April 02, 2009

Guest of the Stauffenbergs

I am attending a conference of international activists in Rißtissen, a small village in Germany. The highlight of the conference was being hosted by the Stauffenberg family in their seventeenth century castle.

Schloss Rißtissen

The Stauffenbergs are an aristocratic Roman Catholic family from Swabia in Germany, whose best known member was Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg - the key figure in the 1944 "20 July plot" to assassinate Adolf Hitler. You can learn more about him in the movie Valkyrie featuring Tom Cruise.

The best part was that this place is a real antic heaven. The family kept this remotely located palace as a summer house and Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg also visited here several times. This house remains closed most of the time of the year. The porcelain in which we had our dinner had inscriptions - "Villeroy and Boch 1570". Googling it I found this:
Rouen V&BM, Made in Saar Basin 1570. This Villeroy & Boch mark dates this piece from 1885 to 1895.
There were warnings about handling the furniture and porcelain but I was extra cautious because I felt that these were precious pieces of antic.

Someone was joking whether ghosts live there. I am staying in a hotel in a nearby village. It might have be interesting to be able to live there to see whether there are ghosts for real.


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