The term Viehweg translates in German, cattle path. In the early 1700's, the Roman Catholic Church, determined to convert followers of Caspar Schwenkfeld to their faith, sent two Jesuit priests, John Milan and Karl Regent to carry out the task in the area around Harpersdorf, Silesia. When persuasion failed, they chose harsher methods including fines and imprisonment. The ultimate degradation was to refuse this little sect to bury their dead in cemeteries with proper services. Instead they were made to place the bodies at the "Potters Field" along the cattle path, which was a sign of disgrace. Over 200 "Schwenkfelders" suffered this fate.
In 1772, Christopher Schultz first proposed the idea of consecrating the ground and erecting a monument, but it wasn't until 1861 that Dr. Soloman Schultz, while traveling in Europe, had the chance to visit Silesia. At the urging of Rev. Oswald Kadelbach, Dr. Schultz determined to erect a memorial at the site commemorating those that had suffered such an ignominious death. The project came to fruition and two years later it was completed.
GPS Coordinates: 51.09684, 15.77628
- Added: 17 Aug 2010
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2366323
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