The stately half-timbered house, referred to simply as “Storchen,” was once the city palace of the Lords of Liebenstein. This noble family had holdings in the Göppingen area since the 15th century, especially in Jebenhausen. The coat of arms of the Lords of Liebenstein, a shield divided by silver and black bars, is still visible above the entrance door. The south wall of the house is identical to the inner city wall, explaining its thickness and the   arrow-slit-like windows.

The house in its current form is dated to the year 1536 and is one of the few old buildings that were not destroyed in the city fire of 1782. Parts of the building are even older. Furthermore, archaeological finds made during the renovation of the house demonstrate a long settlement continuity in this area, extending far beyond the city’s founding in the 13th century. Carolingian ceramic fragments are the oldest artifacts found here.

From 1781 onwards, the ownership of the house changed frequently. In 1850, innkeeper Georg Bantel purchased the house and established a wine tavern inside. A social club formed there called “Storchiana.” Thus, the name “Storchen” became associated with the house. An alternate explanation for the house’s name lies in storks that settled with their nests on the roof of the picturesque house.

In 1938, the building was purchased by the city from its private owners. The former “Liebenstein city palace” was opened as the “Storchen” Municipal Museum in July 1949, housing artifacts related to the history of the city and the district from its beginnings to the present day. Another focus of the museum’s permanent exhibition is the collection of historical toys, as Göppingen was and still is the headquarters of various toy manufacturers. The most famous company is, of course, the model train manufacturer Märklin. In addition, the museum presents multiple changing special exhibitions annually on various topics related to Göppingen. A visit is definitely worthwhile.