Medieval truck-stop in krakau in Peissen

Medieval Truck-Stop excavated

Where to park your horse? What is on the daily menu? Archaeologists have found the remains of a long-haul truck-stop near Peissen in Sachsen–Anhalt on the road between Hannover and Dresden.

Map of Krakau - a deserted village near Peissen
The location of Krakau near Peissen

700 years ago the village of Krakau near Peissen was located right on a medieval highway. Here the archaeologists have found the remains of a truck-stop, where horses could be parked and fed, while drivers dipped into the daily fare on the menu.

The archaeologists have so-far uncovered a paved “parking-lot” and the outline of several stalls. Judging from the ground-plans these seem to have been lightly built, tells Susanne Friedrich, archaeologist from the LMU (Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München). “Presumably the villagers have come up with the idea of serving snacks and light meals to the passers-by; this may have generated a significant extra income”, she adds.

The truck-stop was located next to a medieval road, which has also been uncovered. Here the archaeologists have found tracks of a cart. The village was built in the 9th century in a region peopled by Slavs. The settlement existed for 400 years and was home to about 200 individuals. However in the 14th century the village was abandoned – probably due to a mixture of war, famine and pestilence.

a medieval bone button from the deserted village in Krakau near Peissen
A medieval bone button from the deserted village in Krakau near Peissen

The archaeologists have also found 15 houses with brick stone-cellars, a stone-walled well and a kiln. In addition more than 2000 stray finds have been catalogued, amongst which are Slavic ceramics, earrings out of bronzebone buttons, a spur and a silver penny. The name of the settlement “Krakau” may be found in written sources and is still used as the name of a field.

The excavation is part of a so-called rescue-dig prompted by a 37 km long gas pipeline between Peissen and Bobbau. The excavations are currently being wrapped up. It has been carried out in the regi of the Landesmuseum für Vorgeschichte in Halle.


Die Mittelalterliche Wüstung Krakau bei Peissen

Imbiss für Langstrecken-Kutscher vor 700 Jahren