Monday, October 5, 2009

Field Trip to Saalburg

Last Friday Indy and I went with our local hs group on a field trip! This time we went up to Saalburg (about 10 minutes north of Frankfurt) to the reconstructed Roman fort. Kaiser Wilhelm II, when he wasn't ticking people off and starting wars, was very interested in the Roman history in Germany (and probably a few other countries) and had the fort reconstructed on the site of the original ruins. He did take a few liberties, though. The crenelations on the outer wall are too narrow for the Roman weapons, but Wilhelm thought they looked better slim, so slim they were built. The buildings that have been reconstructed are now used mostly to house artifacts found on the site. Just a little ways from the fort is the Roman Limes (LEE-mess) which was the northern border of the Roman Empire.

The entrance, with the Emperor Hadrian, who had the Limes and fort constructed. Apparently Hadrian really liked walls.

They have some interesting interactive things for people to do, like try on chain mail. I think it weighed about as much as Indy.

This was one of the highlights for Indy. It's an entire Roman Legion composed of Playmobil soldiers. Indy has quite a few Romans, but not quite a Legion.

The back gate.

This barracks room (the part behind the glass) housed 8 soldiers. Eight! See the bunk bed? Four on the top bunk, 4 on the bottom. Yikes!

To make the buildings look more "Roman" the army would cover the stone with limestone and whitewash, then use brown paint to make the brick lines. They did this to every building and the outer wall! They must have had a lot of time on their hands. You can see a small patch here on this building.

Here is an entire building done up to look "Roman."

Indy in the guest house outside the fort.

We had a lot of fun and learned a lot of interesting stuff about the Roman experience in Germany.

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