Local History

Altdorf, Wilhelm Tell. Photo/Foto: TES.

Altdorf, Goethe, Gotthard, Suvorov and Tell

Altdorf is the economic, political and cultural centre of the canton of Uri and traditionally a gateway to the Gotthard Pass. It is also the town of William Tell (Wilhelm Tell), the legendary hero.

Altdorf is the town where popes, politicians, soldiers, pilgrims, craftsmen, artists and poets stopped to exchange horses, took a break, or stayed for the night.

Goethe (1749-1832) was several times in Altdorf (1775, 1779 and 1797) and informed Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805) about his impressions and experiences. Schiller then wrote about Wilhelm Tell in 1804.

The Russian general Alexander Suvorov (1730-1800) spent the night in Altdorf on 26 September 1799, including his army of 25 000 soldiers.

A monument and the Surovov trail commemorate this fateful event.

(Further information: (www.uri.info).