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[*] posted on 9-26-2014 at 07:55 AM
Guttau, Saxony

Guttau -

Guttau - Wikipedia

From Meyers Orts:
Guttau, 3) government district office in Bautzen, rural community, on Loebau Creek; Saxony, county office, lower district court, and military district office is in Bautzen; 330 residents in 1910; post office, telegraph, telephone, and train station: Loebau-Radibor Line; civil registration office, Protestant parish church; creamery, cattle market. Including village and knight’s estate Guttau, train station 1 km, 306 residents in 1910; part of the village Neudoerfel, train station 3.5 km, 24 residents in 1910.

How did you get here, dear Guttau?
(For the 750 Year celebration in July 1972)
By Kurt Krahl
Translated by Katherine Richards

Dear listeners, we festively celebrate in these days the 750 year existence of our home town Guttau, and you all would like to hear this and that about its way to here. How do we know that Guttau is thought to be at least 750 years old? The answer is easy.

The first known original mention of Guttau occurred on 5 March 1222 in a latin document written in Göda, which was at that time the Bishop's seat. In this document the churches of Welentin (Wilthen), Neinkirgen (Neukirch), Solant (Sohland), Kumwaldow (Cunewalde), Gradis (Gröditz), Porsić (Purschwitz), Bukewicz (Hochkirch), Klukš (Klix) und Gutin provided administration in the years before the establishment of the cathedral capitol Bautzen. So Gutin was the name of our Guttau in the first documented mention, and the named churches were then except for Bautzen and Göda the only ones in the area of Bautzen.

About the origin of Guttau and its historical way up to the first mention in the year 1222, we cannot say anything with certainty, and also not much about the following centuries. This is because the documents covering it that might have been available were destroyed by wars, plundering, fires and other catastrophes, in particular the burning of the parish in the course of the attack on Bautzen on 21 May 1813.

Doubtless the ground of our Upper Lusatian homeland would have been settled thousands of years ago, although more in the southern part than the northern part. In witness, there are urns and burial grounds in and around the area, in particular near Burk; urns have also been found near Lömischau.

The historical ancestors of our homeland were Sorbs. The designation Wenden and also Winden is also historically grounded, but this comes from the Germans; the people themselves have never called themselves that. So where did these Sorbs come from? Answer: A small portion of the numerous, very strong people of the Slavs coming from the great cradle of civilization in the east in the 5th and 6th centuries A.D., settled the northern area between Weichsel and Nieder Elbe that in the course of migrations had been abandoned by its inhabitants. The first mention of the name Sorbs occurred, as far as is known, in the year 631 in the chronicle of the French historian Fredegar with the following text in Latin: "Also Dervanus, duke of the people of the Sorbs, who are descended from the Slavs, joined the reign of Samos."

These Sorbs divided themselves into two branches in the 6th century and turned towards the south. It was these Lusatians that stopped in the Lower Lusatia of today, and in addition the Milzener, who went farther, perhaps by following the course of the Spree, settled in the northern part of today’s Upper Lusatia. These Milzener are our historical ancestors!

The area was covered with thick forests of oak, beech, alder, and birch trees, in which all kinds of wild animals lived, maybe even bears and wolves. Doubtless they were also rich in water sources as well as fish. The Sorbs chose to locate near streams and bottom lands that were particularly good for farming and raising livestock. Old trees in the forest sheltered bees, so they could harvest honey as a welcome food source. The settlers would have quickly noticed the exceptional fertility of the corridors, as the larger part of the Guttau area as well as also the neighboring corridors are covered with loam, a gift left behind by the last ice age. Clearly, working the ground would have its difficulties, since in the beginning the Sorbs only had light wooden plows. It was the Germans who brought first iron and later steel plowing equipment.

Guttau would have been the center of the community, the clan that settled here, the location being named after the community family names. The Sorbian language researcher Jan Meschgang from Cannewitz in the district of Kamenz assumed this name was Guta. Pastor Mättig, who died in 1928, and the philologist Dr. Ernst Mucke on the other hand proposed Husćina as the first location name in the sense of "thicket". The later invading Germans may have altered it to the more easily pronounced Gutina.

Other researchers come to other conclusions. Who is right then? We'll never know! Guttau is known as the village with many names. As late as the year 1350, it was written Gutin; but soon, 1354, came the name Gude, 1416 Gutte, 1434 Gotta, 1445 Gotte, 1506 Gottaw. But in 1710 the H appeared on the beginning of the word; people wrote Huszen and Husćina, while on a map of the area around Bautzen in the year 1813 Gotta stood for Guttau.

The Sorbian names of the places around Guttau reach back to the time of the first settlement: Brezyna (Brösa) = birch, Hlina (Gleina) = place of prize loam, Bukojna (Buchwalde) = place of beech trees, Lomišow (Lömischau) has to do with flow location, with the root lamac, break or break off, and also through the old Sorbian word lemeš, the plowshare. Nowa wjeska (Neudörfel) came later. Wartha was written around 1331 as it is today, although also before that as Warte, Wache for later appearances; 1419 it was written Wartau, as well as Srölau. The old Sorbian Stróza, appearing the first time in 1719, was spoken for the German Wache. In the telling of the fortunes of peoples, the names of villages were of course seldom given. Consider the Milzener district, which its inhabitants called Gau Milsca, otherwise the Bautzner district, as it is usually used, although not always, also stands for Guttau.

