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Illness and Death in the Era of Neoabsolutism: New Perspectives on Liberal-Catholic Conflict from 1850s Upper Austria

  • Max H. Vögler


On 8 March 1849, Upper Austria's first liberal governor, Alois Fischer, stood on the balcony of the Rathaus in Linz's market square and proclaimed the closing of the democratically elected Austrian Reichstag in Kremsier. The newly crowned emperor, Francis Joseph, had written in the proclamation that Fischer now read to the crowd that the Reichstag delegates took too long in their deliberations, wasting time on “dangerous theoretical discussions.” Their labors had become redundant, and the emperor would decree his own constitution. After reciting the imperial proclamation, Fischer retired to the side and let his assistant read out the new constitution. Named after its principal architect, Minister of the Interior Franz Stadion, the new “Stadion” constitution was mildly liberal, although, unlike its unfinished predecessor, it was wholly unambiguous when it came to the monarch: his powers were immense and—the document made sure to point out—derived from God, not from the people. In practice, the constitution was mostly ignored. Fittingly perhaps, those assembled in front of the Rathaus that day could barely make out what was being said. As one participant described the scene, the wind was so strong “that our neighbors disappeared in the dust.” The return of absolutist government thus came to Linz unintelligibly, wrapped in a dense cloud of dust.



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1 “All sovereignty proceeds from the people,” the delegates in Kremsier had initially declared, whereupon Stadion rose to declare the dictum unacceptable to the government. The proclamation was dated 4 March 1849. On both constitutions, see Macartney, C. A., The Habsburg Empire, 1790–1918 (New York, 1969), 417–25.

2 Josef Reiter to Jodok Stülz, 8 March 1849. Cited in Pangerl, Kriemhild, “Josef Reiter Can. Reg. (1805–1876),” in Kirchengeschichte in Linz. Fakultät—Lehrkanzel—Professoren, ed. Zinnhobler, Rudolf and Pangerl, Kriemhild (Linz, 2000), 185.

3 See, for example, Sked, Alan, The Decline and Fall of the Habsburg Empire, 1815–1918 (London, 1990), 137.

4 LordActon, John, “Notes on the Present State of Austria (1861),” in Essays on Church and State by Lord Acton, ed. Woodruff, Douglas (London, 1952), 341.

5 Alexander Bach, “Vortrag des Ministers des Innern Alexander Bach, d.d. 18 August 1849, womit derselbe ein Exemplar jenes Rundschreibens zur Ah. Einsicht vorlegt, das er in Folge seiner Ernennung zum Minister des Innern an sämmtliche Landes-Chefs in der Absicht mitgetheilt hatte,” cited in Walter, Friedrich, Die Österreichische Zentralverwaltung. III. Abteilung: Von der Märzrevolution 1848 bis zur Dezemberverfassung 1867, vol. 2, Die Geschichte der Ministerien Kolowrat, Ficquelmont, Pillersdorf, Wessenberg-Doblhoff und Schwarzenberg. Aktenstücke (Vienna, 1964), 106.

6 Jászi, Oscar, The Dissolution of the Habsburg Monarchy (Chicago, 1961), 100. Further examples include Taylor, A. J. P., The Habsburg Monarchy, 1809–1918: A History of the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary (Chicago, 1976); Winter, Eduard, Revolution, Neoabsolutismus und Liberalismus in der Donaumonarchie (Vienna, 1969); Bérenger, Jean, Die Geschichte des Habsburgerreiches, 1273 bis 1918 (Vienna, 1995), 612–17.

7 A well-craft ed counter-argument—the 1850s as turning point—is made in Waldenegg, Georg Christoph Berger, Mit vereinten Kräften! Zum Verhältnis von Herrschaftspraxis und Systemkonsolidierung im Neoabsolutismus am Beispiel der Nationalanleihe von 1854 (Vienna, 2002), 3342.

8 As a point of comparison: a search in the Österreichische Historische Bibliographie yielded only forty-two entries when searching for articles related to “neoabsolutism”; a search for “1848” yielded 2,664 entries. Grabmayer, Johannes et al. , Österreichische Historische Bibliographie (Klagenfurt, 2006), (accessed 18 June 2006).

