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coat of arms Germany map
Coat of arms of the city of Rodalben
Map of Germany, position of the city of Rodalben highlighted

Coordinates: 49 ° 14 '  N , 7 ° 39'  E

Basic data
State : Rhineland-Palatinate
County : Southwest Palatinate
Association municipality : Rodalben
Height : 256 m above sea level NHN
Area : 15.69 km 2
Residents: 6711 (Dec. 31, 2019)
Population density : 428 inhabitants per km 2
Postal code : 66976
Area code : 06331
License plate : PS , ZW
Community key : 07 3 40 038
Association administration address: Am Rathaus 9
66976 Rodalben
Website :
City Mayor : Claus Schäfer
Location of the town of Rodalben in the district of Südwestpfalz
Darstein Dimbach (Pfalz) Hauenstein (Pfalz) Hinterweidenthal Lug (Pfalz) Schwanheim (Pfalz) Spirkelbach Spirkelbach Wilgartswiesen Wilgartswiesen Clausen Donsieders Leimen (Pfalz) Merzalben Münchweiler an der Rodalb Rodalben Bottenbach Eppenbrunn Hilst Kröppen Kröppen Lemberg (Pfalz) Obersimten Ruppertsweiler Schweix Trulben Vinningen Bobenthal Bruchweiler-Bärenbach Bundenthal Busenberg Dahn Erfweiler Erlenbach bei Dahn Fischbach bei Dahn Hirschthal (Pfalz) Ludwigswinkel Niederschlettenbach Nothweiler Rumbach Schindhard Schönau (Pfalz) Biedershausen Herschberg Hettenhausen (Pfalz) Knopp-Labach Krähenberg Obernheim-Kirchenarnbach Saalstadt Schauerberg Schmitshausen Wallhalben Weselberg Winterbach (Pfalz) Geiselberg Heltersberg Hermersberg Höheinöd Horbach (Pfalz) Schmalenberg Steinalben Waldfischbach-Burgalben Althornbach Battweiler Bechhofen (Pfalz) Contwig Dellfeld Dietrichingen Großbundenbach Großsteinhausen Hornbach Käshofen Kleinbundenbach Kleinsteinhausen Mauschbach Riedelberg Rosenkopf Walshausen Wiesbach (Pfalz) Höheischweiler Höhfröschen Maßweiler Nünschweiler Petersberg (Pfalz) Reifenberg Rieschweiler-Mühlbach Thaleischweiler-Fröschen Pirmasens Zweibrücken Saarland Saarland Frankreich Landkreis Südliche Weinstraße Kaiserslautern Landkreis Kaiserslautern Landkreis Kaiserslautern Landkreis Kusel Landau in der Pfalz Landkreis Bad Dürkheimmap
About this picture

Rodalben is a town in the Rhineland-Palatinate district of Südwestpfalz and the seat of the association of the same name . With almost 7,000 inhabitants, it is the largest municipality in the district. Rodalben is designated as a basic center according to state planning .



Rodalben is located in the central Palatinate Forest in its sub-area Graefensteiner Land . The city of Pirmasens , which is also the administrative seat of the district of Südwestpfalz, is five kilometers away. Rodalben also includes the residential areas Am Entenstein, Am Köpfel, Apostelmühle, Auf der Heide, Geißbühl, Germerstal, Grünbühl, Horbergsiedlung, Imsbachermühle, Langenbach, Lindersbach and Neuhof . Neighboring communities are - clockwise - Donsieders , Clausen , Münchweiler an der Rodalb , Pirmasens, Petersberg and Thaleischweiler-Fröschen .


In the north-west of the district, on the border with Donsieders, there is the 360-meter-high Bieberberg and in the northeast, the 388-meter-high Hilschberg and the 371-meter-high Kirchberg . In the far east of the district is the 313 meter high Hanauische Eck and in the west the 407 meter high Grünbühl .


The town is located in the Rodalb floodplain a few kilometers above the mouth of the small river in the Schwarzbach . The Dreiweiherbach forms the border to Clausen in places in the Ostne. In the middle of the settlement area, the former takes up the Langenbach from the left . In the south-west the Steinbach forms the boundary to Pirmasens; on the northwestern edge of the settlement of Rodalben it flows into the Rodalb.



