A Short History of the Town
In 1033 the Emperor Konrad I gave the property rule in the Upper Ybbs Valley to the Diocese Freising as a present.
The first documentary name can be found in 1166. The neighbourhood to the Erzberg in Styria implied the development of an iron industry in our town and as early as 1136 the minnesinger Neidhart von Reuenthal sings the praises of the iron blades from Waidhofen.
Already in the oldest „urbar“ of the town (1316) blade and knife forgers, whetters and skythe and sickle forgers are mentioned.
In the 14th and 15th centuries the town flourished continuously, craft and trade developed a lively activity and Waidhofen became the center of the „Eisenwurzen“.In the golden age of the town there were more than 200 forge hammers in Waidhofen.
We do not have a document in which Waidhofen was promoted a town, but already in 1273 a „nova civitas“ (new town) is mentioned in an old paper. In all the centuries during which Waidhofen/Ybbs remained under Freising rule (Bavarian Waidhofen) there was no mayor, there was a municipal judge.
Around 1400 Bishop Berthold von Wehingen from Freising has the fortifications extended by walls and towers according to the existing stragtegic knowledge.
At the same time the Gothic profile of the town came into being. After the Turkish Siege in 1532 the Reformation and the Counterreformation left traces in the Counter history of the town. Many forgers submitted to the dictates of the religions and emigrated to the area around Solingen, almost half of the houses were uninhabited. In the 18th century the relationship of the town with Freising loosened and in 1786 the municipal judge was replaced by a mayor. In 1803 the Freising property passed over to the House of Habsburg.
With the reform of the administration the regional authority was transfered to Amstetten and for compensation Waidhofen became a self-governing town with a statute.