9 Friedjung's excellent and immensely readable account is a good starting point for the decade and is also one of the few works published before the 1927 Palace of Justice fire. Friedjung, Heinrich, Österreich von 1848 bis 1860, 2 vols. (Stuttgart, 1908–12). Among more recent scholarship, there is the dense but rewarding, Brandt, Harm-Hinrich, Der österreichische Neoabsolutismus: Staatsfinanzen und Politik 1848–1860, 2 vols. (Göttingen, 1978). See also the excellent new study by one of Brandt's students, Berger Waldenegg, Mit vereinten Kräften! Interesting and more specialized or regional accounts not included in the next few footnotes include Heindl, Waltraud, “Staat, Gesellschaft und Verwaltung im Neoabsolutismus,” in Kultur der Demokratie. Festschrift für Manfried Welan zum 65. Geburtstag, ed. Brünner, Christian and Welan, Manfried (Vienna, 2002); Kirchmayr, Franz, “Oberösterreich in der Zeit des Neoabsolutismus (1850–1860),” (PhD diss., Leopold-Franzens-Universität Innsbruck, 1968); Coons, Ronald E., “Kübeck and the Pre-Revolutionary Origins of Austrian Neoabsolutism,” in Gesellschaft, Politik und Verwaltung in der Habsburgermonarchie, 1830–1918, ed. Glatz, Ference and Melville, Ralph (Stuttgart, 1987); Brigitte Mazohl-Wallnig, “Überlegungen zu einer Verwaltungsgeschichte Lombardo-Venetiens im Neoabsolutismus,” in Gesellschaft, Politik und Verwaltung in der Habsburgermonarchie; Stölzl, Christoph, Die Ära Bach in Böhmen. Sozialgeschichtliche Studien zum Neoabsolutismus 1849–1859 (Munich, 1971).

10 Wozniak, Peter, “Count Leo Thun: A Conservative Savior of Educational Reform in the Decade of Neoabsolutism,” Austrian History Yearbook 26 (1995): 6181; Leigh, Jeffrey T., “Public Opinion, Public Order, and Press Policy in the Neoabsolutist State: Bohemia, 1849–52,” Austrian History Yearbook 35 (2004): 98.

11 Götz, Thomas, Bürgertum und Liberalismus in Tirol 1840–1873. Zwischen Stadt und Region, Staat und Nation, Italien in der Moderne, vol. 10 (Cologne, 2001). Other excellent recent works on the 1850s and early 1860s include Mazohl-Wallnig, “Überlegungen zu einer Verwaltungsgeschichte”; Cole, Laurence, “The Counter-Reformation's Last Stand: Austria,” in Culture Wars: Secular-Catholic Conflict in Nineteenth-Century Europe, ed. Clark, Christopher and Kaiser, Wolfram (Cambridge, 2003), 285312. See also many of the articles in Urbanitsch, Peter and Steckel, Hannes, Kleinstadtbürgertum in der Habsburgermonarchie: 1862–1914 (Vienna, 2000).

12 Götz, Bürgertum und Liberalismus, 23, 522–25; Hanisch, Ernst, Der lange Schatten des Staates: Österreichische Gesellschaftsgeschichte im 20. Jahrhundert (Vienna, 1994). Hanisch's thesis has not been without its detractors, who argue, rightly, that it reproduces a peculiar and rather static Austrian form of the Sonderweg argument. See, for example, Staudinger, Eduard G., “Ernst Hanischs ‘Der lange Schatten des Staates’: Eine sehr persönliche Gesellschaftsgeschichte in unserem Jahrhundert,” Zeitschrift des Historischen Vereines für Steiermark 87 (1996): 255–61; Heiss, Hans, “Der lange Schatten des Staates: Österreichische Gesellschaft sgeschichte im 20. Jahrhundert,” review of Der lange Schatten des Staates, by Ernst Hannisch, Archiv für Sozialgeschichte 35 (1995): 821–27.

13 This point is best made by Vocelka, Karl, Verfassung oder Konkordat? Der publizistische und politische Kampf der österreichischen Liberalen um die Religionsgesetze des Jahres 1868 (Vienna, 1978).

14 Alexander Bach remains a strange lacuna in Habsburg historiography. The few extended studies that exist include Friedjung, Heinrich, “Alexander Bachs Jugend und Bildungsjahre,” in Historische Aufsätze (Stuttgart, 1919), 2439; Alexander Bach: Politisches Characterbild (Leipzig, 1850); Falk, Minna Regina, “Social Forces in the Austrian Revolution of 1848, with Special Attention to the Leadership of Alexander Bach,” (PhD diss., New York University, 1933).

15 On Fischer, who held the position from 1849 to 1851, see Fischer, Alois, Aus meinem Amtsleben (Augsburg, 1860).

16 Until 1849, Salzburg was administratively part of Upper Austria.

17 As with his brother Alexander, there has been little written on Eduard Bach. See, for example, the often inaccurate Walter, Friedrich, “Beiträge zu einer Biographie Eduard Bachs,” Mitteilungen des Oberösterreichischen Landesarchivs 8 (1964): 326–29. A more balanced view can be found in Slapnicka, Harry, Oberösterreich, die politische Führungsschicht: 1861 bis 1918 (Linz, 1983); Slapnicka, , “Eduard Bach (1814–1884): Kaiserlicher Statthalter in der zentralistischbürokratischen Ära,” in Oberösterreicher: Lebensbilder zur Geschichte Oberösterreichs, ed. Marckhgott, Gerhart and Slapnicka, Harry (Linz, 1991), 1531. The “offi cial” record is probably closer to the mark: see Bach's obituary, Linzer Zeitung, 17 February 1884, 1.

