The Nordrach Doll and Toy Museum which was opened in 1991 is located near to the swimming pool, and is second in the statistics of the most visited museums in the Ortenau region with more than 100,000 visitors – just behind the Black Forest Open-air Museum in Gutach. In the colourfully painted, unique Doll Museum, more than 1,500 dolls and teddies, mostly crafted and collected by Gaby Sptizmüller, can be viewed. The Nordrach Doll and Toy Museum which was opened in 1991 is located near to the swimming pool, and is second in the statistics of the most visited museums in the Ortenau region with more than 100,000 visitors – just behind the Black Forest Open-air Museum in Gutach. In the colourfully painted, unique Doll Museum, more than 1,500 dolls and teddies, mostly crafted and collected by Gaby Sptizmüller, can be viewed. The Nordrach doll museum differs from the usual forms of exhibition, as the 31 showcases are thematically arranged. Village life is documented in a number of thematic areas: Black Forest wedding, village school class, children’s choir, Tyrolean ribbon dance (with 60 dirndl and lederhosen groups), chicken farm and agriculture in the four seasons. The raftsman dolls remind the visitor of an industry which was once flourishing in Nordrach, a "group of emigrants" recall the forced emigration to America which took place in 1851 and 1852. In another showcase, the clockwork of the tower clock of the lung sanatorium colony from 1898 is exhibited with clockmaker dolls. The hand puppets for the Punch and Judy show, doll dressmaking, cleaning, parish fair, baptismal procession and circus scene are also interesting. Particular works of art are the unique collector dolls which were produced by the artist Rolanda Heimer. With her baby dolls, the colourful world of types of people and races is demonstrated. Alongside award-winning exhibits, the collection is rounded off by exotic dolls from India and other faraway countries.
The doll and Toy Museum is open every day from 1st July until 15th September from 14:00 until 17:00, and on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays from 14:00 until 17:00, and from 14:00 until 16:30 in the winter. Open to groups at any time by agreement. Tel: 07838/636 or 1225 or 929921, Fax:07838/313.
Single visitor € 3,50 EUR
Children from 4 - 12 € 1,50 EUR
For holders of the spa card or Black Forest card € 3.00
For groups with more than 12 adults, the group rate of € 36 applies
Visit for groups from 12 adults possible at any requested time by agreement. This also applies for smaller groups, but a lump sum admission fee of € 36 applies.
Treasures worth seeing in the valley are the Maile-Gießler Mill (Maile-Gießler Mill) at the entrance to the village and the "Backofenschmiede" (Baking Oven Forge) at the head of the valley, both of which have been renovated by the local Black Forest Society in years of independent work and have been set up again to be operational. In both museums, demonstrations take place at times that are published in advance.
Maile-Gießler Mill: Maile-Gießler Mill: In the past, almost every farm in the Nordrach Valley had a mill; sometimes the mill was also used together with your neighbour, either privately or commercially. The mill standing at the entrance of the village, on the left of the brook, is more than 100 years old. The inscription on the mill “LK 1881” means that Leo Körnle built it in 1881. The grandfather of the current owner of the farm, known as “Maile-Gießler”, Johannes Maile, had the mill built by Leo Körnle for his private requirements. The father of “Maile-Gießler”, Wilhelm Gießler, also used the mill. Because the weir on the Schmezer estate was torn away by a flood in 1947 and – in the post-war period – could only be rebuilt badly, the mill was not used since 1947, whilst the weir was reconstructed in 1949. Thus, the mill worked faithfully from 1881 until 1947. After its renovation by the Black Forest Society, the mill, which is more than 100 years old, is presented with new lustre. The building that has been restored to its original condition – with a waterwheel and outside equipment – was thus rescued from complete decline, and gives subsequent generations valuable insights into the life of our ancestors. Approximately every four to six weeks, the grinding process inside the mill is explained. In the demonstrations, all the water power is directed to the waterwheel to begin with. Then, the mill’s machinery is slowly set in motion. Now the corn comes into the funnels, falls through the shaker into the millstones (two heavy sandstones), is ground there – and then reaches the flour crate, where it is sorted – into flour and bran. The flour is collected by the winch and flung towards a sieve. There, it falls into the flour trough. The coarser material -bran- comes through the “bran extractor” onto a sieve and is used for feeding pigs, as well as for the production of wholemeal bread.
The Black Forest Society has taken out a long-term lease on the "Backofenschmiede" with its waterwheel-operated bellows, along with all the equipment of a forge, and renovated it in a number of work assignments, so that it is now also functional. The name still recalls the time when Andreas Gmeiner set up the forge in the bakery, which stood in the same spot 100 years ago.
Under the expert instruction of the “master smith” Karl Oehler, the team managed to preserve this old forge in its original condition. The Backofenschmiede is not only equipped with its historic tools once again, but also furnished with other typical utensils. Thus, you can see the smith’s wheel in front of the forge, a pair of shoes at the bottom of the attic stairs, his notebooks on the workbench....., just as if the master smith (August Gmeiner) has just gone up into the house for lunch. In the demonstrations, you can frequently see a horse being shoed or a knife being created.