History of the building
Even before the construction of the city wall, there was already a building here, with its rearward-facing cellar located directly between both lots (Auer Gasse 7). In the first half of the 17th century the partially underground building at Auer Gasse 5 was constructed. The 17th century began on 01 January 1601 and ended on 31 December 1700. During this time, approximately 22 wars were fought in Europe, culminating with the religious and dynastic tensions in the thirty-years war.
Some reconstruction took place in the 19th and 20th centuries. As a part of the de-fortifcation process, the city wall, which was located behind the lots of Auer Gasse 5 und 7, was partially demolished. This led to an enlargement of the foundation of the property behind the commercial buildings. The buildings were then demolished in 1957-58 and were replaced by newly constructed buildings.
In 1934, the facade of the building changed. The previous owner, Karl Jacob, sold the house to Robert Rothamel from Asbach and he moved his bookstore from Auer Gasse 6 across the street to Auer Gasse 5. A new entry way was constructed in the middle of the building with shop windows on each side. With this change, the cellar under the living room on the ground floor was completely closed and filled.
Today's owners turned the former commercial building into their own house in 1999. This house is located in the backyard, about 5 meters behind the buildings at Auer Gasse 5 and 7, located above an older cellar. This cellar is a large barrel-vaulted room and is connected to the cellar of Auer Gasse 5 by a tunnel. This cellar used to have a side entrance, which has long since been closed up, into Auer Gasse 7, and a more recently closed annex room.
The annex room was filled and sealed in 1990 when some reconstruction work was being done in Auer Gasse 7. The unusual location of the cellar and annex room between the two lots indicate that a building predates the city of Schmalkalden. This cellar-like structure on the lower level is located directly in the middle of two properties, in complete disregard of the border between the two lots. Another clue, which indicates the very old age of the structure, is its close proximity to the city wall. This proximity to the city wall contradicts the purpose of a city wall as a fortification. The only way to explain this phenomenon is to assume that this cellar was built before the construction of the city wall in 1200. (Foundation of the Incan Empire in Peru with Cusco as the capital)
After having many different owners, the current owners renovated the front-facing building in 1996, bringing it up to modern standards and renovating the attic. At first, the first three floors were rented out as apartments and later holiday flats.