Dating in the black forest

Re-enactments of historical battles between two villages are highlights on the agenda, as is the annual historical Christmas celebration in the snowy forest.

And though the focus of the museum itself is on "the good old days," thanks to modern technology, arrival by train brings you straight to the front gates of the Vogtsbauernhof after a breath-taking tour through the less-traveled parts of the Black Forest.

Demonstrations from before the industrial revolution In between the larger farmhouses are a smattering of outposts dedicated to the very particular tasks involved in self-sufficient living before the Industrial Revolution.

In one, a mechanical saw chops away at logs a half-meter in circumference.

From outside, the thatched-roof building appears large and is nearly barn-like in its size; the narrow staircases and low ceilings inside reveal, however, how claustrophobic life with an extended family here must have been.

Each building has its own unique characteristics and brief explanations about its significance in the village it was removed from.

() With a density of trees and hilly terrain, the Black Forest long required its inhabitants to lead subsistence lives.

At the Vogtsbauernhof Open Air Museum, visitors experience what life was like four centuries ago.In the larger cities, the aesthetics are homogenous.Baden-Baden in the northwestern - or High Black Forest - area is famous for its 19th-century French-style villas with filigreed balconies and pastel hues.Visitors following the well-marked path through the museum will come across well-plotted gardens explaining the utility of many plants native to the region and learn from guides dressed in traditional clothing about the particulars of animal farming in the forest.The rivalries between the villages dating back centuries are also explained, as is the meaning of the clothing worn.No easy feat, getting a squirrel, dormouse or wood grouse in front of the camera.

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