Peter Rosegger – follow in the footsteps of this local poet

Waldheimat: Birthplace, Waldschule (historic forest school) and country house

Immerse yourself in the wonderful ‘Waldheimat’ (‘forest home’) of Peter Rosegger and follow in his footsteps. In the region of Semmering-Waldheimat-Veitsch in Styria, you have the opportunity to rediscover the history of yesteryear and follow in the footsteps of this renowned local poet. Peter Rosegger was already revered even during his lifetime and is one of the best-known Styrian natives; his home and upbringing were important to him all his life. Peter Rosegger was born on 31 July 1843 at Kluppeneggerhof am Alpl, which is now a museum. He was the eldest of seven children. Today, the term ‘Waldheimat’ and the life of Peter Rosegger are almost inseparably intertwined and are known even beyond Austria. But how did all this actually come about? In 1877, Rosegger published his book Waldheimat, the first major collection of his childhood and youth memories of the Alpl. The work was a great success; one side effect of its publication was to make his immediate home famous throughout the German-speaking world, and the term ‘Waldheimat’ was subsequently also marked on maps. The poetic name of the area thus soon became a generally recognised regional designation. Until the end of his life, Peter Rosegger was connected with the ‘Waldheimat’ because it was much more than just a physical landscape. Rosegger once wrote: ‘The old forest house on the mountain fills more space in my head than the rest of the world. But this also includes the entire mountain, with all it entails. I assure you, it was a world in itself, and not one of the worst.’

To this day, Rosegger is appreciated by many people as a storyteller sharing his regional history and an observer of its simple rural lifestyle. His life and literary works cannot be separated from the historical developments that influenced them, from the middle of the 19th century until the First World War. The political zeitgeist was reflected in his works and in his life, especially since he was not only a writer and poet but also a critical journalist. Learn more about Peter Rosegger the social critic at the Rosegger Museum in Krieglach. His literary works are still relevant today. Gain your own insights into the fascinating life of Peter Rosegger by visiting the many excursion destinations in the region. Visit his Geburtshaus (birthplace) and the Waldschule (forest school) on the Alpl, the Rosegger Museum and the Rosegger Park in Krieglach – or go for a hike on one of the several Rosegger trails in the Waldheimat region.

Front view of the Kluppeneggerhof.Geburtshaus on the Alpl, © TV SWV, picture: Jakob Hiller

Peter Rosegger Geburtshaus on the Alpl

The Kluppeneggerhof is located on the Alpl in the market town of Krieglach. The ‘forest farmer boy’, as he called himself, spent the first 17 years of his life in his beloved Waldheimat (‘forest home’).

Exterior view of the Waldschule on the Alpl.The Waldschule, © TV SWV, picture: Harry Schiffer

Waldschule am Alpl

Through a fundraising campaign, the writer Peter Rosegger succeeded in building the Waldschule am Alpl in 1902 in an effort to counteract the ongoing rural exodus.

Exterior view of the Rosegger Museum including groundsRosegger Museum, © TV SWV, picture: Wirnsberger

Museum in Krieglach

The history of what is today the Rosegger Museum in Krieglach began in 1877, when Peter Rosegger commissioned the building of his country house according to his own plans and ideas.

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