For around 300 years the settlers would have lived in peace and quiet. The Sorbs were described by the history writers as hardworking, reliable farmers. But they were not brutal, which in those wild times a good many other peoples were. And so began, as in the year 919, Heinrich I rose to the throne as the first German king, from the mighty fort of Meißen (at that time Misni) the first attack against the Slavs between the Elbe and Oder, in the course of which the Slavs in Lusatia also struggled around the year 931 or 932. Thereafter they were only made to pay tribute. But the brutal duke Gero who was installed by Otto I, carried out the bloody and long overthrow of Lusatia, known then already as łuzića = swamp land.

With the colonization of Lusatia by the Germans, the good fortune of the Sorbian settlers was over. They, who as free men had been striding over the ancient earth, were now only dutiful tribute payers. Soon however, after the German knights of the king or the dukes had oppressed the villages, the now landless head workers would have to work from morning to evening for the landlords, who now owned the corridors. This was the beginning of the knight’s estates! In particular, it was reported about the duke Ekkehardt who ruled from 985 to 1002 that he "forced the Milzener from their customary freedom to service."

In the year 970 the Bautzner area was nailed onto the district of Meißen, that on the east side reached to Goreles (Görlitz) and whose border was formed by the Bober and Queiss. But already by 1002, the entire Milzener land was taken over through war by the Polish prince Boleslaw Chrobry. Now our neighborhood was ruled from Poland! The German king Heinrich II was able to win the land back, but only partially, at least the land that was Bautzen and the Bautzen area. Boleslaw effected his claim herewith, that it also was acknowledged in the peace of Bautzen on January 10, 1918. But pretty soon, after Boleslaw's death in the year 1025, the areas that were stolen could be freed, and his son Miseko had to give up the Milzener land in 1031 as well, that now belonged to Milsca, to whom Guttau also belonged.

But in the year 1076, King Heinrich IV gave the Bautzen land to his valuable ally in the Sachsen wars, the Bohemian king Wrastislaus, as a fief. With few exceptions, we were ruled by Bohemia for nearly 600 years, until 1655, when we became part of the principality and later kingdom of Saxony. I don't wish to bore you by reciting the details of the changes. For a while we were ruled from Prague, for a while Meißen, for a while in the power of the Brandenburger house of Anhalt. We also belonged generally more to Görlitz than to Bautzen. The division of the land in 1268 established that the west bank of the Löbau up to the mouth in the Spree at Lömischau went to Bautzen and the east bank to Görlitz. With respect to the church, Guttau went with Brösa and Gleina to Bautzen, Guttau and Lömischau zu Görlitz.

Not until 1815, when through the Vienna Treaty, when the north and western Upper Lusatia had to be turned over to the Prussians, did the remainder that stayed in Saxony become part of the district of Bautzen again. This reminds me to note that Lömischau has belonged to the parish of Klix since at least 1489!

For Upper Lusatia there came times of relative peace until the 14th century. But the first half of the fifteenth century was for our region distinguished by the invasion of the Hussites. A favor came to us, that Caspar von Luttitz, the lord of Guttau at that time, had to send 40 of his Guttauer subjects to Bautzen to help defend against the Hussite invasion. Upper Lusatia at that time was on the side of the Bohemian king Sigmund and had suffered heavily under the Hussite invasion. In 1429 Bautzen struck the Hussites with a rush incurring heavy casualties. The enemy leader, Molesto, was fatally wounded by 2 arrows. Because of this, the attackers apparently lost their courage, so they turned around, tried again two years later, this time a weaker attack, and were pushed back.

Another evil befell the Upper Lusations in 1432 and 1434 when a great flood overcame their corridors. How would Guttau especially in the water rich lowlands survive! In more recent times Guttau suffered heavily from floods in 1897 and 1926. The signpost at the inn which has now been removed, a beautiful granite column that showed the long abandoned way to Tauer (10 km), carried the high water marks from 1897!

Then came the rule of the hereditary Hungarian king Matthias Corvinius, who governed until his death in 1490. So for a change we were governed by Hungarians! There was even a knight from Guttau, who shared the Lusatian duchy crown, namely Caspar von Nostitz! The Corvinius monument over the entrance gate to Ortenburg is witness to the past Hungarian glory.

And now came the most awful of all the wars until then, the 30 year war (1618-1648), that made the German kingdom almost a desert and reduced the population from around 18 million to around 7 - 8 million. Never before had mankind experienced such shocking murder, burning, and robbery! Unfortunately Upper Lusatia stood right in the flash point of the war. Already in 1620, two years after the beginning of the war, Elector Georg von Sachsen took Bautzen, which was terribly damaged. Over 1500 houses burned either to the ground or were badly damaged. But also the entire Upper Lusatia was occupied by the Saxons. History is silent about the fate met by our farm villages including Guttau.

