AMORBACH, BAVARIA, GERMANY
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It was recorded that Lorenz Förtig, Sr. was a tenant of the monastery farm in Amorbach, Bavaria, Germany (Bayern, Deutschland).  Three generations of his descendents also lived on the same monastery farm in Amorbach.
 
Amorbach is located approximately four miles south of Miltenberg in the district of Miltenberg, province of Unterfranken, in the northwestern corner of the state of Bavaria. The town is located in the Mudau valley, tributary to the Main River in the beautiful Odenwald Mountains. The surrounding landscape is primarily forested with coniferous woodlands on steep mountainous terrain with rolling pastures in the valleys and on the ridges.  Amorbach is located at an approximate elevation of 510 feet.  The adjacent rugged mountains rise up to approximately 1,590 feet for a total height of 1,080 feet above the valley.
 
The word Amorbach is translated as "Brook of Love" in the English language1.  Currently, the town is comprised of approximately 4,700 inhabitants1.
 
In the early eighth century, Count Ruthard directed Saint Pirmin to travel to what is now the Amorbach area in order to preach the Good News of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ2.  Saint Pirmin along with his disciple Saint Amor originally resided at what is now called Amorsbrunn, at the northwestern corner of Amorbach.  They later constructed a Benedictine monastery in the neighboring Mudau valley2.  The monastery was consecrated in 734 and became the main center of civilization and the Christian faith in the Odenwald forest2.  The town of Amorbach expanded around the monastery2.  The monks successfully penetrated into northern Germany and preached the Gospel of grace unto the Saxons2.
 
Amorbach suffered greatly in the tenth century from the invasion of the Huns and in 1521 during the Peasants' War and also in 1631 from the Swedes2.  Many of the original buildings of Amorbach were damaged or destroyed during the various invasions of the city2.  In the seventeenth century, the monastery buildings and the church were reconstructed2
 
The Benedictine monastery located in Amorbach was founded over 1200 years ago1.  In addition, the town of Amorbach has over 800 years of historical documentation1.  The following is a summary of the major historical events of Amorbach:1
Year       Event
734        Establishment of the Benedictine monastery by Saint Pirmin.1
1170      Establishment of a nun monastery on the Gotthardsberg (God hard mountain).1
1197      First documented mention of Amorbach under the name Amarbach.1
1253      The monastery is moved from Konrad von Dürn to the city.1
1272      Amorbach falls to the rule of the Archbishop of Mainz.1,2
1291      Building of the Templerhauses (Templer-house).  One of the oldest timber buildings in Germany.1
1448      Building of the monastery mill, today known as the Schlossmühle (lock mill).1
1475      Building of the Stadthauses (city hall).1
1478      Building of the Alten Rathauses (Old town hall).1
1482-85 Building of the Amtskellerei (Office wine cellar).1
1488      Building of the Zehntscheuer (Tenth-scrub).1
1631-34 Swedes conquer and rule during the 30 Years War.1
1660      Establishment of the Abbey buildings.1
1675      Establishment of the Mariensäule (market place).1
1683      Establishment of the Debonhause (Debon building) behind the Mariensäule.1
1724-27 Building of the Oberamtshauses (upper authority building).1
1742-47 Reconstruction of the Abtai Kirche (Abbey Church) of Saint Maria.1
1751-53 Building of the St. Gangolf parish church.1
1774-82 Building of the mute organ in the Abtai Kirche.1
1783-86 Establishment of the Konventbau (convent).1
1803      Protestant Prince of Leiningen seizes control.1,2
1806      Amorbach falls to the Grand Duchy of Baden.1
1810      Amorbach becomes Hessisch (Hessian).1
1816      Amorbach becomes Bayerisch (Bavarian).1
1880      Connection to the Eisenbahnnetz.1
Several generations of the Förtig family lived on the monastery farm in Amorbach.  Georg Förtig, the great grandson of Lorenz Förtig, Sr. was born on the monastery farm and later relocated to the neighboring village of Watterbach.  Watterbach is located approximately four miles west of Amorbach.  The surrounding terrain is comprised of rolling farm land with mountains forested with a mixture of coniferous and deciduous trees.  Watterbach is located at an approximate elevation of 850 feet.  The adjacent mountains rise up to approximately 1,715 feet for a total height of 865 feet above the Waldbach valley.
 
The descendents of Georg Förtig attended the Catholic chapel in Watterbach, which was part of the Catholic parish of Kirchzell.  Watterbach was first mentioned in 1395 in association with the Amorbach monastery and is a local municipality of Kirchzell3.  It is a small farming village with currently only 160 inhabitants3.  Watterbach is nested into the high rising forested mountains3.  The front of the chapel building is decorated with a plaque of Saint Sebastian3
 
REFERENCES:
1. History of Amorbach.
http://www.amorbach.de/
Retrieved information on October 22, 2003
 
2. History of Amorbach.
http://www.amorbach-odw.de/
Retrieved information on February 21, 2004
 
3. History of Watterbach.
http://www.kirchzell.de/
Retrieved information on February 21, 2004
 
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