To our American Friends
To Our American Friends who Served at Dolan Barracks
We welcome visitors from all nations to our city but we especially welcome back those of the US Forces and their families who once served and lived at Dolan Barracks in Hessental. We thank you for your service in Germany which will long be remembered. Your presence lent more of an international character to our city. We know you are looking forward to see what many of you call your German second home. To help you prepare for your visit we have included a brief description of our city including the area that was once called Dolan Barracks. Additional information can be found on this website. (Please click on the flag for English).
Schwäbisch Hall has retained its medieval charm. The market place with the beautiful St Michaels church and City Hall is breathtaking. Our city has become more cosmopolitan with a strong emphasis on art and culture. The city Art Gallery shows changing displays of contemporary art and the excellent Hällisch-Fränkisches Museum which displays include the ancient extraction of salt, early industrialization, the Nazi era and post war recovery. Two new stunning museums, the Kunsthalle Wuerth and the Johanniterkirche show world class art. For the performing arts of course, the Open Air Theater "Freilichtspiele" on the steps of St Michaels Church offers a wide repertoire each summer. This year the program also includes, “Summer of Love”, a story about an American soldier and a German woman from the city in the 1960’s. It is a musical featuring the great American and German tunes of those years. Also a unique theatre-in-the-round, called appropriately the Globe Theater, is located on an island on the Kocher. Nearby the Hohenlohe Open Air Museum, the Hohenlohe Freilandmuseum, recreates a lively authentic image of early rural life in Germany. Familiar and new shopping opportunities abound every where in the city.
Dolan Barracks is now called Solpark and is no longer home to the US Army. The last unit departed in April 1993 and the area was turned over to the German authorities in October of that year. Solpark, now home to German families and light industry, is accessible and while many buildings have been razed you will recognise other structures in the area. Much has changed including the familiar post entrance and street plan. But don’t let that deter you from visiting Solpark to bring back memories.
The Germans have not forgotten Dolan Barracks. There are two excellent museum displays of the post and the former German Airbase (Fliegerhorst). The Hällisch-Fränkisches Museum located in the city near the Kocher River has an interesting permanent exhibition of the American 48 year presence at Dolan Barracks. (The display has a selection of short films on the US Army which is activated by a touch screen.) Please see use the link on this website for location and opening times. Another excellent museum is the Fliegerhorst (Airbase) Museum located on Solpark. It is in the House of the Economy (Haus der Wirtschaft).building directly to the right of the large German WW II hanger that you will remember. The exhibition covers the early development of the German Air Base through the presence of the US Army. The extensive display includes parts of German aircraft excavated from the airfield.
Schwäbisch Hall is inviting any time of the year. Please click on “Festivals and Celebrations” on this website to see what will be happening during your visit.
We very much look forward to your arrival!