Twelve relatively peaceful years followed. But in 1632 the Bohemian commander Wallenstein took Upper Lusatia back from the Saxons, including Guttau which was on a critical, ancient road. This road went from Bautzen to Guttau and forked here. The less important branch went in the direction of Mücka-Niesky. The main street, however, went to Lömischau, Tauer, Creba, over the Nieße towards Priebus in Poland. It was also protected by the swamp dam at Radisch near Wartha. Wollenstein didn't get Bautzen yet; at this time he was stopped by the Saxons. The plague raged terribly in the land. In the next year, 1633, Wallenstein also took Bautzen, and then again a year later, 1634, the imperial colonel von der Goltz burned it down before giving it up to the besieging elector of Saxony. Needless to say, the entire territory of Bautzen was drawn into all the horrors of war. So sad, so sad, that our church records were burned in 1813; so much history we would have been able to read from them!

The Prague Peace of May 30, 1635 - only a preliminary peace, since the war soon flamed up again - gave the hereditary estate of Lusatia to the Saxon elector. From here on Guttau with the neighboring villages belonged undisputed to the principality and then later the kingdom of Saxony.

But still more war misery! In the spring of 1639 the Swedish General Torstensson occupied Upper Lusatia. The longer the war lasted, the more brutal the mercenaries in both camps became. But worst, the scattered or released rowdy fighters settled themselves in the countryside. Friedrich Engels wrote about that: "Mostly the farmers suffered, where the throw-offs from the large armies, the smaller irregulars, or far more often the freebooters operated on their own responsibility."

Like the larger part of Germany, also the larger part of Upper Lusatia was destroyed and depopulated. For many years after the peace treaty, the robber bands made up of released or deserting mercenaries roamed around in the forests. It was many years before our home recovered from the terrible wounds of the 30 year war. In addition, the Swedes came back to Saxony and finally left in 1650, two years after the peace agreement.

For a hundred years our home had peace, a relatively long time when we think that we poor Germans alone in this 20th century had to endure two terrible world wars. Also as the Prussian king Friedrich II was beaten bloody on October 14, 1758 near Hochkirch in the Seven Year War (1756-1763), after which he retreated with the remains of his army to a strong position on the Kreckwitzer Heights nearby, we Guttauer were the "staging area" so to speak.

But in the slaughter at Bautzen on the 20th and 21st of May 1813, Guttau was immediately drawn in, and in fact formed with the Russian allies of Prussia the right wing of the army from Prietitz and Gleina to Guttau (at that time Gotte). More exactly said, this right wing rested on the ponds between Brösa and Klix. Napoleon surprised the coalition, in that he appeared to be strongly attacking their left wing close to Mehltheuer. His plan was to press them against the Upper Lusatian chain of hills and surround them. And the French plan came within a hair of succeeding. Then on the second afternoon of battle, the French had taken the headquarters of the Russians on the Windmühlenberge near Gleina, then also taken the back of the Prussian general Blücher's position Preititz. The Prussians, however, took it back, but as Napoleon attacked the enemy center on the Kreckwitzer Heights and Preititz was lost again, the allied Prussian and Russian quickly got their head out of the noose, since the French General Ney with his imposing army was marching there from Königswartha. They rescued their army, by an orderly withdrawal along the entire front. The villages in the slaughter area had without a doubt suffered heavily through the events of the war and also through the robbery and plundering. Unfortunately, the Russians as they withdrew, also set Brösa and Guttau on fire in order to make it more difficult for the pursuers. Almost all of the houses still had straw roofs!

In Guttau the only remaining building was the inn owned by Petzold, which at that time was built of stone, and half of the free gardener food, later Kruschwitz, now Kranz. In Brösa only the house of Jurij Krizan, [Krizan is the name Zieschang, still common in Upper Lusatia today] located remote from the street, and the home of the householder Wotte, located at the end of the village towards Klix remained standing.

The Guttauer church, parish house and school were also turned to ashes.

The returning inhabitants of both villages returning in the evening found nothing but smoking ash heaps. The unlucky, their shelter, their cattle, the provisions, in fact everything they had, robbed, sought shelter in close by less damaged communities; a few built wooden huts for the summer.

For church, the hall at the inn served every other Sunday.

For school instruction, the dining room at the inn served until 1815. Then out of necessity a school building was built again, a miserable hut, of which there is still a hand carved picture. Finally in 1864 the school moved its home, which we still see in the middle of the area, and 50 years later, shortly before the beginning of the First World War, as most of us know, the fine new school was constructed. What a difference from the miserable hut of 1815! Yes, our ancestors from 1815 were bitterly poor, but those from 1914 were rich!

What a hard history and sorrowful way our little village has had to traverse, and not only Guttau! Our neighboring villages have hardly had it easier.

However there is still much to tell.

Flowers and Stones In and Around Guttau

And now we want to experience a bit of the past, and the present as well, of our little village in its place. Our guide will be our honored pastor Ernst Töpfer, who for over 25 years has faithfully served our congregation in Guttau.

Our path begins over there, where our beloved fellow citizens who have shared joy and sorrow with us, are bedded down for their last rest, at the cemetery by our little church.

