House of Hesse Archive

The existence of palace library owes much to the restoration of the former summer palace of the Prince-Bishops of Fulda in the 1950s. Thanks to the commitment of Philipp Landgrave of Hesse, the head of the family at the time, Schloss Fasanerie became the collection point for the cultural heritage of the House of Hesse dynasty. This included not only art collections that were now accessible to the public at the museum and the family archive, but also the private libraries of the members of the family who resided in the palaces Philippsruhe, Rumpenheim, Panker and Wolfsgarten. They were systematically combined in the south wing of Schloss Fasanerie.

The library is open to anyone researching the cultural heritage and family history of the House of Hesse. Interest must be registered in advance and the books and documents may be consulted on site only.

All of the family's written records belong to the archive. Together with the files of the landgraviate's bailiff's office (from around 1820 onwards), all documents belonging to the family foundation, which was founded in 1928, and the records of the earldom of Hessenstein, they make up the House of Hesse Archive. The family archive consists of all written records since the time of Landgrave Frederick of Hesse-Kassel (1747-1837) and those of his descendants over six generations up to the present. Also included are documents of regal provenance, such as the memoirs of Elector William I (1743-1821).

Another archive element is the entire correspondence of Victoria, Empress Frederick (1840-1901), which she left to her youngest daughter, Landgravine Margarethe of Hesse (1872-1954), together with the home the Empress lived in during her dowager days, Schloss Friedrichshof.

The store of written documents is completed by an extensive collection of historic portrait prints, sketches, cards and photographs. The family archive may be used for research purposes, provided a written application is submitted to the foundation's Executive Committee for approval.


House of Hesse Cultural Foundation
House of Hesse Archive
Schloss Fasanerie
36124 Eichenzell
Phone: +49 661 94 86 - 15

  • Fabian, Bernhard (Hrsg.): Handbuch der historischen Buchbestände in Deutschland, Band 5. Hildesheim 1992
  • Franz, Eckhart G.: Archive in Hessen. Kurzführer. Darmstadt 1996
  • Werner/ Schöwerling, Rainer (Hrsg.): Maria, Landgräfin von Hessen (1723-1772). Eine englische Prinzessin am Hessischen Fürstenhof und ihre Bibliothek. Sonderdruck aus: Corvey-Journal, H. 2, 1990.
  • Klössel, Christine: Aus dem Archiv der Hessischen Hausstiftung auf Schloss Fasanerie; in: Das kulturelle Erbe des Hauses Hessen. Quellen und Forschungen zur hessischen Geschichte 128, hrsg. v. Eckhart G. Franz u. Hans-Peter Lachmann, Darmstadt 2002.
Illustrations1. Family occasion at Schloss Friedrichshof (1900)
2. The coat of arms of the Landgraves of Hesse, designed by heraldic artist Otto Hupp (1859-1949)
3. Letters left by Victoria, Princess Royal (1840-1901)
4. Library of Landgravine Marie of Hesse (1723-1772) at Schloss Fasanerie museum