Baldone White Castle
Due to its white colour and spectacular architecture, the White Castle is one of Baldone's most beautiful buildings and most remarkable objects. The building is simple though - it has two towers and a large terrace in front. When the castle was built, it also had a beautiful balcony, but it is now simply transformed into windows. Next to the castle is also a fountain and a park. The building began in 1890 but was completed only in 1901. The castle was built for seignior Adam Mickevic as a hunting castle and has been named after the white colour. Original park plants and trees have been partly preserved to the present day decorating the landscape with exotic trees like silver fins, cedar pines, mangrove cork trees, and red oaks. The fountain was restored in 2016 and the park is included in the list of Latvian nature monuments.
During the World War I until the end of 1915 a Russian Army Hospital and later a German Army Hospital occupied the castle. After the World War I the lawful son of Adam Mickevic - Nikolai and his family settled in the castle and rented part of the premises to Baldone resort guests. In summer 1936 and 1937, the premises were rented to the Latvian Society for the fight against tuberculosis and the castle hosted 45 impoverished gymnasts suffering from tuberculosis. Subsequently, a children’s shelter was moved from Kurzeme and arranged in the castle, but in September 1944 German administration moved the shelter to Mercendarbe Manor where there already was a second children’s shelter. Consequently, the liberated premises were turned into a sickbay for German troops.
Between 1945 and 1980, the first department of the Baldone sanatorium – women’s department was in the White Castle. It accommodated 75-80 visitors per month. In 1980, the White Castle became a hospital property. The hospital did not use the premises, but the local kolkhoz “Baldone” set up there their dormitories for builders and guest workers.
In 1985, the Baldone Music School was officially founded in the castle and later in 1993 also the Music Elementary School. When in 1994 during Baldone Music Days the grandson of Adam Mickevic and his wife arrived from America, the castle was officially given to the music elementary school.
An unwritten law suggests that each castle has its own ghost and it turns out that also the White Castle has one. Those who have experienced it say that the ghost is very active but kind-hearted. The ghost becomes active at night and late in the evening, so it is most commonly felt by cleaners and those who leave the building late in the evening. The ghost turns over the note book pages during piano playing, creates different sounds and moves objects, during late autumn evenings it walks around the park. There is no historical evidence of what might have caused the appearance of the ghost if only the fact that in 1915 in the building was an army hospital.
Daugavas iela 23, Baldone, LV-2125
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