Aareschlucht bei Meiringen

Aareschlucht bei Meiringen

This early postcard, probably around 1910-1915, features the Aare River gorge (Aareschlucht) near Meiringen, Switzerland.  Satellite imagery from the area is quite stunning, and the view from the ground today is equally as beautiful as it was a hundred years ago.

The first path to and through the gorge was built in 1888 and, naturally, admission was charged.  Interestingly, it was not Meiringen that received the original concession from the government; instead, it was the village of Villigen, which was over 120 kilometers away.  By 1912, electric lighting had been added, allowing the gorge to remain open to the public after dark, and the first restaurant was built and opened in 1928.  A flood in 1942 destroyed most of the paths, but these were rebuilt and additional roads to the gorge were added by 1947, resulting in a large increase in visitors.

From 1912-1957, a tram ran between the gorge and the towns of Meiringen and Reichenbach, home to Reichenbach Falls, also on the Aare River and the place where Sherlock Holmes met his death in A. Conan Doyle’s “The Adventure of the Final Problem”.

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