Historical Wolfsburg

The history of Wolfsburg

Official foundation of the city

26 May 1938 marked the ceremonial laying of the Volkswagen plant’s foundation stone. With effect from 1 July, the “City of the KdF Car at Fallersleben” was founded by decree of the Governor of Hanover Province. It was built on land belonging to the old village of Heßlingen and the originally independent Wolfsburg estate district, which had been part of it since 1928, as well as to the village of Rothehof/Rothenfelde with parts of the municipalities of Mörse, Sandkamp, Fallersleben and Hattorf.

Choice of name

About two-thirds of the Volkswagen plant was destroyed by the time the Second World War came to an end. The residential districts remained almost completely unscathed by air raids. By resolution of the city council on 25 May, the city was finally named “Wolfsburg” after the castle by the River Aller.

A watershed date

A watershed moment in the city’s history was the initial municipal endowment contract between the city and the Federal Republic of Germany, the State of Lower Saxony and the Volkswagen plant. This contract, dated 21 February, gave the city ownership rights over a large part of the land located within its limits. The millionth Volkswagen rolled off the line. The city granted honorary citizenship to General Director Heinrich Nordhoff. The first town planner of the Volkswagen city, Peter Koller, was put in charge of Wolfsburg’s building authority and urban planning. He geared his planning to a city of around 100,000 inhabitants. On 11 October, Vorsfelde received its town charter to which the community had a right as far back as the 17th century.

Territorial reorganisation

The Lower Saxony territorial reorganisation on 1 July led to the incorporation of 20 municipalities into the city of Wolfsburg, including the towns of Fallersleben and Vorsfelde. That meant the young city now had an area of 203 square kilometres and its population had increased to 130,979.

Schloss Wolfsburg

Over 700 years of history

Schloss Wolfsburg (Wolfsburg Castle) is the namesake and landmark of the young city of Wolfsburg. Schloss Wolfsburg with its ornamental gables and onion tower was developed from the 16th century onwards into one of the most magnificent testimonies to the North German Renaissance. The beautifully landscaped castle park invites you to stroll and linger.


Hoffmann von Fallersleben´s home town

The first documented mention of Fallersleben dates from the year 942, meaning the town has a history going back more than 1,000 years, although it is probably even older. It was incorporated in the city of Wolfsburg in 1972 under Lower Saxony’s territorial reorganisation. The romantic little town has retained its special charm to this day, despite being part of a large city. A beautiful old town with numerous half-timbered houses invites visitors to stroll and linger. The 16th-century castle houses the Hoffmann von Fallersleben Museum, which is dedicated to the work of the famous scholar and poet who wrote the words to the German national anthem. Numerous historical events, such as the annual Old Town Festival, attract many visitors to Fallersleben.  Tradition is also preserved in the Old Brewery, where beer is still brewed today.


Vorsfelde - the Boar City

“Varesfelt” first appears on official documents in 1145, but historians assume that the village was founded around 1130. Like Fallersleben, Vorsfelde was incorporated in the city of Wolfsburg in 1972. Its historic centre is shaped by a unified ensemble of restored half-timbered houses.   The sights include St. Peter’s Church, the Beekeeper’s House and the Carl Grete House. The traditional Boar Festival, which derives its name from the animal in Vorsfelde’s coat of arms, also has cult status far beyond the former village.



St.-Petrus-Church was built in several phases and is the oldest building in Vorsfelde. The medieval edifice is a single-nave aisleless church with a tower in the west and a transept in the east.

Imkerhaus Vorsfelde

The oldest house in Vorsfelde.

The three-storey half-timbered house was built in 1590 as a residential and storage building. The left half of the house, whose eaves face the street, consists of a two-storey living area. The right side is formed by a gabled, three-storey building with a large hallway on the ground floor. The half-timbering is decorated with fan-shaped rosettes and coloured mottoes are inlaid in the façade beams.

Rothenfelde & Old Heßlingen

The historic core

The historic district of Old Heßlingen/Rothenfelde is located in the heart of Wolfsburg. You’re barely five minutes from the pedestrian zone, yet feel like you’re in the countryside. Small half-timbered houses characterise this lovable district.



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