Get to know your Hahndorf!

Extract from Hahndorf Village Voice - Summer Edition 2010 Issue No.24

We may not have a yellowbrick road ……  but we do have plaques on State Heritage listed buildings along Main Street which tell the story of early settlers.

In 1988 small blue rectangular plaques were placed on many of the State Heritage listed buildings; however, over time some have vanished or been damaged.

So as to help you understand our story,  Hahndorf Community Association is seeking a grant to extend the number of plaques by 10.  (note: the grant was obtained and the additional plaques have now been installed).  During the summer holiday period start opposite Hereford Avenue and work your way along the street.  No. 102, Thiele Cottage and so on … or travel backwards!

NO clues from the editor … you, the family and visitors need to walk and locate each plaque.  Why not take the kids armed with pen and paper and make this a “Hunt the Historical Buildings”? There are lots to find!!

Original plaques affixed to historic buildings in 1988

The original plaques were installed by the Hahndorf Branch of the National Trust SA in 1988 and are easily recognized; they are dark blue with gold print and have the Hahndorf wagon at the top.

No 102 - Thiele's Cottage

   Built in 1845 by the first couple married in Hahndorf, JOHANN THIELE ( son of SAMUEL THIELE), and ANNA SCHMIDT.  A large gum tree under which they were married was felled to provide timber for the woodwork.

No 100 - Thiele's Shop

Built by pioneer SAMUEL THIELE, who arrived in 1839.  Originally a grocery and drapery shop, and later a florist shop.  The building has had additions built as each new Thiele was born.

No 98 - Old Mill

Built in the early 1850s as a steam-driven flour mill by F.T. Wittwer, one of the original settlers.  It was converted to a traditional Bavarian German restaurant in 1970.

No 96 - Old Workshop

This stone building, part of the HAHNDORF STEAM MILL, was originally a carpenter’s workshop and later a bark & bone mill.

Old Pear Tree

This old pear tree was planted in the 1850s.  The early German settlers believed that a pear tree planted near a well sweetened the water.

No 80 - Peach's Store (Est. 1898)

Original site of the ‘GERMAN ARMS’ now situated opposite.  It was operated by GOTTFRIED LUBASCH, an ex-sergeant, who fought at Waterloo.  After a fire in 1861, the “ARMS” was rebuilt across the road.

No 75 - Haebich's Cottage

Built by GEORGE HAEBICH, HAHNDORF’S FIRST BLACKSMITH after he arrived in 1846.  The half-timbered style is characteristic of German domestic architecture.  Stone rear section 1846, front section 1850.

No 74 - Sonnemann's Bakery Stables

Erected in the 1860s as stables for the adjacent bakery’s horses and vehicles, which supplied the Hills residents with bread for over 60 years.

No 73 - The Old Smithy

This building was erected in 1880 by AUGUST HAEBICH, who took over from his father in 1872.  Site of the FIRST BLACKSMITH SHOP in Hahndorf in 1846.

No 72 - Hahndorf Bakery

Established by F.H.SONNEMANN in 1858 and used as his corner shop and residence, it was the FIRST COMMERCIAL BAKERY in the Adelaide Hills.

No 72A - Sonnemann's Bakehouse

This building was SONNEMANN’S BAKEHOUSE and STAFF QUARTERS, est. 1858. The oven door is still in position and can be seen in the rear of the building.

No 69 - The German Arms

Originally on the site of the HAHNDORF GROCERY opposite, until it burnt down in the 1880s.  The present hotel was built here following the fire.

No 57 - Hahndorf Post Office

Established in 1864 on this site.  This building was erected in 1873, whilst A. VON DOUSSA was postmaster.  Extended in 1960.  Later modified to its present form.

No 51 - Haebich's Cottage

Built by the HABICH FAMILY in 1850s.  It is unusual in having an attic window and being built of brick rather than stone.

No 50 - Masonry

This building was erected by H.C.Bom, in 1860, with later modifications.  His daughter, Mrs. EY, HAHNDORF CHOIRMISTRESS & MUSIC TEACHER, lived here all her life until she was 96 years old.

No 47 - Jaensch Pioneer Home and Butcher Shop

Built by CHRISTIAN JAENSCH JNR. in stages soon after his arrival in 1839.  It was the first butcher shop in Hahndorf, an example of how business and residence were combined.  An early settler’s cottage stands at rear.

No 40 - Australian Arms

In 1853 GOTTLIEB SCHUETZE built and operated his public house here and named it the AUSTRALIAN ARMS, in contrast to the GERMAN ARMS down the road.  In 1863 the licence was transferred to new premises opposite.

No 36 - The Old Mortuary

One of the first stone buildings in the village built in the 1850’s and used by CARL RODERT for his undertaking business.

No 35 - Hahndorf Inn

The original hotel, the AUSTRALIAN ARMS was transferred from across the road to become the UNION HOTEL.  Built here in 1863 and later enlarged in the 1880s.

