Schwäbisch Hall (Baden-Württemberg, Germany)

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Schwäbisch Hall (or Hall for short), a city (pop. 15,165 in 1956; pop. 36,665 in 2006) of Württemberg, Germany, 35 miles (57 km) northeast of Stuttgart, charmingly situated on the Kocher, with its splendid church of St. Michael. Until 1504 Hall was ecclesiastically a subsidiary of Steinbach, which belonged to the Komburg monastery, but it had an independent right in the preaching office, to which Johannes Brenz was called in 1523. Together with his friend Johann Isenmann, who was called to the pastorate in 1524, Brenz effected the Reformation in the city. Judging from the funeral address of Bidembach, the Anabaptists in the region of Hall caused them some concern. But the only one known by name is Melchior Hoffman, who worked for the Anabaptist movement from Livland, Kiel, and East Friesland to Strasbourg and there died in prison. The council of Hall issued a mandate to warn its subjects of the leaven of the Anabaptists; this was surely done at Brenz's instigation. In 1530 Hall could venture to write to the emperor that with true diligence and God's aid they had averted the Anabaptist sect (Hortmann und Jäger, I, 290).

The statement made by the Chronicler Herolt that in 1534 many peasants with their families, who had been Anabaptist adherents, had immigrated to Moravia in the hope that they might there become better Christians (Württembergische Geschichtsquellen I, 255) evidently had reference to those who came into the Rhine region from the Palatinate, concerning whose migration Kirchberg reports (see Hohenlohe), rather than to peasants of Hall. The isolated case of Katherine Hoffmann of Reinsberg as an Anabaptist is mentioned in 1555 (Gmelin, Hallische Geschichte, 736). Her kinship with Melchior Hoffman, which Gmelin assumes, is very unlikely. On the other hand, there are indications that the Hutterian Brethren sent men into the Hall region to gain adherents for their brotherhood. The Geschichts-Bücher records on p. 235, "In this year Brother Paul Schuester, a preacher, fell asleep with a peaceful heart in the district of Hall." Paul Shuster (Shuester) had been chosen to the ministry in 1551. There is no information concerning later Anabaptists in the district. It is very likely that there were none.


Bossert, Gustav. "Aus der nebenkirchlichen-religions Bewegung der Reformation Zeit in Württemberg (Wiedertäufer und Schwenckfelder)." Blätter  für Württemberger Kirchengeschichte (1929): 1-41.

Gmelin, Julius. Hällische Geschichte : Geschichte der Reichsstadt Hall und ihres Gebiets nebst einem Ueberblick über die Nachbargebiete. Stuttgart: W. Kohlham, 1898: 735 ff.  

Hartmann J. and K. Jäger. Johannes Brenz. Hamburg, 1840: I, 290.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 236.

Schornbaum, Karl. Quellen zur Geschichte der Wiedertäufer II. Band, Markgraftum Brandenburg. (Bayern I. Abteilung). Leipzig: M. Heinsius Nachfolger, 1934.

Author(s) Gustav, Jr Bossert
Date Published 1956

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MLA style

Bossert, Gustav, Jr. "Schwäbisch Hall (Baden-Württemberg, Germany)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 21 Aug 2018.,_Germany)&oldid=145732.

APA style

Bossert, Gustav, Jr. (1956). Schwäbisch Hall (Baden-Württemberg, Germany). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 August 2018, from,_Germany)&oldid=145732.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 635. All rights reserved.

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