Haus Bürgel looks back on an exciting and eventful past. As early as the 1st century AD, Roman soldiers settled along the Rhine, the border to the Germanic tribes. When Frankish invasions from the area on the right bank of the Rhine became more frequent in the 4th century, the Romans built a chain of military forts on the river’s left bank. Haus Bürgel rests on the foundations of this fort, which boasted thick walls and twelve towers. Its foundations are still visible today. A Frankish castle complex was built on the ruins of the fort in the early Middle Ages.
1st century: First Roman settlement
4th century: Construction of a Roman auxiliary fort on the site of today’s Haus Bürgel
5th century onward: Frankish military facility, later manor house
Approx. 8th century: Construction of a church in the courtyard with Maternus as patron saint
1019: Archbishop Heribert of Cologne donates Haus Bürgel and the chapel to Deutz Abbey, first documented mention of Haus Bürgel as “Castrum In Burgela”
14th century: The Rhine changes its course. Haus Bürgel, originally built on the left bank of the Rhine, is now located on the right bank.
1698–1989: Estate owned and managed by the Counts of Nesselrode
1983: Haus Bürgel receives official archaeological monument status
1987: Haus Bürgel receives official architectural monument status
1989: Acquisition of Haus Bürgel and the surrounding areas by the North Rhine-Westphalia Foundation; founding of an association to look after the site: “IG Urdenbacher Kämpe – Haus Bürgel e. V.”
1990s: Restoration and archaeological research
2003: Opening of the Roman Museum
2007: Opening of additional museum rooms
2014: Completion of the Roman oven, archaeological excavations in the Maternus Chapel
2016: Visualization of foundations of Maternus Chapel in the courtyard of Haus Bürgel
2019: Foundation of the non-profit company “Gemeinnützige Haus Bürgel Betriebs gGmbH” and conversion of the former association into “Förderverein Haus Bürgel e. V.”
2020: UNESCO World Heritage List application
2021: Inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List as part of the Lower Germanic Limes
Learn more about the fascinating history of Haus Bürgel on a guided tour of the Roman Museum.