When the first church in Guttau was built can, of course, no more be investigated; probably in the 11th or 12th century. Certainly it was built of clay with a smooth or straw roof, since stone building was unknown here at that time. The fact, however, that the Guttauer church was named alongside the eight others of the district of Bautzen in that document from the year 1222, allows us to conclude that Guttau along with the other villages had been there for a while. It was identified in the Bautzen district hometown book as belonging to the more important settlements of Bautzen's area. For over 200 years it also is one of the few locations in Upper Lusatia that has the right to hold cattle and goods markets twice a year. And even more: Guttau, more accurately said the governmental entity of Guttau, had the rights of the so called "under jurisdiction" until the year 1856! This means: The large justice jurisdictions - in our district these were Baruth and Neschwitz - had the character of small principalities. Above these lords was only the Duke of the Ortenburg in Bautzen. Since the lords could not rule their large areas alone, they set underlords over single central villages and gave them the lower justice ability, while they held on to the more important adjudications, meaning power over life and death of their underlings. That was also the right of kings, over all the land they ruled. In actuality it is known that Baruth and Neschwitz had the rights of the upper jurisdiction, as opposed to Guttau and doubtless also a few other underlords with the rights of the lower jurisdiction. Moreover, the judges of the area were not selected by the community, but persons familiar with the law appointed by the overlord. And now, this is very useful to know: The picture of Justitia the goddess of justice, who judges with a blindfold on her eyes, that is without seeing the person, was until 1933 in the Guttau seal! And it was a happy thought after that on our ceremonial medal.

When was Guttau among the neighboring towns won for Christianity? The industrious Guttau homeland researchers, that certainly includes Pastor Mättig, whose many congregation members still thankfully remember, wrote about this: "Already by the end of the 9th century, after the brothers Cyril and Methodius from Bulgaria had wandered through most of the Slavic territories and early proved as far as Görlitz, Konigshain and Jauernick, would also have made, through slavic missionaries, an attempt to convert the heathen nature festivals into Christian fests."

And it's true. We have in the Guttau corridor a stone cross on the fork in the road to Neudörfel; another similar cross stands on the Albrechtsbach close to Gleina. Both crosses are surely ancient, and many homeland researchers have puzzled over them. Pastor Mättig may well be right with his supposition, that on that place the first Christian missionaries might have preached and baptized. Particularly since at both places water was quit close.

The rebuilding of the church destroyed in the 1813 attack could only be thought about after 1816, after the individual huts of the inhabitants were at least minimally rebuilt, and even then only setting the tower and roof back on the remaining standing walls. There was neither seating nor an altar. In the gable of the church, three cannon balls from the attack are embedded and can still be seen today, to remind future populations. The bells were destroyed as well. The ironworks Boxberg had contributed an iron bell, that we can still see on the church ground, but thanks to relatively rich contributions from the poor population as well as the Guttau congregation as well as the parishes who had been less or not at all hit by the war, we could order three bronze bells to be poured by Master Friedrich Gruhl in Kleinwelka. This bell casting shop was at that time world famous; they delivered bells to England and Russia!

The bells of the rebuilt church survived the First World War with the exception of the smallest. On July 29, 1917 at the end it sounded for an entire hour. In any case they fulfilled their joyful purpose 101 years. And this was the second time our bells were lost through war!

Thanks to the freewill offerings of the members of the congregation, new bells could be ordered, that were this time poured by Franz Schilling and Sons in Apolda. The dedication was on 9 November 1920. These bells too, with the exception of the small one that the late farmer Handrick in Brösa donated, had to serve the cause of war. And it exposed the brutality and also the bad conscience of Hitler's conduct of the war, that every farewell ringing was forbidden, since the bells were taken away on 7 February 1942. So that's how our bells were lost through war for the third time!

Since 1964 we have a beautiful, melodic tone again. The small bell, that we were allowed to keep, carries the inscription "The Lord's word is eternal."

The middle sized bell, that the late inhabitant Friedrich Basche had given to the church, was acquired from the parish Ostrau, Leipzig District. It carried this beautiful inscription:

"I create the harmony to call the Christian choir to prayer.
I sound deaths, and carry prayers to the Lord above.
Acquired from the church building company and Society for Advice and Deeds in Ostrau."

And on the back side we can read these Words from the Book of Luke:
"The word of the Lord is truthful, and what he promises, he will certainly do."

And now to the large bell, whose history is not ordinary. It hung in the church tower at Neschwitz and also had to be given up. Before it arrived from the smelter, the war finally ended. A man who happened to know the bell saw it somewhere near Hamburg on a scrap metal dump and notified the congregation at Neschwitz, who upon their request got the bell back. We purchased it from them.

This bell is a splendid decorated piece, also poured by Master Gruhl in Kleinwelka. It carries the pour number 557 and is said to be one of his last works. The front side carries a relief picture of Dr. Martin Luther and these lines of his faith confident carrying hymn:
"A mighty fortress is our God,
a trusty shield and weapon."

