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Krefeld Castle Linn at Night Coat of arms Location
Administration Country GermanyStateNorth Rhine-WestphaliaAdmin. regionDüsseldorfDistrictUrban districtLord MayorGregor Kathstede (CDU) Basic statistics Area137.68 km² (53.2 sq mi) Elevation39 m  (128 ft) Population  238,031  (12/06/2008)[1] - Density1,729 /km² (4,478 /sq mi) Other information Time zoneCET/CEST(UTC+1/+2) Licence plateKR Postal codes47701-47839 Area code02151

Coordinates: 51°20′0″N 06°34′0″E / 51.33333, 6.56667

Krefeld (IPA: [ˈkʁeːfɛlt]) is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is located southwest of the Ruhr area, its center just a few kilometres to the west of the River Rhine. (The borough of Uerdingen is situated directly on the Rhine.) The city was also known as Crefeld until 1929. It is accessed by the autobahns A57 (Cologne - Nijmegen) and the A44 (Aachen - Düsseldorf - Dortmund - Kassel)

Krefeld is also called the "Velvet and Silk City".

In more recent decades the city has hosted an honors program in foreign language (German) studies. The program annually places thirty specially selected high school students with families in and around Krefeld for intensive German language training.[2]

Krefeld's residents speak Hochdeutsch, the standard German which all educated Germans are taught. However, the native dialect is a Low German variety, sometimes locally called "Krefelder Plattdeutsch," "Krieewelsch Platt," "Plattdeutsch,," or sometimes simply "Platt." The Uerdingen line isogloss, separating general dialectical areas in Germany and neighboring Germanic-speaking countries, runs through and is named for Krefeld's Uerdingen district, originally an independent municipality.[3]


History of the city

The origins of the town were in Roman times, when the legions founded the military camp of Gelduba (today the borough of Gellep). Krefeld itself was first mentioned in 1105 under the name of Krinvelde. Uerdingen was originally an independent town east of Krefeld, founded in 1255. In medieval times it was larger and more important than Krefeld.

The growth of the town began in the 17th century, when Krefeld was one of few towns spared the horrors of the Thirty Years' War. The town was quickly overpopulated. In 1683 a group of thirteen families (Mennonites) left Krefeld, crossed the Atlantic and founded the settlement of Germantown (now incorporated in Philadelphia).

The town of Uerdingen was less fortunate; it was completely destroyed in the Thirty Years' War by troops from Hesse and almost ceased to exist. Krefeld got ahead of Uerdingen; the towns merged in 1928.


There are a number of districts in Krefeld. Each has a municipal representative, with representatives chosen by local elections. The districts are:

  • Stadtmitte
  • Kempener Feld/Baackeshof
  • Inrath/Kliedbruch
  • Cracau
  • Dießem/Lehmheide
  • Benrad-Süd
  • Forstwald
  • Benrad-Nord
  • Hüls
  • Traar, pop: about 5,000, postal code: 47802
  • Verberg
  • Gartenstadt
  • Bockum, pop: about 28,000, elevation: 35 m, postal code: 47800 (old: 4150 Krefeld 1)
  • Linn
Linn, with its own history reaching to between 1090 and 1120, was situated on the banks of the Rhine. There is in Linn a park built around a Wasserburg, a castle built at the water's edge, and with a water-filled moat. The Burg Linn, as the castle is known, has been preserved for the city's residents as a park and museum. [4][5][6]


Here are the old cities and places that were incorporated into Krefeld:

  • 1901: Linn (Stadtrecht since 1314)
  • 1907: Bockum, Verberg und Oppum (all mayoralty Bockum)
  • 1929:
    • Krefeld became an independent city
    • Uerdingen, Krefeld (received municipal law in 1255/1344, added Hohenbudberg in today's Duisburg district Friemersheim)
    • Fischeln, Krefeld district
    • Traar, Krefeld district
    • Gellep and Stratum (in Lank), Krefeld district
    • Forstwald (Vorst), Krefeld district
    • Benrad und Hülserberg (Hüls), Kempem
  • 1975: Locality of Hüls from Kempen (since 1970 integrated and belonged since 1929 to the Kempen-Krefeld district; in 1936 Orbroich had been independent)

