KULMBACH, or CULMBACH, a town of Germany, in the Bavarian province of Upper Franconia, picturesquely situated on the Weisser Main, and the Munich-Bamberg-Hof railway, ii m. N.W. from Bayreuth. Pop. (1900), 9428. It contains a Roman Catholic and three Protestant churches, a museum and several schools. The town has several linen manufactories and a large cotton spinnery, but is chiefly famed for its many extensive breweries, which mainly produce a black beer, not unlike English porter, which is largely exported. Connected with these are malting and bottling works. On a rocky eminence, 1300 ft. in height, to the south-east of the town stands the former fortress of Plassenburg, during the 14th and 15th centuries the residence of the margraves of Bayreuth, called also margraves of Brandenburg-Kulmbach. It was dismantled in 1807, and is now used as a prison. Kulmbach and Plassenburg belonged to the dukes of Meran, and then to the counts of Orlamunde, from whom they passed in the 14th century to the Hohenzollerns, burgraves of Nuremberg, and thus to the margraves of Bayreuth.
See F. Stein, Kulmbach und die Plassenburg in alter und neuer Zeit (Kulmbach, 1903); Huther, Kulmbach und Umgebung ( Kulmbach, 1886) ; and C. Meyer, Quellen zur Geschichte der Stadt Kulmbach (Munich, 1895).
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)