The Turner in front of the Kernerhaus in Weinsberg - Adolf Cluss describes this scene in his memories to the first German Gymnastics Fest in Heilbronn, August 1 to 3, 1846


A few of printed memory cards and books were published while the Turnfest in Heilbronn 1846 - this one was made by Rudolf Flaigg


The Heilbronn Lithographers brothers Wolff published this souvenir, sold to the contributors to the "Turnfest" in Heilbronn


Adolf Cluss and the Gymnastics Fest in Heilbronn

Although it is true that Adolf Cluss had left Heilbronn, he came back to the city for the Heilbronn Gymnastics Fest in 1846. The elderly Cluss recalls the event in a letter to his niece, Sofie (de Millas), dated September 14, 1904:

In August 1846, the first German, (not Schwaebisch) Gymnastics Fest took place in Heilbronn. At the time I was the second architect in the office of the Hessian Ludwigs-Bahn in Mainz. It cheered me greatly that 28 Mainz gymnasts wanted to attend the fest.

My parents invited the whole group to stay at our house, and to treat our big house as if it were their own.

It happened that one of my Mainz friends, Germain Metternich, was a guest in Justinus Kerner's house. This made fertile ground for the slumbering enthusiasm for the still new poem "Wohlauf noch getrunken," and our suggestion was taken - an excursion to Weinsberg and the Weibertreue during the Fest was officially planned.

In front of Kerner's house, Germ. Mett. had organized a specially-built platform in tribute to the elderly poet. With great enthusiasm, two thousand young gymnasts' voices sang his "Wohlauf noch getrunken." The old man was completely overwhelmed by emotion. He collected himself and sent G.M. to his study to get the portrait of the poet, Nikolas Lenau, which he kept in his house. The great portrait was greeted by the visitors' high spirits and duly honored.

The young people and men from Mainz were surprised by the genuine Schwaebisch hospitality in our spacious home and, upon their return to the house, our Germain had to compose a poem, which was credited to our family in the new kind of color print and stately setting. I have carried this poem with me my whole life, because we were friends in our youth and so that he remains in my memory.

Wohlauf noch getrunken

 

 

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