The defense barracks, the garrison hospital, the provisions store, the army bakery, Fort C and the train station - they are all evidence of the Prussian era.
After the Peace of Westphalia in 1648, Minden became a Brandenburg-Prussian administrative, fortress and garrison town. Up until 1873, the ramparts that had been expanded secured the province of Westphalia against the Kingdom of Hannover.
As a city on the river, Minden was a preferred settlement that always had to be defended against external enemies. On the other hand, devastating fires were a danger due to the close development within the fortress walls. Against these threats, citizens were called up for military service - the forerunners of the later Minden citizen battalion.
Thanks to the commitment of the entrepreneur Franz Lax, the district of the train station has become a role model of the Prussian era in the 19th century. Today you can still admire the oldest water tower in Westphalia at the “Laxburg” and smile at the anecdotes from Franz Lax and his family. Take part in our guided tour in the "Mindener Bahnhofsviertel" and find out more.
You can also follow the traces of this time in the Prussian Museum. There you can learn more about the Prussian history on 1,500 square meters using numerous originals, elaborate productions and modern exhibition media. You will find the museum in the former defense barracks, one of the earliest representative large-scale military buildings that still shape the cityscape of Minden today.
Tip: Visit Minden when the "Freischießen" takes place! In the 17th century, the Minden city council decided at a festive event to identify the best shooter and exempt him from the tax for a year: the term "Freischießen" was coined. The Minden Citizens Battalion still maintains this tradition today during a festival lasting several days, which is very popular with citizens and guests.