Hexenagger castle probably was first built in the tenth century, as it is first mentioned in a record from the Monastery of St. Emmeram of Regensburg in 982. Originally, the Bavarian noble family of Muggenthaler resided in the castle. The castle was destroyed during the Thirty Years' War and rebuilt in the Baroque style. Since the extinction of the Hexenagger Muggerthaler family line, the castle has passed through several owners. One of the most notable owners was Elector Karl Albrecht, later Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII, who purchased the castle in 1724 as a gift for his mistress, Countess Maria Josepha von Morawitzky.
Today, the castle is privately owned by Eberhard Leichtfuß and his family. Mr. Leichtfuß is the sixth generation of the noble family von Weidenbach to inherit and live in the castle. The family supports the restoration of the castle by hosting events including summer medieval festivals, weddings, company events, and Christmas markets.References:
The Externsteine (Extern stones) is a distinctive sandstone rock formation located in the Teutoburg Forest, near the town of Horn-Bad Meinberg. The formation is a tor consisting of several tall, narrow columns of rock which rise abruptly from the surrounding wooded hills. Archaeological excavations have yielded some Upper Paleolithic stone tools dating to about 10,700 BC from 9,600 BC.
In a popular tradition going back to an idea proposed to Hermann Hamelmann in 1564, the Externsteine are identified as a sacred site of the pagan Saxons, and the location of the Irminsul (sacral pillar-like object in German paganism) idol reportedly destroyed by Charlemagne; there is however no archaeological evidence that would confirm the site's use during the relevant period.
The stones were used as the site of a hermitage in the Middle Ages, and by at least the high medieval period were the site of a Christian chapel. The Externsteine relief is a medieval depiction of the Descent from the Cross. It remains controversial whether the site was already used for Christian worship in the 8th to early 10th centuries.
The Externsteine gained prominence when Völkisch and nationalistic scholars took an interest in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This interest peaked under the Nazi regime, when the Externsteine became a focus of nazi propaganda. Today, they remain a popular tourist destination and also continue to attract Neo-Pagans and Neo-Nazis.