Canton of fricktal

Kanton Fricktal
Canton of Fricktal
Canton of the Helvetic Republic

Helvetic Republic in 1802,
showing Fricktal in yellow, centre
Capital Laufenburg (to Sept 1802)
Rheinfelden (after Sept 1802)
 -  Helv. Rep. established April 12, 1798
 -  Fricktal annexed to
    Helvetic Republic
February 20, 1802
 -  Helv. Rep. disestablished February 19, 1803

Fricktal was a canton of the Helvetic Republic from February 1802 to February 1803, consisting of that part of the Breisgau (in Habsburg Further Austria) south of the Rhine. Now, the territories of Fricktal form the districts of Rheinfelden and Laufenburg in the canton of Aargau.

In 1799, a year after the proclamation of the Helvetic Republic, French Revolutionary troops marched into the Fricktal. Thanks to good relations with leading French and Swiss politicians, the brothers Karl and Sebastian Fahrländer from Ettenheim and some colleagues were able to proclaim the creation of an independent canton of Fricktal, relying on the treaties of Campo Formio (1797) and Lunéville (1801) for the legal basis of this proclamation.

A constitution was written in the rectory of Eiken in December 1801; on 20 February 1802 the new canton was finally declared, with Laufenburg as its capital. This impetuous action of the governor Sebastian Fahrländer met with some criticism, however; his opponents met with community representatives in a guesthouse in Frick in September 1802 — the governor was unseated and the capital was relocated to Rheinfelden.

Despite intense diplomatic efforts by the protectors of Fricktal on 19 February 1803 to retain the canton's right of existence, exactly a year after its foundation, Napoleon Bonaparte decreed its merger with the cantons of Aargau and Baden on 19 March, in the Act of Mediation, disestablishing the Helvetic Republic.


This article incorporates information from the Deutsch World Heritage Encyclopedia.


  • Patrick Bircher: Der Kanton Fricktal — Bauern, Bürger und Revolutionäre an der Wende vom 18. zum 19. Jahrhundert; Forum Fricktal, Laufenburg, 2002; ISBN 3-9522417-0-9

External links

  • Fricktal in Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.
  • (German) Jubiläumswebsite Kanton Fricktal

Coordinates: 47°34′N 7°52′E / 47.567°N 7.867°E / 47.567; 7.867

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