The opposite side is decorated with the following lines from the "Song of the Bell" by the princely poet Friedrich von Schiller:
"High above the lower life on earth
Shall you be in the blue tent of heaven,
The neighbor of the clouds, suspended
And bordering on the world of the stars.
You shall be a voice from above,
Where the constellations brightly shine,
That praise our creator, changing
And guiding the garlanded year.

May the bells, after so much war sorrow, always bring us peace!

Now we still need to tell that the bell tower itself was found beside the church in 1813. It burned first and fell on the church setting it on fire. It pleases me to be able to tell you so much about the bells, dear listeners, since as most of you know, I was the bell ringer for eight years.

The sound of bells and the sound of the organ are siblings.

Our organ has also been renewed, since the old one had become quite fragile, so we bought a used, though still quite good organ at Rittmitz near Borna. It was not being used since the church was about to be torn down to make way for the building of the new town hall.

And now the following especially should be pointed out:

The renovation of the organ in Rittmitz was relatively easy to accomplish. But the renovation in Guttau, that was accomplished through our Pastor Töpfer and the Guttauer resident Hans Pietsch, out of thrift without the advice of an organ builder, was a technical and craftily outstanding accomplishment for them.

This organ was festively dedicated at the Thanksgiving service on 12 September 1971.

And now the following deserves to the pointed out:

The vacant position of organist was assumed in 1934 by the Guttau master blacksmith Hermann Schmidt. After his early death in the year 1951, his son, teacher and principal Helmut Schmidt, became organist, and after he moved away from Guttau, his sister Margarete assumed the post. For nearly four decades the musical family Schmidt has served the Guttau church as organists, and we hope that it continues so for a long, long time.

And now to the church tower clock: It was manufactured by tower clock maker Kieslich in Crostau and cost 600 M. This time keeper was also necessary, because who at that time was the lucky owner of a pocket watch? And how would the farmers in the field know the time without the ringing of the tower clock? This clock was from the inhabitant Hans Pietsch mentioned earlier, who had restored the new dial, respectfully maintained and as necessary repaired. If the clock was not quite exact or even stopped, we need not worry, though 124 years is an honorable age even for a tower clock.

The thankful congregation at Guttau erected a monument in the cemetery which was dedicated on May 18, 1924, to their sons who fell in the First World War. One can read and count the names! There are 36. We cannot however count the tears that flowed for the fallen fathers, sons, brothers, good comrades and friends, and never measure their pangs of death.

Not to speak of the Second World War! The wounds are still too fresh and still burn so much, for it to be appropriate to touch them!

May the earth weigh light on all the victims of the people murderous wars! We living have the duty to contribute our small part to the confirmation of the peace, following the reminder of our national hymn: "... so that never more shall a mother cry for her son!"

And now to the founders.

There is almost nothing known about the first German founders in Upper Lusatia. No surviving documents from the 10th century about the area around Bautzen have been preserved, and from the 11th and 12th centuries we know little about all of the Milsca region from written records. After the year 1000, as the wars between the Germans and Sorbs as well as between the Germans and Poles were over and the populations destiny was settled, people in the kingdoms of the eastern borders started to be more observant. The duke Hermann von Meißen sent further nobles into Upper Lusatia and invested them with Sorbian villages. In this way the German influence was promoted, so that the nobility was almost all German and the serving class was Sorbian.

Which German knight possessed Guttau is unknown. Maybe he was an ancestor of Johann von Rackel, who in the year 1331 granted the Guttau church a piece of land lying in Wartha, big enough so that enough taxes could be collected to support a farmer family. Considering the modest ability of the fields to produce we would assume that poorer land would require about 40 morgens and good land would require 30 morgens.

The first historic presumed lord of the manor of Guttau was a Christoff von Baudissin in 1416, and during 1431, 1435 and 1443 it was Caspar von Luttitz.

And now the Guttau lord of the manor comes into history.

According to the Lusatian Chronicles, in 1439 it was Caspar von Nostitz, who was the most active and energetic of the many following from this house that sat over the manor for nearly 200 years. He knew how to exercise a lot of influence, and he even counted with the king's power. So then, when Georg Podibrad was selected to be king of Bohemia, we belonged to Bohemia! Podibrad had no mercy for the lord of Guttau. Calmly he had to show him how through Caspar von Nostitz at Guttau, he could steal the entire Upper Lusatia, and with him, after chasing off the highest royal officials, invest himself with the office of official captain of Görlitz and Bautzen. He had also deployed a not inconsiderable force of troops, naturally at the expense of his subordinate supporters.

One of the great grandchildren of this Caspar von Nostitz is Georg von Nostitz, who died in 1579, whose relief image can be seen on the south wall of the church wall. Originally this was a grave plate. He and his pastor Matthäus managed to bring Luther's teachings to the chancel already in the year 1543; by contrast in neighboring Klix it came 70 years later. It was an act of thankful piety, that the grave stone of this Georg von Nostitz was placed on the church wall during the reconstruction of the church in 1816.

It often happened that foreign graphic artists would not be shy about making the trip to Guttau to see this memorial, which was regarded as a very good work for that time. Consider, it is 400 years old.