Historical population of Krefeld

Year Population 1604350 17221,499 17877,896 183018,511 187157,105 1875¹ 62,905 188073,872 December 1, 1890¹ 105,376 December 2, 1895¹ 107,245 December 1, 1900¹ 106,928 December 1, 1905¹ 110,344 December 1, 1910¹ 129,406 October 8, 1919¹ 124,325
Year Population June 16, 1925¹ 131,098 June 16, 1933¹ 165,305 May 17, 1939¹ 170,968 September 13, 1950¹ 171,875 June 6, 1961¹ 213,104 December 31, 1970222,700 June 30, 1975230,500 June 30, 1980223,400 June 30, 1985217,000 January 1, 1989235,423 June 30, 1997246,800 December 31, 2003238,565 December 31, 2007240,548

¹ Census data

Mayors of Krefeld from 1848

  • 1848 - 1872: Ludwig Heinrich Ondereyck
  • 1872 - 1881: Friedrich Christian Roos
  • 1882 - 1903: Ernst Küper
  • 1903 - 1905: Dr. Wilhelm Hammerschmidt
  • 1905 - 1911: Dr. Adalbert Oehler
  • 1911 - 1930: Dr. Johannes Johansen
  • 1945 - 1946: Dr. Johannes Stepkes
  • 1946 - 1947: Dr. Wilhelm Warsch
  • 1947 - 1949: Hermann Passen
  • 1949 - 1951: Hanns Müller (FDP)
  • 1951 - 1956: Johannes Hauser (CDU)
  • 1956 - 1961: Josef Hellenbrock (SPD)
  • 1961 - 1968: Herbert van Hüllen (CDU)
  • 1968 - 1982: Hansheinz Hauser (CDU)
  • 1982 - 1989: Dieter Pützhofen, first term in office (CDU)
  • 1989 - 1994: Willi Wahl (SPD)
  • 1994 - 2004: Dieter Pützhofen, second term in office (CDU)
  • 2004 - present: Gregor Kathstede (CDU)

City counsellors 1946 until 1999

  • 1946 - 1949: Dr. Johan Stepkes
  • 1949 - 1964: Dr. Bernhard Heun
  • 1964 - 1986: Dr. Hermann Steffens
  • 1986 - 1988: Dr. Alfred Dahlmann
  • 1988 - 1999: Heinz-Josef Vogt


Krefeld is connected to the Deutsche Bahn network with several stations, however they all carry local trains only. The Düsseldorf-based Rheinbahn operates a Stadtbahn service to the centrally located Rheinstraße stop. This line was the first electric inter-city rail line in Europe, established in 1898, and commonly called the K-Bahn because of the letter "K" used to denote the trains to Krefeld. Nowadays, in the VRR notation it is called U76, with the morning express trains numbered as U70, the line number there being of a red colour instead of the usual blue used for U-Bahn lines. The term 'K-Bahn', however, prevails in common usage.

The city of Krefeld itself operates four tramway and several bus lines under the umbrella of SWK Mobil, a city-owned company. The tram network, however, has fallen into disrepair as the newest rolling stock has already passed 25 years of age and is not at all friendly towards handicapped passengers.[citation needed] The tramway's future is presently being discussed.


Notable Natives


  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ Information
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Herzlich willkommen im Museumszentrum Burg Linn! Besuchen Sie unser Museum

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Krefeld v • d • e   Urban and rural districts in the state of North Rhine-Westphaliain Germany   Urban districtsAachen· Bielefeld· Bochum· Bonn· Bottrop· Dortmund· Duisburg· Düsseldorf· Essen· Gelsenkirchen· Hagen· Hamm· Herne· Köln (Cologne)· Krefeld · Leverkusen· Mönchengladbach· Mülheim· Münster· Oberhausen· Remscheid· Solingen· WuppertalRural DistrictsAachen· Borken· Coesfeld· Düren· Ennepe-Ruhr-Kreis· Euskirchen· Gütersloh· Heinsberg· Herford· Hochsauerland· Höxter· Kleve (Cleves)· Lippe· Märkischer Kreis· Mettmann· Minden-Lübbecke· Oberbergischer Kreis· Olpe· Paderborn· Recklinghausen· Rheinisch-Bergischer Kreis· Rhein-Erft-Kreis· Rhein-Kreis Neuss· Rhein-Sieg-Kreis· Siegen-Wittgenstein· Soest· Steinfurt· Unna· Viersen· Warendorf· Wesel Categories: Cities in North Rhine-WestphaliaHidden categories: All articles with dead external links | Articles with dead external links since March 2008 | All articles with unsourced statements | Articles with unsourced statements since May 2008

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