Sinsheim is a town in southwestern Germany, in the Rhine Neckar Area of the state Baden-Württemberg about 22 kilometers southeast of Heidelberg and about 28 kilometers northwest of Heilbronn in the district Rhein-Neckar. It consists of a city center and 11 suburbs with a total population of 35,605 (as of December 2006). Its area encompasses . The Elsenz, an unnavigable left-bank tributary of the Neckar, flows through the town, reaching the Neckar at Neckargemünd.
The region around Sinsheim has been settled since 700,000 BC, as shown by the finding of the fossil Homo heidelbergensis in the village of Mauer, about 12 km (7 miles) north of Sinsheim. The Romans ruled the area from 90 AD to 260 AD. The city was possibly founded in about 550 AD by the Frankish nobleman Sunno. It was first historically mentioned in 770 AD in the Codex of the cloister Lorsch. Since 1192, the town had city rights, a privilege first granted by Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor.
Sinsheim has been a rather poor town throughout the ages, and has been affected heavily by wars from the 16th to the 18th century. Sinsheim-born revolutionary Franz Sigel became a famous Union general in the American Civil War.
The Elsenz Valley Railway and Sinsheim station were opened in 1868 and the nearby Steinsfurt–Eppingen line was opened in 1900; electricity and public water pipes were introduced into the city from 1910 on. The World Wars and the Great Depression kept Sinsheim from growing until the A6 Autobahn was built in 1968. It connected Sinsheim to national and international roads, with Mannheim, Stuttgart, Frankfurt am Main, Heilbronn, Heidelberg, Ludwigshafen all now within 1 hour by car. While traditionally being an agricultural town, the highway made it into a small industrial center, but it has been hit by recession and international outsourcing in recent years.
The numbers are estimates, census results(¹) or official data of the statistical offices (only primary residences).
¹ census results
Population of the suburbs
as of 31 December 2004