18 Wimmer, Kurt, Liberalismus in Oberösterreich: am Beispiel des liberal-politischen Vereins für Oberösterreich in Linz (1869–1909) (Linz, 1979), 22.

19 The German term Gemeinde denotes a geographical sub-unit of the province (Land) and is thus equivalent to the English term commune. The larger municipalities existed as separate entities and usually enjoyed further privileges, either through their status as “market” or “free” towns, or with a unique set of privileges granted by the emperor. See Stundner, Franz, “Die Entwicklung des Städtewesens in Österreich im 19. Jahrhundert,” in Die Städte Mitteleuropas im 19. Jahrhundert, ed. Rausch, Wilhelm (Linz, 1983), 7378.

20 The reform of the Gemeindesystem, like much of the Stadion constitution, became the subject of heated battles between the ministries and within the government. In practice, the constitution was increasingly ignored during the 1850s, but it became the foundation for a much more thorough reform a decade later. See Linzer Zeitung, 29 July and 20 September 1851; as well as Stundner, “Die Entwicklung des Städtewesens,” 73–78. A good overview of the conflicts within the government can be found in Walter, Die Österreichische Zentralverwaltung, 1:572ff.

21 “Die Grundfeste des freien Staates ist die freie Gemeinde.” The Gemeindegesetz was issued just two weeks after the Stadion Constitution. Article 1 of the Provisorisches Gemeinderecht, Reichsgesetzblatt (hereaft er cited as RGBl.) Nr. 170, 17 March 1849, pp. 203–23. All laws cited from Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, Austrian Newspapers Online—Gesetzestexte (Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, 2004), (accessed 29 October 2004). See also Ogris, “Gemeinderecht,” 86.

22 Liberal historians and commentators have, of course, pointed to these provisions as “Stadions reifste legislatorische Leistung.” Ogris, “Gemeinderecht,” 86.

23 On this point see, GÖtz, Bürgertum und Liberalismus, chapter 4.

24 The commune became an important setting for Liberal activity in much of Europe in the years after 1848. See, for example, Hazareesingh, Sudhir, “Religion and Politics in the Saint-Napoleon Festivity, 1852–1870: Anti-Clericalism, Local Patriotism and Modernity,” English Historical Review 119, no. 482 (2004): 614–49; Craig, Gordon A., The Triumph of Liberalism: Zurich in the Golden Age, 1830–1869 (New York, 1988); Hamerow, Theodor S., Restoration, Revolution, Reaction: Economics and Politics in Germany, 1815–1871 (Princeton, 1958).

25 In the Vormärz, Austrian counties and municipalities enjoyed comparatively few rights when compared to their neighbors to the north. As Thomas Nipperdey has fittingly put it, during these years, “die städtische Verwaltung wurde verstaatlicht.” Nipperdey, Thomas, Deutsche Geschichte 1800–1866. Bürgerwelt und starker Staat, 3rd ed. (Munich, 1983), 339; Ogris, “Gemeinderecht”; Sheehan, James J., German History, 1770–1866 (Oxford, 1989), 489.

26 See accounts in Linzer Zeitung, October and November 1850. See also Kirchmayr, “OberÖsterreich,” 8.

27 From KÖrner's speech upon being elected mayor. Reprinted in Linzer Zeitung, 17 November 1850.

28 There is some doubt among historians over whether KÖrner resigned in protest or was forcefully asked to resign. More than likely, it was a mix of both. Grüll, Georg, Das Linzer Bürgermeisterbuch (Linz, 1959), 108; Kirchmayr, “OberÖsterreich,” 167.

29 See the various chapters in Urbanitsch and Steckel, Kleinstadtbürgertum in der Habsburgermonarchie.

30 On the Ordinances of 18 and 23 April 1850, see Weinzierl-Fischer, Erika, Die Österreichischen Konkordate von 1855 und 1933 (Vienna, 1960), 59.

31 On this point, see, Wozniak, “Leo Thun.”

32 Although this point may sound minor, it represented a major and hard-won concession on the part of the church. The complete Concordat is reprinted in Weinzierl-Fischer, Die Österreichischen Konkordate, 250–58.

33 A good overview of the clerical/anti-clerical culture wars in nineteenth-century Europe is provided by Clark and Kaiser, Culture Wars.