From the two sons of the memorialized Notitz, who became the masters of Guttau after the death of their father, who were named Georg and Christoph, George died early. He suffered a stab wound in 1594 that a peer in the neighborhood, Elias von Gersdorff from Buchwalde, had inflicted during an attack, a sign of the wildness and roughness that was also often seen even among the nobility.

A bad fortune awaited his brother Christoph also, who was then sole master of Guttau. Can with regard to his effect, he cannot be compared to his previously mentioned ancestors, as he was in the days and years, of the most unforeseen of sorrowful of times for the wellbeing and flow of our near and wider homeland, especially for those of the Lutheran faith, namely the 30 year war. This was very much his fate, when in the battle on Weißen Berge near Prague, 1620, the imperial troops, the Catholics, were victorious; he also met the anger of the enemy. Namely, thanks to the position that the emperor had put in place for him, advocacy eluded him and he shared the bad fortune that the counts Andreas von Schlick and another 26 evangelical nobles met; the group was brought to court on June 20, 1621 in Prague. They were severely fined. 20,000 Gulden fines must he and the emperor pay, which we can estimate, that a Gulden in the worth of gold was the worth of a ten mark gold piece before the war. Christoph died in 1640 in the confusion of the 30 year war, deeply in debt
This historical digression is inserted, since it is not about the fortunes of everyday Guttau citizens, and also not about the serfs, but rather about the nobility.

In the death year of this Christoph von Nostitz, a relative of his, Hans-Christoph von Nostitz from Bolbritz, gained our Guttau. After him, we find here as heir and overlord Christian von Ziegler and Klippenhausen. The coat of arms carved in stone over the main entrance of the church is that of the family Ziegler-Klipphausen.

In the 1830s, Guttau went over into the possession of the noble families of the von Dangitz. Already in 1830, a von Dangitz had bought the manor of Brösa, that had until then been owned by the aforementioned family Ziegler-Klipphausen.

And finally Guttau went over with Brösa, Gleina and the neighboring Wartha in the ownership of the princely family Schall-Riaucour, who held it until the land reform of 1946. I add here, that the counts Schall alone in the state of Bautzen held lands of 3433 hectors. On the other hand, by an account that followed in the 19th century, Guttau was determined to be only 2 farmers each with 2 houses, 17 businesses, and 18 householders.

Upper Lusatia was really the last territory of the German empire that in 1832, through the law of the Saxon land government, inheritability was ended in every way. But it wasn't until 7 years later, 1839, that the treaty on relief from manual labor and team labor finally came into effect, and a further 9 years later finally a treaty between the counts and the people of Guttau was established in which serfdom and compulsory labor was ended. But it will be noted, upon payment of a settlement! The law allowed those who didn't have the necessary cash up to 55 years to pay the settlement. Only five householders had been able to buy themselves free and didn't need to pay anymore.

We can see from the treaty that is stored at the archive at Ortenbury, that 16 of the 41 Guttau citizens at that time could not write their names, and had to sign with three crosses. It wasn't their fault. We recognize how little was done for educating the population back then. What a difference compared to today, where the little ones say to the grandpa who wants to help them with their school math homework, "Leave it to me, Grandpa, you don't understand anything about math!"

If we want to see more of Guttau, we can't be shy about the little bit of bother to climb up the 67 steps to the bell room of the church tower.

Looking towards the west we see the war ruins of the brewery and the houses and workshops of the earlier saw mill that also belonged to the lords. The saw mill, which was powered by water from the Löbau, stood at that time on the riverbed that is now dry. All the buildings belonging to the mill and the large amount of supplies and dry lumber fell victim to a fire in the Sunday night from July 31 to August 1 of 1911. A true rain of sparks fell over the village, that at time still had some straw roofed houses, and because of the sparks the church barn burned, in which four small farmer's grain harvest had been stored. Also at Neudorfel, about two kilometers away from the fire site, some oat sheaves were burned. 18 fire sprinklers were rushed here to this fire that could be seen from far away. Even the motor sprinkler from Bautzen was coming. In this moment however, a fire broke out in the hotel Goldner Engel [Golden Angel] in Bautzen, Goschwitzstraße, so the motor sprinkler had to stay in the town.

The night of fire has been recognized for a long time as a night of horrors. But compared to the fate of the innumerable towns and villages in the second world war, not to mention Dresden, where in the night of February 13th to 14th, 1945, through enemy bombers 35,000 people were slaughtered and half the city was left in ashes and ruins in a few hours, our Guttau fire night doesn't count, purely counts for nothing!

A new bed was dug for the water rich Albrechts Creek, that directly at Guttau's walls, joined the Löbau. (Footnote: This is the origin of the so called Dead Arm.) From that time, the earlier large amount of fish was unfortunately gone. Gone also is the rich supply of mushrooms in the Aue forest. Anyway, in the age of technology, beauty and the realm of nature is going backwards even in Guttau. The rare Blaurake has left our forests, and the wonderful ice bird, who like a glistening arrow shoots over the water, can only be seldom seen. He can't get food, since he lives on fish. Also what amused the village children so much, namely the many swallows, and in evenings the bats, has unfortunately very much diminished. The dear Klapperstörche [rattling storks] have remained true to the village, and also the sweet song of the nightingale can still from time to time be heard on delightful May evenings.

