The Salt House, Frankfurt, c.1930


salt house frankfurt

The timber-framed Salzhaus (Salt House) was one of the finest late Gothic domestic buildings in Europe. It stood in the centre of Frankfurt and dated back to the early 14th century. The Salt House was originally used as a meeting place for merchants who traded in salt but the property was almost completely rebuilt c.1595 by Christoph Andreas Koler, an exceptionally wealthy wine merchant. The front facade was covered in elaborately carved relief panels depicting figures, vines and scrolls. The side wall was decorated with frescos of Biblical and mythological scences. The Salt House was restored at the end of the 19th century but was subsequently destroyed during an air-raid on 22 March 1944 and only the stone ground floor survived. The carved panels from the facade were removed in 1943. The house to the left of the Salt House was the Haus Frauenstein, built at the end of the 15th century. It too was lost in 1944 along with around 2000 other late Gothic and Renaissance houses in Frankurt’s city centre.


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