Saturday, 9 February 2013

Sepia Saturday 163; St.Moritz;

St. Moritz  Bains 1881

St. Moritz is a resort town in the Engadine valley in Switzerland. It is a municipality in the district of Maloja in the Swiss canton of Graubünden. The highest summit in the Eastern Alps, the Piz Bernina, lies a few kilometres south of the town.
Population: 5,148 (2008)
Elevation: 1,822 m
Area: 28.69 km²
Weather: -13°C, Wind N at 32 km/h, 52% Humidity
Local time: Friday 9:02 pm on 09/02/2013
 Australian time 06/07 am,  +21°C

Votive offerings, swords, and needles from the Bronze Age, were found at the base of the springs in St. Moritz, which indicate that the Celts had already discovered them.
St. Moritz is first mentioned around 1137-39 as ad sanctum Mauricium. The town was named after Saint Maurice, a Coptic Orthodox, and Roman Catholic saint.
Pilgrims travelled to Saint Mauritius, the church of the springs, where they drank from the blessed, bubbling waters of the Mauritius springs in the hopes of being healed. In 1519, the Medici pope, Leo X, promised full absolution to anyone making a pilgrimage to the church of the springs. In the 16th century, the first scientific treatises about the St. Moritz mineral springs were written. In 1535, Paracelsus, the great practitioner of nature cures, spent some time in St. Moritz.


Though St. Moritz  received visitors during the summer, the origins of the winter resort only date back to September 1864, when St. Moritz hotel pioneer, Johannes Badrutt, made a wager with four British summer guests: that they should return in winter and if it was not to their liking, he would pay for the cost of their journey from London and back. If they found St. Moritz attractive in winter, he would invite them to stay as his guests for as long as they wished.

This marked not only the start of winter tourism in St. Moritz but the start of winter tourism in the whole of the Alps. The first tourist office in Switzerland was established the same year in the town. St. Moritz developed rapidly in the late nineteenth century and the first electric light in Switzerland was installed in 1878 at the Kulm Hotel and the first curling tournament on the continent held in 1880.
The first European Ice-Skating Championships were held at St. Moritz in 1882 and first golf tournament in the Alps held in 1889. The first bob run and bob race was held in 1890 and by 1896 St. Moritz became the first town in the Alps to install electric trams and opened the Palace Hotel. In 1906, a horse race was held on snow (1906) and on the frozen lake (1907). The first ski school in Switzerland was established in St. Moritz in 1929.

In 1928 St. Moritz hosted the 1928 Winter Olympic Games and the stadium still stands today. It later hosted the 1948 Winter Olympic Games

Sonja Henie
Sonja Henie was a Norwegian figure skater and film star. She was a three-time Olympic Champion in Ladies Singles, a ten-time World Champion and a six-time European Champion. Wikipedia
Born: April 8, 1912, Oslo
Died: October 12, 1969, Oslo
Height: 1.60 m

The Segantini Museum: dedicated to Giovanni Segantini, a painter that lived the last five years of his life in Engadine. The Segantini Museum is listed as a Swiss heritage site of national significance.
The bobsled run: a very rare natural bob sleigh typically running by mid December each year
Viewing the glacier landscape: there are a number of notable vistas. Much can be seen by descending from Diavolezza to the Morteratsch Glacier.
The 3300 metres high Piz Corvatsch with its ice cave and its eight-kilometer long ski slope down to St.Moritz-Bad.

Returning from the Forest, 1890
In the last evening light a farmwoman, bent over from exertion, returns with a load of wood to the village at the foot of the mountains, where the first lights are already lit. Here, homecoming is a symbol of the loneliness and allegory of death. Segantini’s imagery is programatically determined by the
cycle of the seasons and human life.

St.Moritz today, playground to the rich and famous!!

Please ski over to  Sepia Saturday 163 and enjoy;


  1. An interesting history of St Moritz. We thought it was funny to find an Australian hotel there.

  2. Sonja Henie was the first Olympian I remember seeing on film. That Segantini picture is magnificent.

  3. I think you have taken the easy road this week! There are no pictures of St. Moritz without snow :)

  4. Wow. What an interesting history of an ancient town. I really liked the painting ... why wasn't some guy hauling that big stump of tree, I wonder?

    Thank you for putting this all together for us.

    Kathy M.

  5. Ah to be rich and famous, we'd be there now, vacationing! Ha! Ha! That's a stunning photo, you can just feel her struggle in pulling that load!

  6. I'm guessing this is the nearest I'll ever get to St Moritz, so thanks for the excellent tour de Sepia.

  7. Fascinating. You always learn something new on Sepia Saturday.

  8. Wonderful pictures Titania and thank you so much for picking out the ainting pf the woman trudging home in 1890.

  9. I enjoyed learning the history of St. Merits and all the wonderful images.

  10. I knew about St Moritz's Olympic history,
    but you've clearly demonstrated there is more to this municipality than a few medals.