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The Bell Minister and
the bells from the church of Desingerode

from Reinhard Schulzig, translated by the webmaster (as well I′m able)

From 8 to 11 June 2006 in Desingerode was solemnly committed the 250. Anniversary of the consecration of the St. - Mauritius church. The bells of this church have a very interesting history, which is partially closely connected with with the history of the bell foundry Otto in Hemelingen near Bremen.

The bell minister Carl Otto

When you takes into the hand the (very successful) church leader “the churches in the Eichsfeld” and checks the individual churches in the column “bells”, appeared recently, you often find the reference that one or several of the bells were poured by the bell foundry Otto in Hemelingen near Bremen, so e.g. the bells of the "Propsteikirche" in Duderstadt. After the death of the minister Johannes Friedrich Gödeke on 27 October 1877 - in the Cultural war time - Desingerode did not get a minister for more than seven years. The relationship between state and church was poisoned. Desingerode was cosupplied by neighbour clergyman. The parochial church council made itself strong for the vicar Schlote from Bilshausen, because this had carried “a so beautiful agency out”. But the vicar general and later cardinal in Wroclaw, Georg Kopp, had to reject a replacement of the priest employment in Desingerode due to the general conditions. Only on 24 February 1884 Carl Otto came clergyman to Desingerode with the auxiliary clergyman (vicar). Carl was born on 15 February 1838 in Duderstadt as a son of a shoemaker and on 24 August 1864 in Hildesheim he was dedicated to the priest.

Further stations of its priest life were:

- 11.1.1863 to 1865: Cooperator1 in Fuhrbach
- 1 October until 31 October 1863: Temporary help in Gieboldehausen
- May 1865 until 20-October 1866: Missionary in Verden/Aller and teachers in Kettenburg near Elze.
- 20. May until 20 October 1866: Missionary in Hemelingen near Bremen,
- afterwards until 1884: Minister in Hemelingen, as the 3rd minister at all in this community.
- 1884: Auxiliary clergyman in Desingerode
- starting from 1 July 1884: Ministers of Desingerode

As well as its brother Franz he later built the world-wide well-known bell foundry Otto in Hemelingen near Bremen. He became a appreciative specialist for bells. He also worked as a technical writer in this area. He published:

1. 1871 in the "organ for Christian art" "artistic remarks over bells". A technical evaluation and description of some ringing and/or some special bells of churches in the calibration field and far beyond that. "

2. 1887 in the self-publishing house the book "theory of the bell tones - an acoustic monograph." Unfortunately this work is not today also in archives and libraries (e.g. the SUB Goettingen) any more existing.2

Carl Otto was always a reserved, nearly shy man. A contemporary said about him, it had preached even reluctantly. School advice Josef Kellner from Coesfeld published 1968 into “the golden Mark, 19. Jg., 1968, number 4, P. 73-76” an essay, which describes humans Carl Otto in telling form. In Desingerode Otto provided for a new steeple clock, to which he let three impact bells in Hemelingen pour. The largest of them still today serves as Angelus bell. Under its personal line 1897 in Hemelingen two large bells for the Desingeröder church were poured. The acquisition of a third bell failed to 1956 under the minister Ludwig Debray because of the resistance of the parochial church council in Desingerode and was retrieved. 1905 collapsed the basement ceiling the 1666 built parsonage building. Otto had already penetrated several years after to build a new parsonage building however because of the refusal of the parochial church council had failed. The collapse of the cover made now a new building indispensable. This house stands still today and as parsonage building is used. Otto was in the last years of its service in Desingerode often suffered and the bishop sent again and again a vicar to the assistance. Apparently it did not please Otto in this time in Desingerode any longer, because it wrote on 10 August 1910 the Hildesheimer bishop Dr. Adolf Bertram:

"High-worthiest Mr. bishop, most benevolent gentleman! I would like to want to retire your episcopal grace thereby cordially to ask me with 01 October of the year. If your grace should prefer it to employ here a representative priest which leads the Priest business, then is also quite me. Because it depends me to move away from here because it became me completely too against between the local people to live. For little lifetime, which the dear God still gives me, would like I annoyance, which for me the building of the parsonage building and two caused school building and which other Hetzereien, under which I have suffering for years, to escape. Since I am 72 years old in the meantime and in consequence of my heart disease for 12 years despite the indulgence practically unfit for duty am, I hope confidently that your episcopal grace will correspond to my request, for which I will remain always grateful. Mr. Kaplan singer guessed/advised me also to this step. Most subdued and obediently Carl Otto, Pfarrer"

bishop Bertram corresponded to the desire of the minister. In the autumn of the year 1910 Otto withdrew himself in all silence from Desingerode and went first to Bremen. Because however the climate did not please him there and was detrimental its health, it pulled later to the Rhine after Duesseldorf Wersten. Here it died on 4 March 1917 at the age of 79 years. The bell foundry along-justified of it was closed 1971 because of economic difficulties. Desingerode had thus a genuine bell specialist to the minister, who contributed the long history of the Desingeröder bells considerably.

The bells of the church of Desingerode

In the year 1497 for Desingerode a twenty hundredweights heavy bell is poured. The bell inscription read: "anno dm mccc xcii hilf o goth maria berothe sanktus mauritius".

1546 call an inventory register of the Duderstädter of minister Heinrich Bunthe for the Desingeröder church three Glocken3.

