1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Kaiserswerth

KAISERSWERTH, a town in the Prussian Rhine province, on the right bank of the Rhine, 6 m. below Düsseldorf. Pop. (1905), 2462. It possesses a Protestant and a large old Romanesque Roman Catholic church of the 12th or 13th century, with a valuable shrine, said to contain the bones of St Suitbert, and has several benevolent institutions, of which the chief is the Diakonissen Anstalt, or training-school for Protestant sisters of charity. This institution, founded by Pastor Theodor Fliedner (1800–1864) in 1836, has more than 100 branches, some being in Asia and America; the head establishment at Kaiserswerth includes an orphanage, a lunatic asylum and a Magdalen institution. The Roman Catholic hospital occupies the former Franciscan convent. The population is engaged in silk-weaving and other small industries.

In 710 Pippin of Heristal presented the site of the town to Bishop Suitbert, who built the Benedictine monastery round which the town gradually formed. Until 1214 Kaiserswerth lay on an island, but in that year Count Adolph V. of Berg, who was besieging it, dammed up effectually one arm of the Rhine. About the beginning of the 14th century Kaiserswerth, then an imperial city, came to the archbishopric of Cologne, and afterwards to the duchy of Juliers, whence, after some vicissitudes, it finally passed into the possession of the princes of the palatinate, whose rights, long disputed by the elector of Cologne, were legally settled in 1772. In 1702 the fortress was captured by the Austrians and Prussians, and the Kaiserpfalz, whence the young emperor Henry IV. was abducted by Archbishop Anno of Cologne in 1062, was blown up.

See J. Disselhoff, Das Diaconissenmutterhaus zu Kaiserswerth (new ed., 1903; Eng. trans., 1883).