Historic drinking fountain shines in new splendor

The Werner Deschauer Foundation Geisa had invited the public to a small fountain party on September 30, 2023. The occasion was the inauguration of the foundation’s latest sponsorship project, the repair and recommissioning of the drinking fountain at the Sternkreuzung in Geisa.

The chairman Wilhelm Heumüller welcomed the members of the board of trustees, craftsmen and numerous residents of the city and gave a review of the history of the historic fountain. The 17th century drinking fountain, after standing here on Beckersrain for 200 years, across the street, was moved to the ice field because there was often overflowing water around it, which led to mud in the summer and ice in the winter. It stood there for more than 100 years until it was moved back here after reunification and in the course of the square design and road widening.

The escutcheon, held by a lion, is Abbot Bernhard Gustav of Baden-Durlach. From 1671 he was prince abbot in Fulda. And for this reason his coat of arms or heraldic shield can also be found here in Geisa. Pope Clement X elevated him to the rank of cardinal in the same year.

It was the board of trustees of the Werner Deschauer Foundation that committed itself last year to repairing and restoring the non-functioning and somewhat dilapidated fountain. Detlef Günther, who brought all his expertise to the table, played a leading role.

So in the spring of this year, the Ulstertal Baugesellschaft mbH carried out the work for commissioning. Dominik Ebert from the building yard took care of the wiring installation, Ferdinand Kött from Spahl took care of the electrical part, the company Otmar Schüler from Borsch took over the part of the stonemason and Florentin Blum from Kranlucken in cooperation with Clemens Leister was responsible for the refreshing of the color frame and for the gilding work.

Madonna with Jesus boy

The sculpture of the Virgin Mary attached to the building behind it was also restored by master painter and restorer Winfried Trost from Rasdorf on behalf of the foundation. The sculpture is a carving of oak wood. The Madonna on the crescent moon with Jesus boys was made by Hildegard Hendrichs. She was born in Berlin in 1923. Later she lived in Zella in the Rhön so that she could attend the carving school in Empfertshausen. Two other works by Hendrichs can be found in the Lourdes Grotto in Schleid and in the Grotto in Motzlar.

The scaffolding was provided by the building yard of the city of Geisa, the colorful restoration of the niche was done by the company Reinhard from Geisa and the canopy, which was additionally attached for protection, was made by Stefan Henkel from the heating and plumbing company from Geisa.

The whole thing is a project of the Werner Deschauer Foundation, which was able to look back on its 25th anniversary that day.

At the end, Wilhelm Heumüller thanked all the participants and, on behalf of the Foundation, invited everyone to a pleasant drink at the drinking fountain. Mayor Manuela Henkel also expressed her sincere thanks for the fact that a historical landmark has once again been repaired and restored thanks to this Foundation funding project.