Geschichte des Hauses
1n 1507, Luther's father, Hans Luder, purchased the house - now known as the Parents' House [Elternhaus] - and owned it until the time of his death in 1530. Afterwards, ownership was transferred to Hans Luder's son Jacob. In a note dating from 1542, a second dwelling is mentioned. A second house would explain the size of the house and the adjoining farm complex.
The house remained in the family until it was sold in late 1578. In 1807, the central section of the building was demolished in order to give access to the mayor's house, which lies behind it. Later, the section of the building to the left of the driveway was renovated. As a result, only about one-third of the original house remains today.
This remaining section of the Parents' House was acquired by the Mansfeld Luther House Association between the years of 1878 and 1885, during which time it served as deaconess lodgings. Using the house for such a social purpose was considered an honor to Luther's memory.
In 1889, the local Church took ownership of the house. In 2007, in preparation for the renovations, the house was transferred to the city of Mansfeld in preparation for the necessary renovations. This work began in 2011 and will be completed in 2013.
Luther's Parents' House is undergoing an expansion that is to include a modern museum building that will be located on the opposite side of the street from the memorial. In addition to exhibition space, the building will also include space for special events and cultural education programs.
At the same time as the expansion, the historic building will be renovated and outfitted with new museum facilities. Until now, the building has had only one exhibition room, which is on the top floor. Moving forward, the rooms in the cellar and on the main floor will be made available with the intention of helping to introduce visitors to Luther's early childhood years and youth in Mansfeld.
Once construction is complete, current plans call for the group of buildings to be transferred to the auspices of the Luther Memorials Foundation in Saxony-Anhalt. Taken together, the Luther Memorials at Eisleben and Wittenberg and the renovated Parents' House will make it possible to depict Luther's biography and works in their entirety.
The design for the new building was devised by the Alderhalten architectural firm from Berlin.
Luther was shaped by his early childhood and youth in Mansfeld. Thus, the focus of the permanent exhibition in the new building will be on the life of the young Martin Luther. Throughout his life, Luther regarded himself as a native of the Mansfeld district. In fact, his later writings reflect both his experiences as a schoolboy and his upbringing in his parent's home.
The archeological findings that have been excavated since 2003 on the grounds of Luther's Parents' House have shed new light on the daily lives of Hans and Margarethe Luder and their children. Topics such as life in the house and farm, children's toys, clothing, the household, and food are all represented in the exhibition. Luther's years in school in Mansfeld will also be highlighted in the exhibition.
Renovation of the historical building is being approached in an innovative manner that will expand upon the exhibitions and enable visitors to hear, see and experience the setting in [a] way that it will give a lasting impression of the world around the year 1500.
[German language version not available]