If we look from the church tower towards the east, we see at least partially the clay mine works that has become of great commercial importance for Guttau and the surrounding area. It employs more than 200 people. Around 1900, probably earlier, we knew that the earth on the east bank of the big pond contained clay. An entrepreneurial citizen of Guttau, master baker Johann Krahl who died in 1908, had some test bricks burned, however the planned construction of a brickyard came to nothing. The Kamenz firm Fabian & Reh obtained the mining rights for the clay and supplied it the Kamenz pottery manufacturer. The output was hauled at first to the train station and later Guttau. In 1917 the United Aluminum Works in Lauta obtained the business. After that, the clay mine in 1946 became nationalized and joined with the fire brick factory Frischauf in Dubrauke, and in 1951/52 came the building of the kilns near Neudorfel. Just in the last years, with well planned boring, the large size of the clay deposit has been determined to be the largest in the DDR.

Let's let our eyes drift to the view towards the north, where between the oaks and alders the most beautiful jewel of our home shimmers, the fishing pond. It covers a surface of 95 hectors and centuries ago was built to dry up the swamp lands.

On the north side of the pond is the zoological field station, the only one of its kind in the Bautzen state. It is the earlier bridge pub that was burned down in 1945 and in 1946/47 completely rebuilt. On top there was a dance hall. It was decided that it would be better to put the house to a better use that would make our home town widely known. In 1953 it came into operation; the station includes, besides rooms for the director and his assistants, workplaces and living quarters for 18 students. Biological courses are given here regularly, and in addition scientists work here on their thesis work.

And behind Lömischau and Wartha we see the mighty pine meadow that earlier enticed collectors with its richness in mushrooms as well as blue berry and cranberry patches. It is difficult to estimate how many thousands worth were taken out of the meadow annually by the collectors in what is very difficult work. Earlier the harvest went on Wednesdays and Sundays to Bautzen for the weekly market. In the old days it was of course on foot, with a hand cart. Beginning May 1, 1906, though, one could go from Guttau with the train. Before that, anyone who wanted to ride to Bautzen got on the post coach that rolled by every day, costs 80 pfennig, and could accommodate seven riders. Even bicycles, that these days are almost too many, were at that time scarce and riding on the rocky streets was not really practical.

The first postmaster in Guttau started on May 1, 1858. The delivery area was considerably larger than now until the end of the First World War. It reached north to Ruhethal. The first telephone came to Guttau in 1879.

Before we leave the church tower, let's cast our vision toward the Gliensberg. From its peak one can get a beautiful view of the fruitful fields south of Guttau, that is hidden from us in the tower by the magnificent oaks, birches and basswood trees of the Aue forest. From there one can see our beautiful capital city Bautzen, and additionally towards the east the previously mentioned Upper Lusatian hill chain crowned by Czorneboh. According to legend, this was during the heathen time the seat of the čorney boh, the black god of darkness. The chain hides from us the view of the bele boh, due south, the seat of the good, white god of light.

In the maps, the Gliensberg is shown as an iron mountain. As the now tree covered hollow on the south side bears witness, here at one time thousands and thousands of cart loads of basalt were taken, most recently even after the first world war. It served as street gravel. In the old times however they would bring the basalt with teams of horses to Boxberg, where there was an iron forge, where the basalt was used in smelting with iron ore. There was also an iron forge like this in Hoyerswerda, of course only so long as the iron ore was still brought up by the miners. And also in the times of the Boxberger, as a sign of the friendly relationship with the so hard hit Guttau, they in 1816 poured and gave the iron bell to our church.

And now another glance at our village street: It was with lined mighty ancient oaks, until they were knocked down in the winter of 1919/20. Also the two fine chestnut trees - one white and one red blooming - that flanked the turn off to the church, fell victim to the saws and ax. The street keeper Noack from Brösa bordered the entire village street from first to last house with the beautiful linden trees in 1920, that make us and especially the bees happy, but that now the very much grown traffic must avoid.

And now we turn over a new leaf, the second to last.

Perhaps even in the old days, after 1492 America, the nearly population-free new world, was discovered; citizens of Guttau may have migrated over there, although it doesn't seem likely. We have over there only a single place, and that is from newer times, 1854. From many villages of the Saxon and Prussian Upper Lusatia, 114 families with in total 564 people joined together and traveled through Hamburg and the English harbor Liverpool to America. They were Old Lutherans, who left the homeland on religious grounds. The emigrants founded a model settlement over there in the state of Texas, that they, as Sorbs gave their stem name, Serbin.

There was a child from Guttau along, Ernst August Mörbe, born on the 6th of August 1824 in the Guttau blacksmith shop, who emigrated with his wife, his three children and the house maid Caroline Donath. From Brösa there was a young woman, Maria Basche, 21 years old.

Even a widow from Lömischau had the courage, with her five children to go over the wide sea, Hanna Sonsel, 45 years old.

From Wartha there were 6 families, 40 persons.