34 Some scholars argue that Josephinism was the Austrian version of reform Catholicism, while others emphasize its uniquely Austrian aspects, focusing on the role it played in the Habsburg state-building process. For an example of the former, see Winter, Eduard, Der Josefinismus und seine Geschichte. Beiträge zur Geistesgeschichte Österreichs, 1740–1848 (Brno, 1943). For the latter, see Maass, Ferdinand, Der Josephinismus (Vienna, 1951); Bowman, William D., Priest and Parish in Vienna, 1780 to 1880 (Boston, 1999). See also Beales, Derek, Joseph II, vol. 1 (Cambridge, 1987); Blanning, T. C. W., Joseph II: Profi les in Power (London, 1994); Ingrao, Charles W., The Habsburg Monarchy, 1618–1815 (Cambridge, 1994), chapter 6; O'Brien, Charles H., “Ideas of Religious Toleration at the Time of Joseph II: A Study of the Enlightenment among Catholics in Austria,” Transactions of the American Philosophical Society 59, no. 7 (1969): 180.

35 Bunnell, Adam, Before Infallibility: Liberal Catholicism in Biedermeier Vienna (Rutherford, 1990).

36 See especially Mayer, Gottfried, Österreich als katholische Grossmacht: ein Traum zwischen Revolution und liberaler Ära (Vienna, 1989).

37 Ultramontanism denotes a strain within Catholicism that emphasizes a strict sense of hierarchy and the primacy of the pope within the Catholic Church as a whole. As Nicholas Atkins and Frank Tallett have noted, the term “came to embody an ideology that took in liturgy, devotion, clerical discipline, theology and extended to the realm of politics, social action and culture.” Nicholas Atkin and Tallett, Frank, Priests, Prelates and People: A History of European Catholicism since 1750 (Oxford, 2004), 130. In relation to liberalism, Ultramontanism denotes the idea of a Roman Catholic Church existing apart from—or, on occasion, even above—the (liberal) state. See the introduction to my “Religion, Liberalism, and the Social Question in the Habsburg Hinterland: The Catholic Church in Upper Austria, 1850–1914,” (PhD diss., Columbia University, 2006).

38 It often makes little sense to speak of a “Germany” before 1866–71—that is, to exclude the German-speaking regions of the Habsburg monarchy from the historical narrative before that date—but when it comes to Catholic theology and inner-Catholic politics, there was a marked difference between the German-speaking provinces within and outside the monarchy long before 1871. As the well-known Munich theologian Ignaz von DÖllinger commented while speaking in Linz in 1850, “Wir draußen in Deutschland wussten äußerst Wenig von dem, was in dem katholischen Österreich auf dem theologischen Gebiete vorgehe … und was uns Österreich selbst auf diesem Gebiete erschien, was für uns andere, ich mÖchte sagen, so ganz fremdartig, so ganz, wie es schien, auf einem anderen Boden gewachsen, aus einem anderen Geiste hervorgebracht, dass wir es als etwas für uns Unverständliches ganz beiseite legten.” Friedrich, Johann, Ignaz von DÖllinger: Sein Leben auf Grund schrift lichen Nachlasses, 3 vols. (Munich, 1901), 3:82. On this point, see also Sheehan, James J., “What is German History? Reflections on the Role of the Nation in German History and Historiography,” Journal of Modern History 53, no. 2 (1981): 123; Godsey, William D., Nobles and Nation in Central Europe: Free Imperial Knights in the Age of Revolution, 1750–1850 (Cambridge, 2004).

39 Some historians have argued that the Concordat can be interpreted as a “rearticulation of Josephinist principles regarding the church-state relationship.” In the scope of its ambitions and its willingness to dispense wiThexisting regulations, it certainly matched the scale of many Josephinist reforms; but whereas Josephinism had sought to fuse the two bureaucracies together, the Concordat aimed at separating them, while giving the Catholic Church jurisdiction over central state functions such as primary education and marriage laws. Josephinist principles, in contrast, were always first and foremost about state jurisdiction. Boyer, John W., Political Radicalism in Late Imperial Vienna: Origins of the Christian Social Movement, 1848–1897 (Chicago, 1981), 2021. The above quote is from Judson, Pieter M., Exclusive Revolutionaries: Liberal Politics, Social Experience, and National Identity in the Austrian Empire, 1848–1914, (Ann Arbor, 1996), 71.

40 Weinzierl-Fischer, Die Österreichischen Konkordate, 73–74, 100. Although liberals were rightly distraught at many aspects of the Concordat, it also created the basis of a separation of church and state that would make the later transition to religious equality and liberal constitutionalism much easier. On this point, see the discussion in Boyer, Political Radicalism, 19–21; Burns, Gene, “The Politics of Ideology: The Papal Struggle with Liberalism,” American Journal of Sociology 95, no. 5 (1990): 1130–32.

