In 1618, Gasthof Hecht (Pike Inn) – later on Gasthof zur Post – was mentioned in a document for the first time.
The guest-house has been family-owned for over 200 years. Up till 1996 it was owned by the family “von Dreer”. Since then, the “Alte Post” belongs to the Berchtold family, who are related to the Dreer family. They have completely renovated the hotel.
The name “von Dreer” became famous at the end of the 18th century due to the landlady and postmistress, Posthalterin Cäcilie von Dreer.
The story of Cäcilie von Dreer in 1796:
During the French Revolutionary Wars, General Ferino had occupied the town of Mindelheim with his army. When Wagner, a court clerk, once complained to the general about atrocities of the French soldiers, the general became furious and gave orders for the town to be plundered and set on fire. All pleas for mercy were in vain. But then the landlady, Frau Posthalterin Dreer, took her children and threw herself down on her knees in front of him. The harsh man was moved by her entreaties and he took back the command.
The grateful inhabitants of Mindelheim had a large votive picture painted in remembrance of their being saved. It can be seen in the museum.
The plaque on the front of the “Alte Post”, the picture in the hotel by the stairway up to the first floor, the street “Dreergasse” with its historic paintings, and a stage play: all these things remind us of the famous ancester.
The “Post” also became renowned because of prominent guests who stayed there in the course of time. The following short summary gives an outline of the guests and events in the history of the Gasthof zur Post / Gasthof zum Hecht:
4 July 1618
The old Augustinian monastery was handed over to the Jesuits with a church service and subsequent ceremony. The celebrations ended with a meal in the Gasthof zum Hecht.
15/16 September 1704
Prince Eugene of Savoy, the “noble knight”, who was an outstanding military commander of the Habsburg Emperor, resided in the Hecht.
9 August 1796
The Prince of Condé (the leader of the royalist French troops) stayed at the Gasthof zum Hecht with his general staff.
21 September 1796
Cäcilie von Dreer went down on her knees in front of the French General Ferino in the Gasthof zum Hecht, and her pleadings saved the town of Mindelheim from being plundered and destroyed by the French troops.
Archduke Charles of Austria and the Russian General Gortschakow stayed overnight at the Hecht.
In the course of the French Revolutionary Wars, the French Generals Lecourbe and Moreau stayed at the Hecht.
Up until May 1801
High-ranking French officers were lodged in the Gasthof zum Hecht.
9 June 1814
Francis I, Emperor of Austria (previously called Francis II, the last Holy Roman Emperor) and his brother Ferdinand came through Mindelheim on their way back to Vienna from the peace negotiations in Paris. They stayed at the Gasthof zum Hecht, and by order of King Maximillian I of Bavaria, a ceremonial reception was prepared for them.
3 July 1814
Ex-Empress Marie-Louise (the second wife of Napoleon and daughter of Francis I, Emperor of Austria) stayed the night at the Hecht on her journey from Vienna to Aix-les-Bains.
16 November 1818
A ball in the Gasthof zum Hecht concluded the celebrations that took place when local self-government was restored.
In September 1834
King Ludwig I of Bavaria stayed overnight in the Gasthof zum Hecht.
In August 1838
Tsar Nicholas I of Russia spent the night at the Hecht.
The Gasthof zum Hecht was a post-house until 1875, and soon afterwards it was renamed “Gasthof zur Post”. A bronze pike over the bay window in the Steinstraße reminds us of the former name.
The building itself remained undamaged during the last terrible world wars.
The “Post” was and has always remained a centre of hospitality in Mindelheim.