At the old Cowherds' Tower, piano and harmonium, tables and beds floated upwards on a hand-pulley block, disappearing through the window on the inside.
[from a newspaper report, October 1923]
Kuhhirtenturm (Cowherds' Tower) in Frankfurt-Sachsenhausen
From 1923 until 1927 Hindemith lived in the so-called Cowherds' Tower in the Frankfurt district of Sachsenhausen together with his wife, Gertrud, his mother and his sister. The four-floor tower is the last relict of a medieval fortification once equipped with nine towers on the south bank of the Main. It had remained unused and become derelict since the late 19th century.
In 1923 Hindemith received an offer from the city of Frankfurt to renovate the tower at his own expense and to use it as a flat. He obtained the necessary money – at the peak of the years of hyperinflation 1922/1923 – from a composition commission from the Viennese pianist Paul Wittgenstein, who paid the fee in dollars. Even after Hindemith moved to Berlin in 1927, the Cowherds' Tower, in which his mother and sister continued to live, remained a frequently used domicile for the composer.
Following its partial destruction in October 1943, the tower served as accommodation for bombed-out residents and refugees during the post-war years. From 1957 onwards, it belonged to the building complex of the newly constructed «House of Youth» and was used as a storage room. When it was no longer being used by the «House of Youth» and within the framework of the urban upgrading of the district of Sachsenhausen, the city of Frankfurt made the offer to the Hindemith Foundation to establish the renovated Cowherds' Tower as a memorial for the composer.
The year 2011 saw the opening of the «Hindemith Cabinet in the Cowherds' Tower», with exhibition rooms pertaining to the life and work of Hindemith as well as a music room for chamber concerts and events.
Hindemith Cabinet in the Cowherds' Tower
Große Rittergasse 118
60594 Frankfurt am Main
The exhibition concerning the life and work of Hindemith, presenting reproductions of numerous documents from the estate preserved in the Hindemith Institute in Frankfurt, leads visitors through the various life stations of the composer. The permanent exhibition is completed by a film as well as original exhibits including Hindemith's viola d’amore, a private photo album and his model railway. In addition, works of Hindemith interpreted by the composer himself can be heard at a media station.
Sunday, 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM, groups also possible on other days by previous appointment
3 € / reduced: 1.50 €. Free admission for children and young people up to 18 years
T.: +49 69 597 03 62