41 I will use “general hospital” to denote the German allgemeines Krankenhaus and “religious hospital” for Ordensspital. There are no ready equivalents in English for the words Hospital and Krankenhaus. Hospice, the nearest equivalent to Hospital, fails to convey the openness of the term—which refers to any institution that took people in and remains in use in Austria and Switzerland (Spital) as a synonym for Krankenhaus. The very term Krankenhaus thus denotes an attempt of the late-eighteenth-century medical community to differentiate “their” institution from Spitale. Jütte, Robert, “Vom Hospital zum Krankenhaus: 16. bis 19. Jahrhundert,” in “Einem jedem Kranken in einem Hospitale sein eigenes Bett”: Zur Sozialgeschichte des Allgemeinen Krankenhauses in Deutschland im 19. Jahrhundert, ed. Labisch, Alfons and Spree, Reinhard (Frankfurt am Main, 1996), 32.

42 On the transition to the modern clinical hospital in the early nineteenth century, see Foucault, Michel, The Birth of the Clinic: An Archeology of Medical Perception (New York, 1994); Foucault, , “Space, Knowledge, and Power,” in The Foucault Reader, ed. Rabinow, Paul (New York, 1984), 239–56; Lesky, Erna, “Das Wiener Allgemeine Krankenhaus. Seine Gründung und Wirkung auf deutsche Spitäler,” Clio Medica 2, no. 1 (1967): 2339; Murken, Axel Hinrich, Vom Armenhospital zum Grossklinikum: die Geschichte des Krankenhauses vom 18. Jahrhundert bis zur Gegenwart (Cologne, 1988); Labisch and Spree, eds., “Einem jedem Kranken”; Sturmberger, Hans, “Vom ‘Hospital’ zum ‘Krankenhaus’: Zur Geschichte des Krankenhauswesens in OberÖsterreich bis zum 1. Weltkrieg,” Mitteilungen des OberÖsterreichischen Landesarchivs 11 (1974): 229–47.

43 On “push” and “pull,” see Spree, Reinhard, “Krankenhausentwicklungen und Sozialpolitik in Deutschland während des 19. Jahrhunderts,” Historische Zeitschrift 260 (1995): 102–3; Alfons Labisch, “Stadt und Krankenhaus. Das Allgemeine Krankenhaus in der kommunalen Sozial- und Gesundheitspolitik des 19. Jahrhunderts,” in “Einem jedem Kranken,”; ed. Labisch and Spree, 255.

44 On hospitals in Linz before the nineteenth century, see Knörlein, Anton, Kurzgefasste Geschichte der Heilanstalten und des Medicinalwesens in Linz (Linz, 1855); Sturmberger, “Vom ‘Hospital’ zum ‘Krankenhaus’,” 227–41.

45 The 1770 Sanitäts-Normativ created a medical council of government officials and doctors in each province that met every eight days to consult on matters of public health. But while this did much to centralize the medical profession, it did little to increase state oversight of church-controlled hospitals, over which the council had no direct control. See KnÖrlein, Kurzgefasste Geschichte der Heilanstalten, 15.

46 The Catholic Church played an important role in health care throughout the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, a welcome partner of the state in endeavors such as the vaccination campaign in the late eighteenth century. Pammer, Michael, “Vom Beichtzettel zum Impfzeugnis: Beamte, Ärzte, Priester und die Einführung der Vaccination,” Österreich in Geschichte und Literatur 39, no. 1 (1995): 1129.

47 KnÖrlein, Kurzgefasste Geschichte der Heilanstalten, 11.

48 The building of the Maximillian Towers and the Linz-Budweis (České Budějovice) railroad in the early 1830s, as well as the start of regular traffic on the Danube later that decade by the Donau-Dampfschiff ahrtsgesellschaft, brought a steady stream of workers, merchants, and tourists to the region.

49 “4 Cholera-Spitäler [wurden] errichtet, die Stadt in Sanitäts-Bezirke getheilt, und Aerzte und Wundärzte zu deren Überwachung aufgestellt.” KnÖrlein, Kurzgefasste Geschichte der Heilanstalten, 31. On Asiatic cholera in Europe, see Evans, Richard J., “Epidemics and Revolution: Cholera in Nineteenth-Century Europe,” Past & Present 120 (1988): 123–46. In the monarchy, doctors from all provinces were invited by the government in Vienna to travel to Galicia in 1831 to study the effects and dangers of cholera up close. Hornof, Zdeněk, “Josef Škoda als Choleraarzt in BÖhmen,” Clio Medica 2, no. 1 (1967): 5562. In Upper Austria, as in most other towns in Central Europe, the results of the expedition were followed quite closely. See, for example, Berichte des Herrn Doktor Leo aus Warschau über die Heilung der Cholera (Steyr, 1831). As Peter Baldwin has noted, the 1830s epidemic produced “a veritable biblio-cholera” that in itself seemed acutely contagious. Baldwin, Peter, Contagion and the State in Europe, 1830–1930 (Cambridge, 1999), 3839.