Unfortunately the terrible cholera broke out among the travelers that took more than 70 persons as victim. The entire family of Johann Schatte from Klitten died within 8 days; father, mother and all three children. Our Guttau citizen Mörbe also lost two of his three children, although he was blessed with more children over there, and he came into property and respect. A great great grandchild of his, named Lilly Mörbe Caldwell, visited the home town and graves of her ancestors in Guttau three years ago. (Remark: She unfortunately was in a fatal accident, as she was next to her husband in the car when they drove into a high water crossing.)

And now a few words about the Sorbian language that unfortunately is seldom used these days!

It is quite astonishing how tough the Sorbs, despite all repression have held onto their mother language, with a necessary shrinking however approximately until the last century. And there, as we well know, since the Sorbs settled around the year 600, the Sorbian language has been heard in and around here for 1300 years. What loyalty to tradition is expressed by that, loyalty to the homeland of a people, who, since the military invasion of the Germans has never again had political self determination, with access to higher education requiring German, until nearly the present time it was out of the question, who in the states had to live in special areas, who in dealing with authorities was never allowed to use their native language! And despite all these named difficulties even in 1880, as a statistical study found, 95% of Guttau residents used Sorbian as their mother language! In the surrounding area it could not have been much different. One has to think, that the schools that were in the language area of the Sorbs in the 18th century apparently had the purpose of teaching the Sorbian children German. The Saxon school law of 1835 first finally required that the Sorbian children were allowed also to learn to read Sorbian and that in religious instruction the Sorbian language was allowed to be used.

But after 1900, the German language prevailed more and more. In Guttau there was at that time Choirmaster and school principal Hainick, many of us still thankfully remember, who instructed the beginning school children during the first two school years in German and Sorbian, since most school beginners simply didn't understand German; but from third school year on the instruction from the tutors was only in German.

And one single example is enough to show how quickly the Sorbian language retreated after 1900.

On 25 January 1900 the Guttau men's choral group was founded. Founder and first director was the aforementioned choirmaster Hainick. The Sorbian Guttau and Brösa men enjoyed singing, and not only them, one must concede, even in the hard times after the First World War.

From the beginning forward the singing group used a song book with only Sorbian songs. The lyrics were almost all by Pastor Handrij Zejler in Losa, the traditional poet of the Sorbs, born in 1804 in Salzenforst as the son of a householder and well digger, who died in Lohsa in 1872.

Zejler created and collected countless poems, songs, fables and other literary works and so became one of the founders of the Sorbian culture. I add, that he also in 1854 published the "Serbske Nowiny" (Sorbian Newspaper) that was printed by Šmoler in Bautzen and in 1937 was forbidden by Hitler. He is also the poet of the Sorbian national anthem "Rjana Łizica" (Schöne Lausitz - Beautiful Lusatia).

The melodies in the song book were from Korla August Kocor, born in 1822 in Berge near Großpostwitz, the son of a Sorbian householder and carpenter, died in 1904. A monument was erected in his honor in Berge. Kocor was a musically gifted man and doubtless the most important Sorbian composer of the 19th century.

Both, Zejler and Kocor, were sons of Sorbian serfs, who because of their talents were able to get a good education. Zejler had heard of the talented young Kocor who at that time was a teacher in Wartha, and invited him in 1844 to the church festival at Lohsa. A plaque in the school building in Wartha commemorates the blessing of the rich works of Kocor.

A happy and productive friendship developed between the two men. Their jointly composed songs delighted the Sorbian people who accepted and sang them. They were sung in spinning parlors, at dances and at folk festivals. Kocor founded in the same year a singing group of Sorbian teachers, with whom he one year later in the Marksmen's Hall in Bautzen gave the first singing concert in the Sorbian language.

In special honor of Zejler, whose 100th birthday is this year will be celebrated at this year's church congress. On the village plaza an unforgettable monument has been erected, and on his grave next to the church we hear the mighty sound of the "Rjana Luzica" and other of his works.

Now let's come back to the song book of the Guttau men's choir that we mentioned earlier: One can hardly believe that in 1925 when the group celebrated its 25th year anniversary, all Sorbian song books were gone, that they only used song books in the German language, and not a single Sorbian song was sung.

This one example stands for many. When we look for the cause of this surprisingly fast decline, we see step by step. The world has become smaller through modern traffic. First bicycle, then rail service, motor cycles, and autos opened the villages to the world and brought them more in contact with German speaking people. And then above all the First World War! For years in the army Sorbs heard only German commands, and also the comrades with whom the Sorbs associated, spoke mostly German.

Many, many Sorbs however were faithful to their folk customs and used the native language. They have been faithful even under Hitler, when the pious greeting of the Sorbs ("Pomhaj bóh!" (God help!)) was forbidden. And exactly at that time for all of us, that was the timely and correct greeting!

Since 1945, since the murderous National Socialism has been thrown to the ground, Sorbs have had the opportunity and also generous help through the government of the DDR, to care for their customs.

Whether one calls our little village Guttau or Huć ina, whether friends greet each other with "Good Day" or "Pomhaj bóh!" one thing will stay forever: the love for our small, special, but also so beloved home town.

This home, so dear, so beloved, in this hour we heartily salute!
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