Sometimes the past is so complex, diverse or extensive that it needs more than one article. For these cases, we have created series that deal with one topic in several articles.
Louise and Leopold
In 1902, Crown Princess Louise and Archduke Leopold of Austria-Tuscany fled to Switzerland. The siblings sought to escape from their straitjacketed life in the bosom of the Habsburg family. They succeeded, but their lives became a scandal-plagued descent into a normal middle-class existence, and ultimately ended in poverty and loneliness.
Michael van Orsouw20.12.2021In Switzerland, the runaway Habsburgs Louise and Leopold deliberately laid false trails in order to continue hiding their whereabouts. But their efforts were unsuccessful, and the scandal shocked the aristocracy and the public throughout Europe.
Michael van Orsouw24.12.2021After fleeing to Switzerland, Leopold settled there permanently and became a citizen of the city of Zug. His wife, on the other hand, preferred to spend her time at Monte Verità, a Mecca for alternative lifestylers. It wasn’t long before the storm clouds started gathering…
Michael van Orsouw29.12.2021Leopold Wölfling remarried, and his bride was once again a lady with a dubious reputation. And his naturalisation became problematic. His sister Louise, now also living in Switzerland, was presented with an opportunity to take revenge on the royal house of Saxony...
Michael van Orsouw03.01.2022The former Archduke Leopold was still a citizen of Regensdorf, but spent years embroiled in arguments with the Regensdorf municipality, while Louise remarried, and fled back to Switzerland when her marriage became rocky.
Alexander Rechsteiner27.12.2021In summer 1955, Switzerland’s first motorway was opened in Lucerne. It was the first piece of the puzzle of what is now the national road network, today covering around 2,254 kilometres.
Andrej Abplanalp29.11.2021Francs or guilders? In the mid-19th century, this question divided Switzerland. In the end it was the franc, but further dispute erupted over the design of the new national currency.
Katrin Brunner13.12.2021An elevator to the 3,700-metre summit of the Wetterhorn. At the beginning of the 20th century, this was one engineer’s dream. His dream did eventually come true, even if not in its entirety: in 1908 Switzerland welcomed its first aerial cableway for passenger transport.
Andrej Abplanalp15.11.2021Today, pedestrians almost always have right of way. That hasn’t always been the case. Since the first zebra crossing was installed in Basel in 1948, however, pedestrian road use has become a lot safer.
Andrej Abplanalp05.01.2022In 1853 efforts got under way to ‘break the stone’ that stood between the cantons of Basel-Landschaft and Solothurn. Five years later the Hauenstein, Switzerland’s first real railway tunnel, was opened.
Simon Engel24.03.2021How a traditional game from Scotland became a glamour sport in Switzerland, and then went back to being a traditional game ‘of the people’: A brief history of curling in Switzerland
Michael Jucker07.05.2021We mentally associate schwingen, traditional Swiss wrestling, with brawny herdsmen fighting a clean fight in idyllic mountain surroundings. But it’s not as straightforward as that. Urban dwellers played a bigger role in popularising the sport than one might think.
Michael Jucker10.11.2021Around 1880, women here and there in Switzerland picked up boxing gloves for the first time. With their efforts initially dismissed as circus sideshows, women battled until the 1990s to be allowed to box competitively.