1894, lively by minister Carl Otto, the old bell of 1497 are melted and used to the pouring of two new bells.4 the large bell carry the inscription: "Maria, mater gratiae, Mater misericordiae, Tu nos ab hoste protege, In hora mortis suscip!" (Maria, Mother of the grace, mother of the mercy, you protects us against the enemy, takes us on in the hour of death.) The second bell carries the following inscription: 5 "Sankte Mauriti, noster patrone, Juva nos tua oratione!" (Holy Mauritius, our protector, help us by your prayer). One year later, 1895, for Desingerode three small impact bells for the hourly impact of the new steeple clock are poured by Otto in Hemelingen. The smaller quarter of an hour bell takes the inscription: "Quarta simul cum secunda tempus tibi signo" (I show you the quarterly and half hour). The larger quarter of an hour bell has the following inscription: "Horam querenz primam exspecta docentem" (the first hour searching, expects the messages). The hourly bell, which can be also rung and this very day as Angelus bell serves, has the inscription: "Hora ruit, sed lotis fides nobis semper manebit" (the hour rushes [storms], but us cleaning [baptized one] remains always the loyalty of God [the faith]).

In the two world wars many bells were seized, because the metal was used for the armament economy. In the First World War historically valuable bells were not seized, and the bells of Desingerode remained therefore spared. Also in the Second World War the bells were similarly classified, but nevertheless they were transported. Fortunately they were however not melted and were not found again 1947 on the so-called "bell cemetery", an area in Hamburg Wilhelm castle.

1962 were poured out of cause of the 25-year old local anniversary of the minister Ludwig Debray6 a third large bell at the company Otto in Hemelingen. In two different places the inscriptions stand: "Ludwig Debray 25 Jahre Pfarrer Desingerode St. George, ora pro nobis" (Hl. George prays for us). The second inscription is to the patron of the Esplingeröder chapel, hl. George, remind. The legend of the bell from Desingerode each child in Desingerode knows also still today the legend of the bell of Desingerode. After this legend the residents from Nesselröden shepherd between Nesselröden and Werxhausen guarded its pigs. One day one of the animals dug free the suspension of a bell. This find got around itself fast also in the village and the people came to the pasture run. The exhibition-hilarious tried in various way to pull the bell from the sump which however always failed. Under being astonished views of humans fastened finally an unknown girl its hair band at the bell, it pulled out easy and disappeared immediately again. The Dorfschulze decided to bring the bell on an ox car to the church in Nesselröden. The animals were however not to be moved to hit the right way. Also in Werxhausen they didn′t stop, but continued to pull to forwards the church in Desingerode. Here the bell was unloaded, because the animals suddenly didn′t want to do any more step.

Bells of the foundry Otto, Hemelingen, into Eichsfelder churches8

Arenshausen 1 bell of 1925
Bernterode (HIG) 1 of 1894
Bernterode (Wipper) 1 of 1922
Bickenriede 1 of 1894
Birkenfeld 1 of 1920
Birkungen 1 of 1922
Breitenholz 1 of 1919
Burgwalde 1 of 1921
Desingerode 2 of 1894; 1 of 19629
Deuna ? bell(s) of 1926
Duderstadt ("St. Cyriakus") 4 of 1951
Eichstruth 1 of 1920; 1 of 1922
Fretterode, kath. church 1 of 1922
Geismar 1 of 1922
Gerbershausen 1 of 1934
Gernrode 1 of 1922
Gieboldehausen, kath. church 3 of 1919
Großbartloff 1 of 1919
Großtöpfer, kath. church 1 of 1902
Hausen ∼ 1 of 1921
Hohengandern 1 of 1925
Hülfensberg 1 of 1922
Kalteneber 1 of 1927
Kefferhausen, St. Cyriakus 1 1889
Kirchworbis 1 of 1922
Kleinbartloff 1 of 1903
Lenterode 1 of 1919
Lutter 1 of 1921
Mackenrode 1 of 1920
Obernfeld 1 of 1926
Rengelrode 1 of 1919
Rimbach 1 of 1929
Schachtebich 1 of 1889
Schierschwende 1 of 1887
Schwobfeld 1 of 1899
Siemerode, St. Nikolaus 1 of 1920
Thalwenden 1 of 1920
Uder, kath. church 1 of 1910

reference work:

Essay of Rector Wüstefeld "A bell caster family from Eichsfeld" into "Unser Eichsfeld" 4/1924


1 a priest, who supports the local clergyman and in the pastoral care cooperates.
2 If someone should know, where this work is still present, please ask the author for a notice.
3 Diek: Sankt Cyriakus.
4 Arand, Martin: Desingerode - a homeland writing 1972.
5 Walter, Karl: Bell customer. 1913. In this work is also a listing of churches in all world, to which the company Otto Glocken supplied. With translate the inscriptions has kindly Mr. Pfarrer em. Albert Stechmann, Desingerode, helped.
6 Ludwig Debray (1891-1974) was from 1937 to 1966 ministers of the place. Today still much is told by it in the village.
7 Arand: Desingerode (note 4).
8 see Lucke, Keppler, cut among other things: The churches in Eichsfeld. Church and art leader. Duderstadt 2005. Substantial references to Eichsfelder bells are of Andreas Philipp, Göttingen.
9 the impact bells ("Schlagglocken") are not here taken in account.