. In 1989 the SV Martinfeld was founded.[12]
Martinfeld is the starting point and destination of the TOP hiking trail “Westerwald” and a stage destination of the nature park trail “Leine-Werra”. Both hiking trails are certified and awarded by the German Hiking Association.

Sons and daughters of Martinfeld

  • Karl Spitzenberg (1860-1944), forester, master of haymaking, inventor and pioneer of forestry root culture
  • Johannes Wolf (1879-1938), DNVP politician and Reichstag deputy
  • Richard von Bodungen (1857-1926), royal Prussian lieutenant general


  • Alfred Sonntag: Zur Geschichte der Gemeinde Martinfeld. Publisher: Heimatverein Martinfeld, 168 pages, Martinfeld 2018, without ISBN
  • Norbert Degenhard: Family book of the catholic parish Martinfeld (district Heiligenstadt), 1601 to 1875. Leipzig: AMF 2008 (= Mitteldeutsche Ortsfamilienbücher der AMF 11)
  • Council of the municipality (ed.): 925 years Martinfeld 1071-1996 – Festschrift. Eschwege 1996, p. 65, format A5.

Web links

Commons: Martinfeld– Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual references

  1. a b c d e f Historical development of the Martinfeld district (PDF; 1.2 MB). In: Katrin Wagenführ: The field names around Martinfeld, Bernterode and Kalteneber, Jena 2005, pp. 16-19
  2. Dr. Erhard Müller: The place names of the Heiligenstadt district. Heilbad Heiligenstadt 1989, page 10
  3. Paul Grimm and Wolfgang Timpel: The prehistoric and early historic fortifications of the district Worbis. In: Eichsfelder Heimathefte special edition, Worbis 1966, page 43
  4. Martinfeld on the page
  5. RI III,2,3 n. 581, in: Regesta Imperii Online, URI: [1] (Retrieved 23 August 2017)
  6. Dr. Erhard Müller: The place names of the Heiligenstadt district. Heilbad Heiligenstadt 1989, page 31
  7. a b c Martinfeld Castle(Memento of Originals march 4, 2016 on the Internet Archive) Info:The archive linkwas automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check original and archive link according to instructions and then remove this note.@1@2Template:Webachiv/IABot/ (PDF; 1.4 MB). In: Castles & Monasteries, p. 15
  8. Levin von Wintzingeroda-Knorr: Die Wüstungen des Eichsfeldes: Verzeichnis der Wüstungen, vorgeschichtlichen Wallburgen, Bergwerke, Gerichtsstätten und Warten innerhalb der landrätlichen Kreise Duderstadt, Heiligenstadt, Mühlhausen und Worbis. Göttingen (O. Hendel) 1903, page 428
  9. Volker Große, Gunter Römer: Verlorene Kulturstätten im Eichsfeld 1945 bis 1989 Eine Dokumentation. Eichsfeld Verlag, Heilbad Heiligenstadt, 2006, page 135
  10. Kindergarten Martinfeld in the Thuringian School Portal
  11. Georg Dehio (ed.): Handbuch der Deutschen Kunstdenkmäler , p. 229(Digitalisat)
  12. Chronicle(Memento of the Originals of 28 February 2011 in the Internet Archive) Info:The archive linkwas inserted automatically and not yet checked. Please check original and archive link according to instructions and then remove this note.@1@2Template:Webachiv/IABot/ of SV Martinfeld