General Specialities History
Canton: Glarus (CL)
To the south of the picturesque Walensee the little canton of Glarus, occupies the basin of the River Linth, one of the most beautiful transverse valleys in the Alps, with the ridge of Glarnisch (2332 m17651 ft) rearing above it on the west and the massive bulk of TOdi (3614 m/11,858 ft) closing its southern end.
Surrounded on three sides by mountains, the canton is linked with the neighbouring canton of Uri by a road which runs south-west from Linthal over the Klausen pass.
The 37,000 inhabitants of the canton (area 685 sq. km/264 sq. miles), the land of St Fridolin, who appears on Glarus’s coat of arms, are an independent-minded race formed by this rugged mountain world. Industry (in particularly the cotton industry; spinning, weaving, coloured prints) established itself here at an early stage, using the water-power provided by the Linth.
The main valley is served by a branch railway line from Rapperswil to Glarus and Linthal, connecting with the main line from Zurich to Chur at ZiegelbrOcke. From Linthal there is a cableway to the traffic-free resort of Braunwald, and there is a bus service from Schwanden to Elm in the Semi valley.
Local culinary specialities are Schabzieger, a herb cheese, and Glamor Pasteten (fruit tarts). From 1288 Glarus was under Habsburg jurisdiction, and after repeated threats to its independence became the sixth canton to join the Confederation. Since 1387 the cantonal meeting (Landesgemeinde) has been held every year in the Zaunplatz in Glarus on the first Sunday in May.
In 1388 the men of Glarus finally shook off the Habsburg yoke by their victory in the Battle of Weis. During the Reformation the canton was divided into two cantons, one Protestant and the other Catholic, but the two halves were reunited under the 1836 constitution.
Up the Linth valley From the broad mouth of the valley at ZiegelbrUcke (alt. 428 m/1404 ft) the road runs south to Linthal (alt. 651 m/2136 ft; 28 km/17 miles) and from there over the Klausen pass to Altdorf in the canton of Uri. From Niederurnen 1432 m/1417 ft; pop. 3500) there is a footpath up the Rebburg to the Schltissli (Burg Oberwindegg), with fine views of the Linth plain and the Walensee.
The path then continues to Oberurnen (432 m/ 1417 ft) with a view of the Glarus Alps. In Nafels (440 m/1444 ft; pop. 3700) is the finest building in the canton, the Freulerpalast with a magnificent Renaissance doorway and Early Baroque interior.
Built by Colonel Kaspar Freuler, commander of the Swiss guard in France (who was ennobled by Louis XIII). it has been occupied by the Cantonal Museum since 1942 and contains interesting collections (documents from Glarus’s textile printing industry) and special exhibitions.
The Roman Catholic parish church St Fridolin and Hilarius (1778-1781) is modelled on the parish church at Schwyz. The adjoining chapel commemorates the soldiers who died in the Battle of Weis in 1388 against the Austrians. There is an interesting 17th c. Capuchin monastery Maria Burg.
From here a steep road climbs to a charming little lake, the Obersoe 1989 W3245 ft).