On this day: the first Oktoberfest

Adam_Pferderennen_Oktoberfest_1823Heinrich Adam Das Pferderennen auf dem Münchner Oktoberfest circa 1823.

Horse race at the 1823 Oktoberfest

The German festival, Oktoberfest, now celebrated all over the world, was held for the first time in Munich on the 12th of October, 1810.

Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen Queen of Bavaria circa 1810

Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen, circa 1810.

The festival was held to celebrate the marriage of King Ludwig I to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. The king invited the citizens of Munich to join in festivities held on the fields outside the city gates.

The celebrations continued until the wedding day on the 17th of the month, when horse races were held.

The decision to repeat the horse races the following year developed into what is Oktoberfest today.

Over the years that followed the festival grew and changed, with attractions such as bowling alleys and carnival booths added. There were some interruptions, such as the cancellation in 1813 due to Bavaria being involved in the Napoleonic Wars.

The first parade of breweries was in 1887.

King Ludwig I of Bavaria in Coronation Regalia 1826

King Ludwig I of Bavaria in Coronation Regalia, 1826.

The new Queen became very popular with the people, and earned sympathy for her struggles and admiration for her charitable work.

However, her husband was infamous for his infidelities and went on to abdicate in 1848.


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