Rodalben was probably founded as a settlement of the Celtic tribe of Mediomatrics and was later named after the river. The origin of the river name is not clearly established. The Celts referred to rivers and streams as alb . There are two explanations for the part of the name Rod , sometimes also Roth . On the one hand, the red sand of the river bed could be the name giver, on the other hand the fact that in the valleys through the clearing (rotting) of the forests, wide meadows and arable areas were created.

middle Ages

In 1237, in the Middle Ages , Rodalben was first mentioned in a document as Meyerhof . For centuries it was a rural settlement that belonged to the Counts of Leiningen together with Gräfenstein Castle near Merzalben . The first parish church in Rodalben was presumably built around 1360. The preserved Romanesque tower and the frescoed vaulted choir are evidence of this . The age can be roughly determined on the basis of the Gothic architectural style in its third and last period and the fact that Rodalben already had a pastor in 1360 and 1361 who paid a collation fee of 6  gros to Rome. However, more precise information about the construction of the church is not available.

Modern times

Center of Rodalben 1895
View of Rodalben in 1900

The place grew steadily and gained greater importance due to the relocation of the administration of the Graefenstein office to Rodalben. Rodalben received its first school around 1720. The Feine Häusel , which had been transported from Münchweiler to Rodalben and until then served as a parsonage, was converted into a school hall and a teacher's apartment. The house exists to the present day and is used as a residential building. Rodalben belonged to the margraviate of Baden until the end of the 18th century .

From 1798 to 1814, when the Palatinate was part of the French Republic (until 1804) and then part of the Napoleonic Empire , the place was incorporated into the canton of Pirmasens and was the seat of its own mairie , which also included Donsieders and Münchweiler. In 1815 the place Austria was added. Just one year later, Rodalben moved to the Kingdom of Bavaria . From 1818 the place was part of the Landkommissariat Pirmasens , which was converted into a district office in 1862.

The emerging industrialization did not stop at Rodalben either. The former shoemaker's trade became the shoe industry, which increasingly determined the image of rod albums. A tannery was established . After the Second World War, during the German economic miracle, the shoe industry developed well. At times there were over 60 shoe factories in the village with the family businesses.

In 1939 Rodalben was incorporated into the district of Pirmasens (from 1997 district of Südwestpfalz ) . After the Second World War , the municipality within the French occupation zone became part of the then newly formed state of Rhineland-Palatinate. In 1955 Petersberg , which had been part of Rodalben until then, became independent. On March 17, 1963, the community Rodalben received city rights. The worldwide opening of the markets had a negative effect on the wage-intensive shoe industry, so that one shoe factory after another had to close. Nevertheless, the shoe remained a trademark of this region, but now more through trade. In the course of the first Rhineland-Palatinate administrative reform , the 371-inhabitant town of Neuhof, which until then had belonged to Pirmasens, was moved to Rodalben. Three years later, Rodalben became the seat of the newly created association of the same name .


Population development

Before the Thirty Years War , 150 residents lived in the Graefenstein office. In 1680, around 30 years after the war, the office had 30 families or residents. In 1698 there were 50 families in the office, 20 of them in the village of Rodalben. In 1815 the place had a total of 1,391 inhabitants. In the 1950s the number rose to almost 6,000 inhabitants; this meant that every 100th inhabitant was a shoe manufacturer. In August 2004, 7,864 people lived in the city. Since then, as in the entire region, a decline has been observed. During the 2000s it fell below 7,500, now it is less than 7,000.


Jewish Cemetery

On October 31, 2014, 64.45 percent of the population were Catholic and 21.05 percent Protestant. The rest belonged to another religion or were non-denominational. The Catholics belong to the Diocese of Speyer , the Evangelicals to the Evangelical Church of the Palatinate (Protestant regional church) . In 1952, a so-called blood miracle allegedly occurred on site . Among the catholic houses of worship is the church of Sel. Bernhard , which is equipped with an organ made by Hugo Mayer Orgelbau from 1970.


There was also a Jewish community on site that once owned a synagogue . The Jewish cemetery was laid out in 1876.


City council

The city ​​council in Rodalben consists of 22 council members, who were elected in the local elections on May 26, 2019 in a personalized proportional representation, and the honorary city ​​mayor as chairman. By 2009, the city council had 24 council members.

town hall

The distribution of seats in the city council:

2019 7th 12 3 - - - 22 seats
2014 6th 9 1 - 3 3 22 seats
2009 5 9 1 1 3 3 22 seats
2004 4th 14th 1 - 3 3 24 seats
  • FWG = Free Voting Group Gräfenstein e. V.
  • WIR = Voting Association "WIR for Rodalben" e. V.


