Hinter der Wieke is the name long-standing local residents use for the area in front of the half-timbered houses south of the Paulinenquelle spring. The western end of this area culminates in a point. It once housed the whole salt yard "Salzhof".
The name probably comes from the word Wik, which can mean a trading place (in this case for salt). One of the streets branching off the famous Hellweg used to curve around past the salt yard. If you look on a map, the properties on the edge of this area (odd numbers from 1 to 11) form the beginning of Lange Strasse.
Klein Venedig – Little Venice – is the half-timbered, gabled house which juts out right by, and even slightly over, the River Salze. In days gone by, dyers rinsed linen in the salt water between the seven pillars driven into the river bed to support the superstructure.
Linen weaving was an important source of income for many Salzuflen residents until the early 10th century. The house was built in 1625, during the Thirty Years War.
The properties at Lange Strasse 3 and 5 were constructed in 1590 (no. 3) and 1650 for wealthy townsmen who farmed smallholdings. Salzuflen had a population of approximately 2,000 in 1590. 60 years later, in 1650, it had shrunk to around 900. This was due to the impact of the war, looting by bands of soldiers, and the plague (1636), which alone claimed 450 lives and drove many residents away. You can encounter one of those who remained next door at Lange Strasse 7. One of the town’s most attractive half-timbered houses, its builders carved their names – IOHAN LOOFHER ET ANNA RESEN – into the beam above the gateway for posterity. Unfortunately, the beam was removed many years ago.
From 1615 until his death in 1657, Johann Loofher was the pastor of the parish of Salzuflen, which had been independent since 1531 (Lutheran until 1605, then Reformed). During the plague in 1636, he and the mayor – Johann Veger (to whom a commemorative oak is dedicated in the town’s woods) – organised a helpful guild of brothers, which remained in existence for another two centuries.
The year in which the house was built can be found in two lines of Latin (chronodistich) on the beam supporting the second floor. The raised letters are also Roman numerals: I = 1, V = 5, L = 50, C = 100 and D = 500. Together, they make up the year 1621. The chronodistich translates as: ‘May our house always be blessed with harmony and our hearth be constantly aglow. The Lord will provide for us.’