50 Starkenfels's title was General-Inspektor für Gefängniswesen, which also included hospitals. Starkenfels to Alexander v. Bach, 16 January 1856, OberÖsterreichisches Landesarchiv, Statthalterei-Presidium, Reihe VII D (hereaft er cited as OÖLA StPr VII D), Schachtel (hereaft er cited as Sch.) 371. A rather different estimate is available in Kirchmayr, “OberÖsterreich,” 474–78. He comes to a total of six hundred beds, although he includes institutions that catered to “specialized” groups: the Landes-Irrenanstalt (the insane), the Gebär- und Findelanstalt (unwed mothers), the Städtisches Krankenhaus (women with venereal diseases), and the Städtische Versorgungsanstalt (a poor house).

51 Figures are for 1857. “Suburbs” includes Urfahr, Kleinmünchen, Ebelsbergen, Traun, and St. Peter. See Österreichisches Statistisches Zentralamt, Geschichte und Ergebnisse der zentralen amtlichen Statistik in Österreich, 1829– 1979 (Vienna, 1979), 13; John, Michael and Stadler, Gerhard A., “Zur BevÖlkerungsentwicklung und Stadtwachstum in Linz, 1840–1880,” Historisches Jahrbuch der Stadt Linz (1987): 121.

52 In the plans, reports, and correspondence of local officials and doctors involved in the planning process, Munich, more oft en than Vienna or even smaller towns in the monarchy, such as Brno, was the model for their planning efforts throughout the 1840s and 50s. Brenner, Alexander and Kempf, J., Das Allgemeine Krankenhaus der Stadt Linz: 1865–1904 (Linz, 1904). On the general hospital in Munich, see Spree, Reinhard, “Sozialer Wandel im Krankenhaus während des 19. Jahrhunderts. Das Beispiel des Münchner Allgemeinen Krankenhauses,” Medizinhistorisches Journal 33, nos. 3–4 (1998): 251.

53 In their plea to the Statthalterei, KnÖrlein and Onderka called it a Civilkrankenhaus in order to further distinguish it from the religious Ordensspitäler. Josef Onderka was the head of the medical community, the Regierungs- und Landes-Medicinalrath, in Upper Austria. KnÖrlein and Onderka to Statthalterei Linz (hereaft er cited as SHL), 29 October 1855, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

54 [E. B.], Geschichtliche Darstellung der Entstehung des Allgemeinen Krankenhauses in Linz. Aus Anlaß der Grundsteinlegung am 15. September 1863 (Linz, 1863), 6. The following account is based on Brenner and Kempf, Krankenhaus; [E. B.], Geschichtliche Darstellung; Sturmberger, “Vom ‘Hospital’ zum ‘Krankenhaus’;” KnÖrlein, Kurzgefasste Geschichte der Heilanstalten; Kirchmayr, “OberÖsterreich,” 474–82.

55 A complete list of contributions can be found in Brenner and Kempf, Krankenhaus, 16–19.

56 Heindl, Waltraud, ed., Die Protokolle des Österreichischen Ministerrates. III. Abteilung. Das Ministerium Buol-Schauenstein vol. 3, 11 Oktober 1853–19. Dezember 1854, (Vienna, 1984), 171–72.

57 Starkenfels to Alexander v. Bach, 16 January 1856; Beul to Eduard v. Bach, 8 April 1856; and Baumgarten to SHL, 27 May 1856. All letters at OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

58 Läcilia to SHL, 22 April 1856; and, BC to SHL, 10 May 1856, bothat OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

59 Dotter to SHL, 9 June 1856, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

60 Linzer DiÖzesanblatt 2 (1856): 179, 295.

61 “Jedem Kranken ohne Unterschied der Nationalität, des Bekenntnisses und Geschlechtes, sowie jeder Krankheitsform zu jeder Zeit zugänglich sein.” [E. B.], Geschichtliche Darstellung der Entstehung des Allgemeinen Krankenhauses, 5.

62 Fink to SHL, 2 November 1856, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

63 The Landes-Medizinalkommission was established in 1850 as a more “professional” successor to the 1770 Sanitäts-Normativ. Kirchmayr, “OberÖsterreich,” 484.

64 KnÖrlein and Onderka to SHL, 29 October 1855, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

65 Cholera statistics from KnÖrlein and Onderka to SHL, 29 October 1855, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371. See also the various articles in the Linzer Zeitung, 25 June until late September 1855.

66 Fink to SHL, 14 August 1855, OÖLA StPr VII D, Sch. 371.

67 Bratislava (Pressburg) was the only other town to receive lottery funds to build a general hospital in the 1850s, at least of the cases documented in the minutes of the Conference of Ministers in the 1850s. Heindl, ed., Protokolle Buol-Schauenstein, 3:171. The conflict over the building of the hospital was by no means over, however, as the municipality and the province soon became embroiled in a prolonged struggle over who would control the new hospital. See Max Voegler, “Religion, Liberalism, and the Social Question,” 123ff.

