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The fishermen of Bergheim
A series of 16 photographs

From the exhibition catalogue June-August 2012:

"The fishermen of Troisdorf-Bergheim look back on a long history. 1,025 years ago, they were granted fishing rights for the river Sieg and the right bank of the Rhine between Beuel and Mondorf by the Vilicher Abbess Adelheid. The fishing fraternity that developed in the course of the Middle Ages represented a guild-like community of life, faith and work. A total of 14 families or "tribes" belonged to the Bergheim fishermen. Nine of these families are still represented in the brotherhood today. 

In 2012, the oldest fishing fraternity in Germany still holds the fishing rights on the Rhine and Sieg and is very much alive with just under 400 members. Its history represents a piece of Rhenish social and everyday history.

Photographer Frank Hoffmann has portrayed some of the many members of the fishing fraternity. His well-crafted black-and-white photographs are current snapshots. They illustrate the photographer's perspective on the faces of people whose families have shaped social and economic life in the region at the mouth of the Siegmündung since the Middle Ages. 


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