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Asselborn mill – Clerveaux

History of the house

Age-old flour mill lost in the natural wilderness of Luxembourg

Nearly a thousand years old, the feudal Asselborn mill (Domaine touristique des Ardennes Luxembourgeoises d’Asselborn) is considered to be one of the oldest watermills in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. It was first mentioned in 1036, when the renowned Abbey of Saint-Maximin of Trier acquired the Asselborn property via an exchange of contacts with the monastery of Stavelot-Malmedy. Throughout its nearly 1200 years of existence, the abbey maintained close ties with the dynasty of the Counts of Luxembourg.

Asselborn Mill - old mapUnder the feudal system, mills constituted an important part of abbey and seigniorial possessions. In addition to being symbols of feudal power, they were essential facilities, principally because of the revenues they generated. Public archives frequently mention the Asselborn mill, specifying the identity of the millers to whom it was leased, the amount of rent due and any legal disputes.

The archives tell us that in 1591, the wife of the miller Paulus Tudtz was molested by a sharecropper called Kleffer, whom she bit on the thumb in self-defence. The sharecropper was punished by the Bailiff of Reuland and the miller requested to be “kind and friendly” with his clients.

The mill is known to have had three waterwheels and ground wheat flour, rye flour and oatmeal as well as clover seeds. The Koener family, Asselborn’s final family of millers, still produced flour until the end of the Second World War. Sold in 1981 to its current owners, it was renovated in 1987 and converted into a watermill museum three years later.

 

A typical Luxembourg traditional architecture

Asselborn Mill 10Thick shale walls and traditional round (tortoiseshell shaped) slates from the neighbouring quarry. It has a typical inner courtyard with tower and small bays. Several component parts of the mill are of the period (except for the waterwheels). The interior layout is, however, more recent (while remaining typically rural), particularly the staircase and bedrooms which have lost most of their historical links.

1987: restoration of the mill and adjoining buildings, conversion of hotel rooms, restaurant and museum.

 

To appreciate on location

Asselborn Mill MuseumThe milling facilities are to be discovered in the museum and several statues and period pieces can be found in the dining room.
Flour can still be ground here from time to time.
The ‘Valley of Peace’ monument recently inaugurated in the ‘Domaine d’Asselborn’ is the starting point of World War II memorials route in the Luxembourg Ardennes.
Unfortunately, the historical brochure about the old mill is only available in French and German.

intoHistory TipOur article on the Asselborn Mill and Post House will let you discover the atmosphere of the site from a different angle: “Sparkling river, age-old mill and imperial mail coaches“.

 

Insider Tips

Asselborn Mill MuseumThe setting of the Asselborn mill is exceptional, lost in a wilderness. You will enjoy the tranquility of the place with the sound of rushing water and wild birds. In historical terms, enthusiasts of milling will be delighted to discover the fascinating museum and sturdy old walls of the old watermill. It is only fair to point out however, that the rooms are modernized. A certain amount of imagination is needed to evoke the history of the site, which bears venerable witness to its illustrious past.

 

 

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Facilities

  • 15 bedrooms
  • Gourmet restaurant + Bar
  • Water mill museum
  • Lovely garden alongside the river
  • Wifi
  • Fireplace, terrace
  • Nature walk / trout fishing
  • Spoken languages: French, English, Dutch, German
  • Nearest city: Clervaux (10 min.) and Diekirch (30 min.)
  • Private parking
  • Luxembourg airport: 70 km
  • Dogs allowed (in a couple of bedrooms)
  • Non-smoking interior

In the neighbourhood

Tunnel Hoffelt-Bernistap - canal Meuse Moselle

Bernistap-Hoffelt tunnel entrance, whose completion was interrupted by the Belgian Revolution

To read, watch or listen to

 

intoHistory - To feed the imaginationTo fully appreciate the period atmosphere of the Asselborn Mill, do not hesitate to enhance your stay by reading a few books (nothing beats a good historical novel to bring old stones back to life). Watching a film evoking the era or listening to some period music may also be a good way to transport you back in time… A few suggestions:

Learning and understanding

  • “Musée du moulin à eau et de la meunerie du moulin banal d’Asselborn”, by Léon Nilles (available on location – French and German)
  • “Mill”, by David Macaulay
    Great educational book on the construction and the operating of a traditional watermill. The one David Macaulay describes is located in New Hampshire, but the story could have happened practically anywhere. Beautiful drawings, technical maps, detailed descriptions and an exciting plot (> 15 years and older).
  • “The Techniques of Flour Milling. A Handbook for Millers”, by William Halliwell (1923 – fac simile)
    Comprehensive guide for millers, written at a time where traditional techniques were still in practice. For specialists only (see original edition here).

Period music to be enjoyed on location

  • “Beau soir”, by Claude Debussy
    A little gem of an impressionist air, to be enjoyed along the river at the end of the day, meditating on the destiny of men and the tyranny of passing time, the eternal flow …

 

Some of the links below will enable you to consult the recommended titles directly on Amazon.com. If you decide to purchase one of these titles via this link, please note that intoHistory will receive a small commission on your transaction, which will help towards covering its running costs.

Guests comments

Évaluation selon 4 avis:

Historical authenticity
Ambiance and settings
Quality of welcome
Degree of comfort

Dominique c

16-07-2017

Endroit magique.cadre historique..authenticité..parfait pour se ressourcer...dans la beauté de la nature...accueil très sympathique, restauration de qualité à base très bons produits locaux...

Jean-Marie Halsdorf

02-06-2015

Le Domaine du Moulin d'Asselborn, surpris, une découverte, alors que j'ai visité toutes les communes du pays.
Un domaine avec un potentiel, le personnel dévoué, avec le calme idéal pour se ressourcer, vaut vraiment le détour. On reviendra.

Roland B.

02-06-2015

J'ai passé l'anniversaire de mes 70 ans dans ce merveilleux domaine que je ne connaissais pas auparavant. Découverte surprise, mais très agréable et conviviale. Tous mes invités étaient ravis de la qualité de l'accueil, des repas et des chambres. Nous ne manquerons pas de recommander cette belle adresse !

Gery de Pierpont

05-12-2013

J'ai beaucoup aimé le charme du Vieux Moulin d'Asselborn. Son cadre, en bord de rivière sauvage, est merveilleux. Bel accueil au restaurant, délicieux. Le musée du moulin, dans l'espace même où le meunier était déjà à l'ouvrage il y a mille ans quasi, est particulièrement intéressant. Ses trois roues qui tournent encore, l'humidité des pièces taillées à même le roc, les nombreux outils de meunerie rassemblés par le propriétaire – un pur passionné – confèrent à la visite un goût de "vécu". Pas courant, les musées dans lesquels on peut loger (à l'ancienne) ! Je m'attendais à des chambres plus "historiques" dans leur aménagement, mais leur équipement est parfait. Quel calme !

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Historical authenticity
Ambiance and settings
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Middle Ages Mill Hotel 60-100€/room

For bread lovers

Hotel du Moulin d’Asselborn ***
Maison 158
L-9940   ASSELBORN
Tel. +352 99 86 16
resa@hotelvieuxmoulin.lu
Hotel’s own web site

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