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City of Shawnee, Kansas

Sister Cities



Flag Erfurt GermanyThe Shawnee City Council adopted Resolution 926 designating Erfurt, Germany as a Sister City on June 8, 1993.

The City of Erfurt became a mighty trade metropolis at an early date. The location of the town at the intersection of old trading routes contributed to its rise since it was first mentioned in the 8th century. Those who came here during the Middle Ages could literally get blue: nowhere else in Europe was such an ample amount of the plant, "dyer's woad", to be had. People traded and made piles, the city limits were extended, the residents became rich. They were also the ones who established a university in 1392, which was the first in Germany to combine all four classical courses of study. The most famous student: church reformer Martin Luther, who enrolled for law in 1501. According to recent findings, Johannes Gutenberg is supposed to have studied here, too. Printing with movable letters was carried out according to his method as early as in the 15th century.

Erfurt underwent a revival in the 17th century with commercial horticulture. The big seller was watercress cultures. Beginning in 1807, Erfurt remained under its scepter for seven years. Napoleon's famous encounter with Goethe also falls in this period. The last prominent meeting in the city's history took place in 1970: on March 19 the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the German Democratic Republic, Willi Stoph, received the chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Willy Brandt - a milestone for the later basic treaty between the two German states.

Since the peaceful democratic revolution 1989 and the parliamentary elections for the whole of Germany in 1990, Erfurt has been, once again, the capital of Thüringen and is today the home of 206,000 people. Source by: So schö ist Erfurt (Sachbuchverlag Karin Mader)

Erfurt boasts a zoo, numerous museums, and many flower gardens representative of the city's important horticultural roots.

Thuringian State ChancelleryThe Thüringian State Chancellery, built from 1713 to 1720, could not have picked out a more dignified domicile than the former Kurmainz governor's office.  The monumental baroque edifice was the center of European power politics for a short time when Napoleon resided here after the battle of Jena and Auerstedt.

University of ErfurtThe University of Erfurt was the center of German humanism in the 16th century.  Its law faculty attained fame, Martin Luther praised it as a student as did Adam Riese, who published his legendary mathematics book here in 1518.  All that remained of it was the entrance portal, which is regarded today as the gate to a new start: the University,  founded in 1392 and closed in 1816, is to come alive again soon as a European school of higher educations.

The University claims as its most famous student the church reformer Martin Luther, who enrolled for law in 1501 and was later ordained a priest in Erfurt in 1507.

This page last revised June 28, 2006.