Krucemburk (Kreuzberg) - Chotěboř (Chotieborsch)

Krucemburk (Kreuzberg) - Chotěboř (Chotieborsch)

The municipality of Krucemburk (561 metres above sea level and 1,600 inhabitants) can be found in the place where the protected landscape areas of the Iron Mountains and the Žďár Hills meet each other, a few kilometres from Ždírec. There are deep forests in the surroundings, the lake Řeka is a nice place for swimming and a nearby National Natural Reservation Ransko is as well worth visiting. North of Krucemburk, on the Veselý Hill a museum of folk architecture and technical monuments of the Vysočina Region was built.

Krucemburk was established by the German Knights Order in the 13th century. The Church of St. Nicholas has Romanesque foundations, later it was being rebuilt. In the middle of the 14th century Krucemburk was already mentioned as a little town. Later Krucemburk was given a right to hold annual markets. The 15th and the 16th century is a period of a big development – in the year 1590 the municipality got the silver seal. During the Thirty Years’ War the dynasty of Ditrichsteins became the owners of the domain. Krucembuk was however hit by the fires and together with a period of decline there was as well persecution of the non-Catholics. Towards the end of the 18th century a little town started to face more favourable times.

The Toleration Patent from 1781 brought a religious relief also to Krucemburk. A year later the oldest Augsburg confession congregation in Bohemia was founded here. At the beginning the worship meetings took place in a barn, similarly as in many congregations after their establishing during a post Toleration Patent period. During June 1786 the first wooden house of prayer was built. It started to deteriorate however very quickly. The believers in Krucemburk got their new house of prayer as late as in the year 1840. It was a typical toleration period building without a tower. The only difference was an entrance in the shorter side of a rectangular space of a building. The house of prayer kept its simplicity until now, only the interior was adjusted later. A building near the house of prayer was built for a purpose of a rectory. Later the building was adjusted for gathering and congregation job purposes.

The period of World War II was very hard for the municipality as well as for the congregation. Curator František Šešulka with a wife became victims of Nazism, a congregation preacher Bohumil Lopour was arrested and imprisoned at the end of the war. Ždírec and Krucemburk experienced another tragedy on the 9th of May 1945: a heavy air attack killed twenty people. This sad event is commemorated by a memorial by Vincenc Makovský. Among the artists who liked and always come back to Krucemburk we can mention a painter Jan Zrzavý. He is buried at the local Catholic cemetery and a memorial hall in a local municipal office reminds us of his life and work.

In the year 1945 Krucemburk was officially renamed to Křížová. Based on a referendum from 1993 the inhabitants decided to come back to the original name of their home.

In a beautiful valley of the river Doubravka near Chotěboř one of the recreational centres of the Evangelical Church of Czech Brethren (ECCB) was opened in 1971. The children from the Protestant families used to go for summer camps to the nice local cottages. Later the centre served families with children for holiday recreation. The cottages are being gradually adjusted. The children with a handicap come here regularly for recreation. Every year in a low season period there are recreational programmes for the seniors. This area offers a lot of possibilities for walks, common meetings as well as various hobby activities.