Claus Schäfer became mayor of Rodalben on August 22, 2019. In the runoff election on June 16, 2019, he was elected for five years with 55.03% of the vote, after none of the original four applicants had achieved a sufficient majority in the direct election on May 26, 2019. Schäfer's predecessor Wilhelm Matheis did not take up office again after 15 years.

coat of arms

Rodalben coat of arms
Blazon : "In blue a left-turned gold-armored, red-tongued silver griffin ."
Justification for the coat of arms: It was approved by the Ministry of the Interior in Koblenz in 1948 and, with the griffin, is a reminder of the former affiliation with Baden .



Cultural monuments

The Jewish cemetery is designated as a monument zone .

The beginnings of the Marienkirche date back to the Romanesque period around the eleventh and twelfth centuries. Today's appearance is late Gothic and has existed since the 14th century, the wall and ceiling paintings date from this time. The tower was raised in the 18th century and given a pointed helmet. The Catholic Church of St. Joseph is also a listed building. The doctor and hygienist of the same name was born in the Johann-Peter-Frank-Haus in 1745 . The Pfarrer-Dr.-Lederer-Haus also houses the Johann Peter Frank Museum . The waterworks is also a listed building.

Other structures

On May 15, 2009, a fountain system on Dr.-Johann-Peter-Frank-Platz in Hauptstrasse, created by the local visual artist Stephan Müller , was handed over to its destination. In addition, the Entenstein Castle was once located on the town's boundaries .

Nature and parks

Bruderfelsen natural monument

The east of the district lies in the Palatinate Forest Nature Park , which in turn belongs to the Palatinate Forest-Vosges du Nord Biosphere Reserve . With the bear rock and the brother rock, there are a total of two natural monuments on site . There are also numerous other rock formations on site. In the south of the city boundary is the bear cave and on the edge of the development the Schwallbornanlage.


The local soccer clubs FC Rodalben and SV Rodalben exist ; there is also the AC Rodalben , which offers weightlifting.


The so-called Brother Konrad Ride also takes place at the beginning of September . Two episodes of the TV show Auf Los geht's los , which ran from 1977 to 1986 , were recorded in the local TSR sports hall, one in 1978 and one in 1982.

regional customs

In Rodalben, the fool's call Rolau is cultivated during carnival .

Economy and Infrastructure


Cardboard factory in Rodalben

The shoe industry was once an important economic factor. The Servas shoe factory existed on site until 1970 , which then merged with the Zweibrücker Dorndorf shoe factory to form the Schuh-Union , before it was bought by Rieker in 2002 . The city's economy is now predominantly determined by tourism , after the industry had not particularly shaped the townscape. The surrounding landscape of the Palatinate Forest favored the development of the state-recognized tourist community . The local St. Elisabeth hospital was operated at times by the church health company Marienhaus .

In 1892, the Rodalbener Loan Fund Association eGmubH , later renamed several times, was founded on site, which merged into VR-Bank Südwestpfalz Pirmasens-Zweibrücken in 2016 . In addition, Rodalben is the seat of the OKTV Südwestpfalz television station and a ripple control system .


Rodalben station

Through a southern bypass, Rodalben is relieved of through traffic. The city ​​is connected to the Autobahn 62 , which runs from Pirmasens to Landstuhl , via the Thaleischweiler-Fröschen junction 6 km away . The federal highway 270 to von Pirmasens – Kaiserslautern is reached after four kilometers, the federal highway 10 from Pirmasens to Landau after five or eight kilometers. State roads 482 , which connect with Vinningen , Pirmasens and Donsieders, run through Rodalben itself in a north-south direction . The country road 497 leads in west east direction from the main road 270 until after Münchweiler Rodalb.

By Landau-Rohrbach railway Rodalben is connected to the regional rail network since the 1875th To the east of the development, the route passes the Neuhof tunnel . The station was dismantled to the stop in the 1980s. It is served by regional trains on the RB 55 line, which run between Landau and Pirmasens . Some of the facilities at the Pirmasens Nord railway junction are also located in the Rodalben district. The public transport system is in the transport association Rhein-Neckar integrated.



There is also a hut belonging to the Palatinate Forest Association , the Hilschberghaus, in the district of Rodalben ; The Hotel Zum Grünen Kranz is located in the settlement area .

