Steingebronn (The municipality of Gomadingen), The county of Reutlingen
The castle in Steingebronn was probably built around the middle or during the second half of the 13th century. A rather possible reason for its construction might be the withdrawal of the so-called Speth family from Münsingen, which was due to the expansion of Württemberg further to the south. Said family was first mentioned in 1248 when they sold a meadow in Marbach. Until 1263 they called themselves “of Münsingen.” In 1276, the village of Steingebronn and the neighboring town of Dottingen were owned by a certain H(einricus) miles de Stainibrunn dictus cognomina Spa(e)te. The village became the family’s new center of power in the 14th century, but split again in 1364 when an independent line of the Speth family appears to have called themselves “of Ehestetten.” Afterwards the castle in Steingebronn lost its former importance and in 1562, Duke Christoph acquired Hans Ludwig Speth’s entire Steingebronn property, including the neighboring communities. Nevertheless, the Speth family experienced enormous social advancement in the late Middle Ages, because the majority of its members held important positions in the service of the House of Württemberg.
Another interesting fact about Steingebronn is that there appear to have been pre-historic barrows. Archaeological finds dating back to the Merovingian dynasty indicate even earlier settlement activity. A place called Ad Stainigebrunnon, where there was a “stony spring,” was first mentioned in records of the Zwiefalten monastery in 1100. Researchers cannot make any more assumptions about the castle’s time of use or its eventual demise, but its absence in cartographic sources indicates an early abandonment.