68 In 1860, Schwannenstadt became Schwanenstadt, dropping an ‘n.’ I have chosen the present-day usage for the text, but have left the old spelling unchanged in quotations.

69 The von Jenny textile factory, founded in either 1784 or 1786, depending on the source, was important enough to merit a mention in most economic histories of the period: see Hoffmann, Alfred, Wirtschaft sgeschichte des Landes OberÖsterreich: Werden, Wachsen, Reifen. Von der Frühzeit bis zum Jahre 1848, 2 vols. (Linz, 1952), 1:329–30; Sandgruber, Roman, Ökonomie und Politik: Österreichische Wirtschaft sgeschichte vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart, Österreichische Geschichte (Vienna, 1995), 183; Slokar, Johann, Geschichte der Österreichischen Industrie und ihrer FÖrderung unter Kaiser Franz I (Vienna, 1914), 312. The factory went bankrupt in the 1880s. Bamberger, Eckhard and Slapnicka, Harry, eds., Schwanenstadt. Chronik herausgegeben von der Stadtgemeinde Schwanenstadt zur 350-Jahr-Feier der Stadterhebung. (Schwanenstadt, 1977), 72. Though nothing else remains, there is still a “von-Jenny-Str.” in the town.

70 This arrangement was another remnant of Josephinist marriage laws. Vocelka, Verfassung oder Konkordat?, 23.

71 It is unclear whether the von Jenny family was made aware of the bishop's position before Fridolin's death. Rudigier to Eduard v. Bach, 18 July 1855; and Rudigier to Thun, undated letter (approx. July 1858). Unless stated otherwise, all correspondence relating to the von Jenny case can be found under the insignia “ad 3521 1855” in OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

72 Von Mayfeld held the rank of Kreiskomissar 3. Klasse, KreisbehÖrde Ried.

73 Emphasis in the original. Von Mayfeld (Kreisamt Ried) to SHL, 23 June 1855, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

74 “Non-Catholics” refers to what Rudigier and his contemporary termed Akatholiken: Christians of a non-Catholic confession. Jews and Moslems were regarded separately; atheists and members of other religious congregations could not yet legally register those (non-)faiths.

75 SHL to Bezirksamt and Pfarramt, Schwanenstadt, 23 June 1855, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

76 Emphasis in the original. Rudigier to Thun, undated letter (approx. July 1858), OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

77 Rudigier to Eduard v. Bach, 18 July 1855, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

78 Emphasis in the original. Rudigier to Thun, undated letter (approx. July 1858), OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

79 Rudigier to Eduard v. Bach, 18 July 1855, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

80 Though also Ultramontane in outlook, Rudigier's predecessor, Gregorius Thomas Ziegler, had not embarked on a grand reform of the diocese during his tenure as bishop; moreover, his relationship with the diocese's secular clergy remained tense. Mayer, Österreich als katholische Grossmacht; Zinnhobler, Rudolf, ed., Die BischÖfe von Linz (Linz, 1985). On the inner-church tensions between the Josephinists and anti-Josephinists, see Weinzierl-Fischer, Erika, “Die Kirchenfrage auf dem Österreichischen Reichstag 1848/49,” Mitteilungen des Österreichischen Staatsarchivs 8 (1955): 178–83.

81 The 403 parishes of the diocese were organized into twenty-eight deanships (Dekanate), which represented an important intermediary link between the regular clergy and the diocesan administration.

82 Emphasis in the original. Rudigier to Thun, undated letter (approx. July 1858), OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

83 See, “FriedhÖfe,” in Mischler, Ernst and Ulbrich, Josef, Österreichisches StaatswÖrterbuch: Handbuch des gesammten Österreichischen Öff entlichen Rechtes, 2nd ed., 4 vols. (Vienna, 1905), 2:150–54.

84 “Hofdekret from 12 August 1788,” in Handbuch aller unter der Regierung des Kaisers Joseph des II. für die K.K. Erbländer ergangenen Verordnungen und Gesetze in einer sistematischen Verbindung. Enthält die Verordnungen und Gesetze vom Jahre 1788 (Vienna, 1789), 15:945.

85 Although the 1781 Toleranz-Patent of Joseph II permitted the worship of other recognized religions, the 1832 law reaffi rmed that, “der Vorzug des Öff entlichen Religions Excercitii aber blos der katholischen Religion eingeräumt wurde.” In Catholic cemeteries this meant that no sermons could be held during the funeral, which was not standard practice among Austrian Catholics in the nineteenth century, nor could there be any forms of singing. Both were then common at Protestant burials. “Regierungsdekret from 26 October 1832, Z. 28241. k. k. ob der ennsischen Landesregierung,” in Sammlung der politischen Gesetze und Verordnungen für das Erzherzogthum Oesterreich ob der Enns und das Herzogthum Salzburg, vol. 10, Verordnungen 1. Jän. bis 31. Dez. 1828 (Linz, 1832), 340–42.

