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The Bangard's cabin

The vineyard represented an important source of income for the people of Thann. In the 15th century they decided to elect wardens to watch over the vines and the fields on their land.

These wardens were called « Banwarth » in German and « Bangert » in Alsatian; this term was “frenchified” to « bangard ».

Each year, 4 bangards were elected from the Middle Class on the basis of one per brotherhood. This duty was seen as an honour and one that was necessary if membership of the Town Council was desired

This institution existed for centuries, the names of all the bangards are known since 1483.

For a one year period their duty was to watch over Thann's, Vieux-Thann's and Leimbach's lands. They lived in a designated cabin in order to better fulfil their duties: watching over the land and the vineyards, looking after the paths and detecting forest fires. Tradition stated that they painted a bangard panel on wood or carved one in sandstone at the end of their mandate. 15 wood panels are currently kept in the Museum of the Friends of Thann and 27 sandstone panels and 1 earthenware one are still in the cabin. These show the names of the bangards, the emblems of their corporations as well as a summary of the main events which marked the year of their mandate.

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