Zell (Mosel) Drohnenbild. © Philipp Bohn

Numbers, data, facts about the town of Zell (Mosel)

General information

The town of Zell (Moselle) is the administrative center of the Verbandsgemeinde of Zell, to which a total of 24 local communities on the Mosel and in the Hunsrück belong. With the hospital in the high-altitude district of Barl, the kindergartens in the districts of Zell, Kaimt and Barl as well as the primary school and the integrated comprehensive school, Zell has an important infrastructure that is also of great importance for the surrounding communities. The wine town is nationally known for its "Zeller Schwarze Katz" vineyard. Measured by the area under vines, Zell (Mosel) is one of the largest wine-growing communities in Germany.

Along with Cochem, Zell is one of the two main towns in the Cochem-Zell district. With just over 60,000 inhabitants, Cochem-Zell is - in terms of population - the second smallest district in Rhineland-Palatinate and even the fifth smallest in the entire Federal Republic of Germany.


4,538 ha


4,308 (11/2021)











The history of our wine town

5.000 B.C.

Like the entire Moselle valley, the Zeller Land has been populated continuously since the Neolithic Age.

2.000 B.C.

Finds confirm the settlement in the Kaimt area and on the Barl at that time.

around 500 B.C.

Celtic tribes dominate much of Europe over the preceding farming megalithic cultures. The Treverer tribe settled in the Moselle region.

around 100 B.C.

Many of today's Moselle towns already existed in Celtic times. Place names of Celtic origin (e.g. Kaimt and Merl) indicate this. Celtic fortifications lay on the Beinter Kopf and on the Alteburg in the Altlayer Bachtal. Celtic sanctuaries (often above the village) survived through the Roman period and later often became the first Christian churches.

around 50 B.C.

Like all of Gaul, Trevererland was conquered by Caesar and became Roman. After initial resistance, it was mainly the upper class who assimilated. A century-long phase of economic and cultural prosperity begins, interrupted only by a few uprisings and Germanic invasions.

from 70 AD

At the Moselle crossing (ford) in Zell, before the ascent to the Hunsrück, a rest stop with a smaller port facility and warehouses (cellae) is built.


After the Frankish conquerors had ruled the Moselle for some time, Trier fell as the last Roman bastion. A year later, the Western Roman Empire falls and the Middle Ages begin. Zell and its surroundings now belong to the Frankish region, which Clovis expanded to the west through conquests and made it part of the Frankish Empire.


Adela, who came from the Merovingian nobility, bequeathed her goods in Kaimt to the Benedictine monastery in Pfalzel near Trier.


A certain Herolf donated a vineyard and farmland in Merl to the Lorsch monastery.

around 940

First mention of vineyards in Zell and Kaimt.

from 1142

Establishment of an Augustinian monastery on the Marienburg next to the mother church for the Zeller Hamm.

around 1200

Relocation of the mother church and the deanery to Zell.


Completion of the town fortifications of Zell, of which the round and the square tower as well as the remains of the town wall have been preserved.

around 1285

Founding of a Minorite monastery and a Latin school in Merl.


Zell becomes the administrative seat of an Electoral Trier Oberamt.

1460 - 1593

Numerous Electoral Trier provincial assemblies held in Zell, the town's heyday.


Emperor Maximilian (1493 - 1519) stayed on his way to the Reichstag in Trier in the waiter's shop built in 1481 and received a barrel of Zeller wine as a gift.


The kidnapping of the mayor of Zell, Jakob Schienen, father of the auxiliary bishop of Trier, Nikolais Schienen, led to the famous "Sickingenfeud". When defending Trier against Sickingen's attacks, the Zeller soldiers distinguished themselves in particular: "He staiht ferm, wie en Celler us dem Hamm" (He stands firm like a Zeller from the Hamm).

1535 - 1543

Construction of the Zeller Castle as a secondary residence for the Electors of Trier.

1632 and 1635

Swedish troops capture and plunder Zell.


Destruction of the town and the local fortifications of Zell and Merl in the course of Louis XIV's Reunion Wars.


French revolutionary troops conquer the Rhineland. The Trier Kurstaat dissolves. With the end of feudalism, property of the nobility, monasteries and churches was nationalized and mostly auctioned off. This is how good vineyards in the Zeller Land come into private hands.


In the course of an administrative reform, Zell becomes the seat of the cantonal administration of the canton of Zell.


End of the French period. In 1816 Zell became a Prussian district town.


A major fire destroyed 152 houses in the old town and left 900 people homeless.


For the first time the location name "Zeller Schwarze Katz" is used.


The Moselle Valley Railway ("Saufbähnchen"), from Trier to Bullay along the right bank of the Moselle, is completed. In 1964 the line was dismantled.


Reincorporation of Kaimt. Development and connection of Kaimt through the construction of the Moselle bridge and the expansion of the B53 in the direction of Koblenz. Construction of the pedestrian bridge (until then there was only the "Ponte" (ferry) between Zell and Kaimt).


Dissolution of the district of Zell, Zell comes to the district of Cochem-Zell, Traben-Trarbach to the district of Wittlich-Bernkastel. Incorporation of Merl and development of the Barl as a residential and industrial area.