The German Shoe Road , which leads through Rodalben, among other things, is now exclusively reminiscent of the former shoe industry . The Rodalber Felsenwanderweg winds its way along numerous rock structures from the Rotliegend region over a length of around 43 km around Rodalben. The tourist office organizes a hiking marathon on this route every year. In addition, the city is located on the Palatinate Forest Path and is the starting point for Tour 5 of the Palatinate Forest Mountain Bike Park . The Rodalben sculpture trail is part of the Rhineland-Palatinate sculpture trail .

There is also one that is marked with a green and yellow bar and that leads from Kirchheimbolanden to Hirschthal and two more, one of which is marked with a blue and white bar and another with a green bar.


Association municipality administration

As the seat of the association of the same name , Rodalben is home to its administration.

Educational institutions

In Rodalben there is a Realschule plus , which has been operating as such since the 2009/2010 school year and was previously a regional school , a vocational school, a primary school and an adult education center.

In addition, there is the Mühlkopf youth home , which is used as a closed home . In November 2003 it hit the headlines when a teacher was stabbed to death by two inmates.


Heike Jochum

The priest Stephan Lederer and the former city mayors Paul Durm and Alois Dauenhauer were named honorary citizens .

Well-known personalities who were born in Rodalben include Johann Peter Frank , who served as Napoleon's personal physician, the German-American game developer Ralph Baer , the journalist and architecture critic Dieter Bartetzko , the racing cyclist Hartmut Bölts , the soccer player Axel Roos , the legal scholar Heike Jochum and the game designer Stefan Stadler .

The builder Leonhard Jennewein lived on site for a while, the writer and reform pedagogue Leo Weismantel died in Rodalben. The Nazi politician Adalbert Wolpert was first mayor from 1927 to 1937. The painter Klaus Heinrich Keller lived in the city where his son, the musician Andreas Keller , grew up.


  • Vinzenz Bernhard, Walter Flammann, Wolfgang Kurz, Ferdinand Schlickel (eds.): 750 years of the Graefenstein region 1237–1987 . Pirmasens 1987, ISBN 3-926562-00-5 (with the story of Rodalben).

Web links

Commons : Rodalben  - collection of images

Individual evidence

  1. State Statistical Office of Rhineland-Palatinate - population status 2019, districts, communities, association communities ( help on this ).
  2. State Statistical Office Rhineland-Palatinate - regional data.
  3. State Statistical Office Rhineland-Palatinate (ed.): Official directory of the municipalities and parts of the municipality. Status: January 2018 [ Version 2020 is available. ] . S. 109 (PDF; 2.2 MB).
  4. On the history of the Verbandsgemeinde Rodalben ( Memento of the original from February 3, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. at (Verbandsgemeinde Rodalben).
  5. Official municipality directory 2006 ( Memento from December 22, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) (= State Statistical Office Rhineland-Palatinate [Hrsg.]: Statistical volumes . Volume 393 ). Bad Ems March 2006, p. 194 (PDF; 2.6 MB). Info: An up-to-date directory ( 2016 ) is available, but in the section "Territorial changes - Territorial administrative reform" it does not give any population figures.  
  6. Municipal statistics . In: KommWis. October 31, 2014, accessed November 30, 2014 .
  7. The Eucharistic Blood Miracle from Rodalben-1952. In: February 26, 2019, accessed March 27, 2019 .
  8. ^ The Regional Returning Officer Rhineland-Palatinate: Local elections 2019, city and municipal council elections.
  9. ^ The Regional Returning Officer Rhineland-Palatinate: Municipal elections 2014, city and municipal council elections.
  10. ^ The Regional Returning Officer Rhineland-Palatinate: Local elections 2009, city and municipal council elections.
  11. Hans Heinen: Rodalben: New Mayor conjures cohesion. Die Rheinpfalz, 23 August 2019, accessed on 4 April 2020 .
  12. ^ The Regional Returning Officer Rhineland-Palatinate: direct elections 2019. see Rodalben, Verbandsgemeinde, last line of results. Retrieved April 4, 2020 .
  13. Alessandra Schellnegger: City of Rodalben: Diana Matheis and Claus Schäfer go into the runoff election. Die Rheinpfalz, May 26, 2019, accessed on April 4, 2020 .
  14. ^ Karl Heinz Debus: The great book of arms of the Palatinate. Neustadt an der Weinstrasse 1988, ISBN 3-9801574-2-3 .