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Home News Swiss “witch” museum receives CHF1million anonymous gift

Swiss “witch” museum receives CHF1million anonymous gift

Published on February 13, 2018

The Anna Göldi Museum in Glarus has received a donation of CHF1 million ($1.1 million), museum director Fridolin Elmer announced on Monday. This should allow it to stay open all year round, says a statement.

This museum first opened in August 2017 and shows the history of the maid Anna Göldi, who was famously tried and executed as the “last witch of Europe” in 1782 by the Glarus judiciary. The exhibition guides visitors through the past of the old Swiss confederation. It also highlights the value of our contemporary human rights and celebrates a shared culture of remembrance.

Exhibits are housed in a historic building in Enneda, in the canton of Glarus. The donation is tied to an expansion project aimed at ensuring that the central building of the museum, the so-called Hänggiturm, can be used in the long-term, the museum statement says. The tower was built during the heyday of the Swiss textile industry in the 19th Century and was used as a drying tower. Long, colourful fabric panels used to be hung down the 12-metre high attic floor to be air-dried.

Currently, the museum is forced to close its doors during the winter months, between November and March, due to cold weather. With these new funds, it will be able to heat the tower and be open to visitors all year round. The museum management is also considering construction of a library and hopes to implement all changes by 2019, it said in the press release.

The money came from a cultural patron who is familiar with the local area and has close ties to the culture of Glarus and the historically significant Hänggiturm.