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Waltenheim (Municipality, Haut-Rhin, France)

Last modified: 2021-06-19 by ivan sache
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Flag of Waltenheim, current and former versions - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 1 March 2021

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Presentation of Waltenheim

The municipality of Waltenheim (524 inhabitants in 2018; 232 ha, therefore the smallest municipality in the department by its area; municipal website) is located between Mulhouse, Altkirch, and Basel.

Waltenheim (Walt's house) was first mentioned in 1265. The village belonged to the Seigneury of Landser until 1648, when it was incorporated to France with the rest of Alsace.
Waltenheim was famous for its vineyards, once exploited by the Swiss abbeys of St. Gallen and Einsiedeln; local wines were highly prized up to Luzern.
A noble family living in Basel indeed claimed sovereignty over Waltenheim. The first occurrence of the village's name, dated 1135, refers to Burcard of Waltenheim. Otto of Waltenheim signed, as a witness, a donation made in 1215 by Frederick, 1st count of Ferrette. Jean of Waltenheim was killed in 1454 in a tournament organized in Basel during the visit of Philip, duke of Burgundy.

Provost Joseph Jérôme Bian inaugurated on 1756 a cotton mill in Waltenheim. Stone quarries were active in Waltenheim in the 19th century.
In October 1939, during the building of the Maginot Line, a treasure composed of 45 golden coins was excavated. It was composed of coins minted in the 15th-16th centuries by the bishops of Frankfort, Cologne, Trier and Basel, and of a few older coins, such as golden guilders minted by German emperor Frederick the Handsome (1286-1330).

Ivan Sache, 19 October 2020

Flag of Waltenheim

The flag of Waltenheim (photo) is vertically divided blue-yellow with the municipal coat of arms, "Per pale or and azure two crescents addorsed countercolored", in the center. The former flag of Waltenheim (photo, photo, photo) was white, charged in the center with the municipal arms and a motto in Gothic letters on a white label put inside the shield, "Croire et croître" (To believe and grow).
The arms of Waltenheim, adopted in 1973 by the municipality, are those of the noble Waltenheim family. They appear on the seal of Hans of Waltenheim dated 1455 and in an armorial dated 1699 kept in the Basel Municipal Archives.
[Municipal website]

Olivier Touzeau, Pascal Vagnat & Ivan Sache, 1 March 2021