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The religious heritage

The church and the bell tower

In a document dated 898, a man called Hérimont donates Abbot Engelfried (from the Benedictine Abbey in Munster, in the Val St-Grégoire) all his goods in Thuringheim as well as a part of the church.

In the 2nd half of the 12th century, this building - of which little is known - was replaced by a Roman construction. About 2400 inhabitants in Turckheim made donations, allowing its construction. There were three altars : the high altar, St-James altar and St-John the Baptist altar decorated with sculptures and a tabernacle which no longer exist.

The bell tower - probably dated from 1190 - is the only part left of that period. The nave was used for seven centuries ; it was replaced between 1837 and 1839 by a construction in the neo-classical style.
Some Roman capitals, marks of the former roofing and a few intersecting ribs remind us of the former Roman construction.

Erected on a square plan, the bell tower shows the classical Lombard frieze. The part made of red quarry sandstone cut at right angles is ancient and the part made of roughcast is more recent.

In the chapel installed in the former bell tower were three life-size statues : Ste Marguerite with the dragoon, Ste Barbe with the chalice and Ste Catherine (or Ste Ursule, it is not sure), works by Mr. Braun, a burgher of Turckheim.
In 1661, the bell tower was heightened after being struck by lightning, and in 1736 it was repaired and surmounted by a "small cask topped by a weathercock, the whole of it covered with gold".

On June 24th, 1652, following the priest's order, the magistrate chose Ste Anne, the Virgin Mary's mother as the church's patron saint. This popular celebration takes place at the end of July, and the choice of Ste Anne (on July 26th) gave it back its original religious character. As the pilgrimage to the Trois Epis originated in 1491 had developed, Turckheim had to preserve its originality.

" Turckheim is located on the way to Saint-Jacques de Compostelle. The path enters the city through the Brand Gate. A meditation stone is on the precinct wall of the old presbytery. In Sainte-Anne's church, you can admire a beautiful paint of Saint-Jacques the Major. All along the council and high streets, until the exit through the Munster Gate, brass nails inserted in the paving stones map out the way of the Pilgrims."

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The Silbermann-Callinet-Kern organ

On November 3rd 1791, the organ was bought from the Cistercian abbey from Pairis ; it is a precious instrument because of its chest and its builder Silbermann.

When it was installed in Turckheim, it was enlarged with a swell by Callinet, an organ builder. When the church was on fire in the night of July 5th, 1978, it was greatly damaged, the choir organ was completely destroyed and was restored by the organ builder Kern in 1983. The original Silbermann organ chest could be restored and the choir organ preserved.

Today's instrument is therefore made of the great organ built by Silbermann, the swell by Callinet and the choir organ backing by Kern.

Calvaries, crosses, oratories et altars

All around Turckheim, these monuments, mostly humble, are all evidence of deep religious faith because they were built by pious hands.

But above all, they are part of our heritage, relating some historical events of our town ; they are kept in good repair thanks to voluntary teams eager to maintain them.

Thanks to their inventory, you can go on walking tours and discover them. Ask for information at the tourist office ... 

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To know more about the towns of the Wintzenheim canton, heritage, walks, nature, gourmet route See the video 

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In the page "military heritage" you can discover an interview of the curator of the Museum "Musée des conbats de la poche de Colmar" :