According to archaeological finds, the history of Weesenstein Castle began as a medieval fortification over 800 years ago. It was first mentioned in a document in 1318. As a result of the so-called Dohna Feud (Dohnasche Fehde), Weesenstein became margravial fiefdom of Meissen and, for more than 350 years, the permanent residence of the Bünau family (Familie von Bünau). In the 15th and 16th century, the Weesenstein line of this family ranked among the most influential and wealthiest noble houses in Saxony, and Weesenstein Castle became the representative centre of the Bünau land. But when baroque Saxony came to a disastrous end, the financial resources of the Bünau family (Familie von Bünau) were exhausted as well, and they had to part with Weesenstein Castle and Barony. The Uckermann barons (Barone von Uckermann), ennobled immediately before, took over as owners of this ground for two generations and kept cultivating especially the garden area. Afterwards in 1830, King Anthony of Saxony (König Anton von Sachsen) acquired Weesenstein Castle for the privy purse of the Wettins. The castle became »royal« and hosted, first of all, many a famous guest under King John (König Johann).
After the First World War, Prince Johann Georg (Prinz Johann Georg) sold the castle and manor to untitled buyers. Later, the Saxon state association for homeland security (Landesverein Sächsischer Heimatschutz) acquired the castle and, in 1934, established the museum, which, since then, existed almost continuously. During the Second World War, the castle premises served as one of the main depots for evacuated art treasures of Dresden. While after 1945, the Weesenstein community had principally been responsible for the castle, today, castle, gardens, and the museum are owned by the Free State of Saxony.
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