No 33 - Blacksmith Shop

Built by C. BORCHERS in 1870, who maintained a flourishing business here until 1900.

No 31 - Stables and Smokehouse

The main half of the building was established to house the hotel draught horses.  The other half was used as a smokehouse to cure meats and smallgoods.

No 29 - The Old Shoemaker's Shop

Built by CARL HUMPSCH, a shoemaker. Carl married the widow Diemel, whose first husband went to the Victorian goldfields in the early 1850s and was declared “deseased”.

No 27 - The Butcher's Shop

Built by H.G. Chapman, a butcher, at the end of World War I (1918/1920).  It was then considered to be a modern development from outside the village.

No 25 - Wheelwright's Residence

HEINRICH MARTIN had this house erected in 1885.  This building was part of the first general move to build stone houses in Hahndorf, a development highly praised in the local press.

No 20 - Rodert's House (c1847)

The original settlers stone cottage with central chimney, stand in the back yard.  Characteristic surviving example of EARLY FARM LAYOUT.

No 13 - Kaesler Bros.


(Please note that the Kaesler Bros. building has been demolished and replaced by the IGA Supermarket complex)

Additional Plaques added in 2010

New and replacement plaques were installed by the Hahndorf Community Association in 2010 and are of the same design as the original plaques.

No 68 - Hahndorf Academy

TRAUGOTT WILHELM BOEHM established The Academy in 1857 as Hahndorf’s first government supported primary school.  The building has been used mainly for academic purposes, although it became a hospital, a dental surgery and Council Office before the Vision and tenacity of Walter Wotzke enabled the current gallery to flourish.

No 35 - Hahndorf Inn

This hotel, constructed c 1860s by BENJAMIN GRAY as a single storey building, took over the license of the AUSTRALIAN ARMS across the street to commence trading as THE UNION HOTEL.  The second storey was added in 1880s.  The hotel was used as a meeting venue prior to the building of the HAHNDORF INSTITUTE in 1893.  The adjacent stone building was a successful blacksmithy.

No 69 - German Arms

The first licensed hotel in Hahndorf, The GERMAN ARMS, was originally built opposite this site.  The business was transferred to this two storey building by F.R HUNT in 1861.  During WW1, the hotel was subsequently named The Hahndorf Hotel, then Ambleside Hotel.  In 1976, the name reverted to the GERMAN ARMS

No 47 - Jaensch House

Built c1849 by schoolmaster GOTTLOB SEELAENDER and later sold to CHRISTIAN JAENSCH in 1856.  The Jaensch family was both prosperous and well regarded as members of the St Michael's Community.  Christian was one of the the trustees who assisted pioneers to purchase their land from W.H.DUTTON and others.  A butcher shop was later established in an end room of the building.

No 51 - Christoph's House and Shop

This typical two storey German building was constructed on land originally granted to JOSEPH REMFREY.  In 1861,watchmaker AUGUST CHRISTOPH purchased the land, and erected the shop.  The building went on to be used as a cobbler’s, as a dressmaking premises, Aunty Betty’s sweet shop, and later a café.

No 64 - Lutheran Day School

The LUTHERAN DAY SCHOOL was opened on this site in 1871, having moved from the 1839 Balhannah Road Church site.  Its use as a school was interrupted by WW1.  The building has been used variably as a drapery, an art gallery by WALTER WOTZKE in 1958 prior to his restoration of the Academy, as an Information Centre and as a retail outlet.

No 98 - Wittwer's Mill

Miller F.W WITTWER was the first landholder on 1839.  His son erected the first section of this building in 1854.  Further additions followed, housing the
quartz crushing equipment, gold saving machinery, wattle bark grinding for the tannery industry, fertilizer manufacturing and later flour making.

No 34 - Rodert's Cottage

This cottage, dated 1847, of “fachwerk”construction, was the residence of JOHANN WILLEMER, carpenter.  His daughter married JULIUS RODERT, a carpenter, who also constructed coffins.  It is Hahndorf’s earliest remaining example of this German building technique.  The adjacent shop , built after 1861, was known as the mortuary.

No 34 - Rodert's Mortuary

Built after 1861,this was one of the first stone buildings in Hahndorf.  The original shingles are retained under the iron roof, while loft and cellar also remain.  It is known by this name as coffins were built and stored here.

Sonnemann’s Jam Factory and Distillery. 

FRANZ SONNEMANN conducted a jam making business in the cellar of this building.  The family also established a successful bakery further along Main Street.

No 90 - Wotzke's Cottage

Allotted to G.ZILM, a brickmaker, built by HEINRICH JAHN, shoemaker c.1858, then sold to FRIEDRICH WOTZKE, dyer in 1880.  Grandson WALTER WOTZKE and his wife ELVA were instrumental in rescuing the Academy from demolition in 1966.  The cottage remained in the Wotzke family until 2009.