Baden, Altstadt. Foto/Photo: TES.

Baden or Aquae Helveticae

Baden was known as Aquae Helveticae in Roman times. The settlement was already a spa town in those days. Around 850, a Carolingian church was built on today’s Catholic church site.

Stein Castle was built by the counts of Nellenburg in the 11th century. They were succeeded by the counts of Lenzburg and, in the 13th century, by the Habsburgs.

The wooden bridge was built in the 13th century. Baden received city rights under Habsburg rule. In 1415 Baden was occupied and became Untertanengebiet of the Swiss Confederation of eight cantons. The Castle was destroyed.

The Bernerhaus (1678), until 1798 the residence of the Tagsatzung representatives of Bern

The sovereign cantons met with their representatives in the Tagsatzung in Baden to discuss matters of common interest, including the administration of Aargau.

Rathausgasse and the town hall 

The council chamber on the first floor of the town hall served as a meeting hall until 1712. This building on the Rathausgasse was first mentioned in 1368. Around 1500, each of the ten members of the Confederation donated an image of their coat of arms (Basel and Schaffhausen became members in 1501, Appenzeller in 1513).

In 1714, the third and last peace congress of the War of the Spanish Succession took place in Baden. During the five-month negotiations, more than 60 delegations from Europe stayed in Baden.

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After establishing the new Swiss Confederation in 1815, Baden began to prosper again. The spas were renewed and modernised, and gigantic hotels were built, including the Grand Hotel (demolished in 1944), Verenahof, Ochsen and Bären.

From the middle of the 19th century, industrialisation also began, especially with the founding of the Brown Boveri & Cie company in 1891, today’s multinational ABB. This company introduced electric lighting in Switzerland.

In 1847, Baden was the terminus of the first Swiss railway line Zurich-Baden (Spanischbrödlibahn).

Railway station around 1900. Stadtarchiv 

The Lambrecht-Wettersäule