Idar-Oberstein

From Academic Kids

Idar-Oberstein (known in some circles as "The Gemstone Capital") is a city in the Rhineland-Palatinate in Germany. It lies on the Nahe River, in the district of Birkenfeld. It is the largest city in the Hunsrück region of southwest Germany, and has a population of around 34,400.

The towns of Idar and Oberstein belonged to the barons of Oberstein (who later became the counts of Falkenstein) until 1670. In 1865, both Idar and Oberstein were chartered as cities, and finally in 1933, they united (along with the smaller towns of Algenrodt and Tiefenstein) to form the modern town of Idar-Oberstein.

Idar-Oberstein is currently best known as a gemstone center: until recently, the area was a source for agate and jasper (both semi-precious stones), and the gem and jewelry trade continues to flourish in Idar-Oberstein today.

Two ruined medieval castles are perched on the hills above the town, and are, after gemstones and jewelry, the chief tourist attractions in the city, along with the Church of the Rock that is literally carved into the side of the cliffs on which the castles rest.

Baumholder, a United States military installation just south of Idar-Oberstein, is reportedly the largest concentration of American combat soldiers outside of the U.S.

Bruce Willis was born in this city in 1955.

External link

de:Idar-Oberstein nl:Idar-Oberstein

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