86 Neither Susanna von Jenny nor the municipal administration in Schwanenstadt mentioned a Johann Jenny in their correspondence. It is probable that he was a brother or other relative of Fridolin's who helped run the factory. Eight non-Catholics were buried in the local cemetery in the fifty years preceeding the von Jenny case. The last funeral had taken place in 1846. Gemeinde Schwanenst adt to SHL, 12 January 1856, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

87 This is my own measurement. In the correspondence between church and government officials, there was much disagreement on this point.

88 Gemeinde Schwanenstadt to Kreisvorstehung Wels, 10 August 1855, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

89 “Verordnung über die Einpfarrung der in der Provinz Österreich ob der Enns und Salzburg wohnenden akatholischen Glaubensgenossen zu bestimmten Bethhäuser,” issued 17 January 1849. Fischer took offi ce on 1 January of the same year. The decree can be found inside a letter from Rudigier to Kreil, 23 June 1858, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

90 The Frintaneum, an elite theological college, was established by the Austrian government in 1816 to ensure that gift ed priests would remain in the monarchy to take a doctorate rather than go to Rome, where it was feared they would come under the direct influence of the Vatican. On the Frintaneum, see Bowman, Priest and Parish, 104–5; Meindl, Konrad, Leben und Wirken des Bischofes Franz Joseph Rudigier von Linz, 2 vols. (Linz, 1891), 1:137ff.

91 Under the Concordat, all matters relating to Catholic marriages were to be heard in an ecclesiastical rather than a secular court.

92 Reitshammer's two predecessors, Norbert Petermandl (1817–42) and Simon Pumberger (1843–53), both died in office. Dannerbauer, P. Wolfgang, General-Schematismus des geistlichen Personalstandes der DiÖcese Linz vom Jahre 1785 bis 1885. Eine Festschrift zur Ersten Säcular-Feier des Bisthums Linz (Linz, 1887), 174.

93 Pastoral letter from 25 February 1852, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

94 Leisching, Peter, “Die RÖmisch-Katholische Kirche in Cisleithanien,” in Die Habsburgermonarchie 1848–1918, vol. 4, Die Konfessionen, ed. Wandruszka, Adam and Urbanitsch, Peter (Vienna, 1985), 140.

95 Friedrich Gottas, “Die Geschichte des Protestantismus in der Habsburgermonarchie,” in Die Habsburgermonarchie, ed. Wandruszka and Urbanitsch, 551–53.

96 Wiener Zeitung, 6–8 June 1856. The diocese filed copies under DiÖzesanarchiv Linz, Consitorial Akten/10, Fasz. L25, Sch. 26.

97 Just as in the von Jenny case, however, the local administration fought the Church and won. SchÖnthaler was a prominent merchant and a leader of the Protestant community. Bezirkshauptmann Braunau to SHL, 9 April 1876, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 425. As the Pfarrchronik Braunau records, he was buried “mit Gewalt” in the local cemetery (emphasis in the original). Cited in Slapnicka, Politische Führungsschicht, 195.

98 Von Jenny to SHL, 20 October 1856, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

99 SHL to Bezirksvorsteher, Schwanenstadt, 24 October 1856, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

100 By April 1857, the matter had made it to the Ministry for Religion and Education in Vienna. See Thun to SHL, 5 April 1857. OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

101 Von Jenny to Francis Joseph, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

102 Thun to Eduard v. Bach, 8 June 1859, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

103 All correspondence from July 1859, OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

104 Indeed, the issue of Protestant burials regularly came up in the Ministerrat. See, for example, Heindl, ed., Protokolle Buol-Schauenstein, 3:321; Heindl, , ed., Die Protokolle des Österreichischen Ministerrates. III. Abteilung. Das Ministerium Buol-Schauenstein, vol. 4, 23, Dezember 1854–12. April 1856 (Vienna, 1987), 305–6.

105 Von Jenny to von Mayfeld, 17 September 1863; and BO to SHL, 17 September 1863, both in OÖLA StPr XI F, Sch. 424.

106 RGBl. 49, 25 May 1868, pp. 99–102. See Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, Austrian Newspapers Online.

107 See, for example, “Zur Welser Friedhof-Frage,” Linzer Volksblatt, 7 August 1886; as well as Pree, Helmuth, Die St. Barbara-Gottesacker Stift ung in Linz. Ihre rechtsgeschichtliche Entwicklung (Linz, 2000).

Illness and Death in the Era of Neoabsolutism: New Perspectives on Liberal-Catholic Conflict from 1850s Upper Austria

  • Max H. Vögler


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