Pre-Christian Period Celtic settlement in the region of the village of Kempraten (discovery of graves and stone axes).
Approximately 50 AD-250 AD Roman settlement in Kempraten (present territory of both municipalities, Rapperswil and Jona), approximately 700x250 meters i.e. 2300x820 ft.
Approximately 285 AD Invasion of the Alemannians
700 AD-800 AD Construction of churches in the villages of Kempraten, Busskrich and St. Dionys.
741 AD / 744 AD Reference to Centoprato and Centoprata in the deed of donation from Landolt’s wife Beata to the nunnery on Lützelau island and to the abbey of St Gall.
775 AD First reference to the hamlet of ”Vurmheresvilari“ (Wurmsbach).
834 AD Reference in a monastery deed of St Gall to farms located in present Jona.
1091 Legendary year of the foundation of the town of Rapperswil.
around the year 1200 The nobles of Rapperswil, overlords of the monasteries of Einsiedeln and St Gall, as well as church advocates of Einsiedeln relocate their seat from Old-Rapperswil (present Altendorf) to Rapperswil’s rocky promontory.
1227 Count Heinrich (Wandelbar) of Rapperswil launches the Foundation of the Cistercian abbey Wettingen.
1229 First known documentary reference to Rapperswil (Zürcher Urkundenbuch). The settlement area is surrounded by town walls and reaches from the hermit’s house to the municipal hall and the castle.
1233 The lords of the castle are appointed counts.
1253 The castle church becomes parish church and is separated from the old parish in Busskirch.
1259 Count Rudolf IV of Rapperswil launches the Foundation of the Cistercian nunnery’s in Wurmsbach.
1283 The dynasty of counts becomes extinct due to paternal lineage. Rapperswil enters the Habsburg-Laufenburg family through the marriage of Countess Elisabeth.
1288 The Counsil obtains a town seal (two stalked and five-leaved roses).
14th century The city expands towards east. The main square is constructed, as well as the alleys Kluggasse, Webergasse and soon the two Halsgassen (upper and lower) with their tower (Halsturm) forming the eastern border.
1350 Count Johann II of Laufenburg was punished for his participation in the Zurich night of murder. The first mayor of Zurich, Rudolf Brun, has Rapperswil destroyed.
1354 Duke Albrecht of Austria purchases the impoverished town. Rapperswil experiences a period of prosperity under Habsburg as a stronghold against the Federation. The town is awarded market rights, jurisdiction and free Schultheiss elections.
1358 The audacious idea to build a wooden bridge over the narrowest passage between both shores of Lake Zurich is implemented by only 19 year-old Duke Rudolf IV (“The ingenious”), who also founds the University of Vienna a few years later and terminates the St. Stephen’s Cathedral. The wooden bridge would serve as a transport route for five centuries.
1388 62 people from Rapperswil fall in the battle of Näfels on the side of Austria. The town sustains under the siege of 6000 Zurich people.
1402 The Holy Spirit Hospital in Rapperswil adopts the vines on the hill Gubel.
1415 King Sigismund, who had summoned the Council of Constance (1414-1418) and had rebuilt the unity of the church, declares Rapperswil a free imperial city.
1442 At the age of 27, king and future emperor Friedrich III visits Rapperswil. He offers his support in the dispute concerning the heritage of the last count of Toggenburg and provokes a new alliance of Rapperswil with Austria.
1443/44 Members of the Confederation lay siege to Rapperswil.
1458 Swiss confederates returning from the Plappart War in Constance fraternize with the people from Rapperswil, which shortly after leads to the official separation from Austria. The sole authorities leading the town and its farms are now the Schultheiss and the Council.
1464 Rapperswil forms a defensive alliance with Uri, Schwyz, Unterwalden and Glarus settles the joining of the Swiss Confederation.
1531 As a result of the Protestant Reformation, newly converted Protestants invade the municipal hall. The second battle in Kappel indicates a turning point: Rapperswil returns to its former faith and starts building a catholic church.
1607 Benediction of the Capuchin monastery at the Endingerhorn.
1615 Schwanen Notes by architect Walcher (of blessed memory) reveal that the "Old Schwanen", today located on Marktgasse 27, was owned by the following proprietors over the past centuries: Caspar Tschudi of Gräpplang.
1616 Schwanen Proprietor of the Hotel Schwanen: Junker Tschudi Wolfgang Dietrich and his wife Giel of Gielsberg Catharina
1619 Schwanen The property was sold to the Pfäfers Abbey. Only the part today constituting the "Steinbock" restaurant was sold to Schultheiss Johann Ludwig Kunz.
1623 Schwanen Proprietor of the Hotel Schwanen: Nägeli C., Lehmann
1656 Rapperswil withstands the nine-week siege of the Zurich General Johann Rudolf Werdmüller and his armed force of over 7000 men. Also the farms in Kempraten, Busskirch and Wagen are utterly devastated and looted.
1657 Schwanen Proprietor of the Hotel Schwanen: Tschudi Jacob, Lehmann and his wife Gallatin Anna
1712 Being guaranteed religious liberty, the people of Rapperswil open the town gates to the protestant troops in the second battle of Villmergen: Zurich, Bern and Glarus would later serve as refuges.
1740 The Council of Rapperswil orders the construction of a bridge over the Jona River. It is replaced by a covered wooden bridge for the Rickenstrasse (1829-1911). The state covers the costs for the bridge in 1875 in favour of the municipality.
1798 Invasion of the French under General Nouvion. A liberty tree is planted on the main square. Rapperswil becomes part of the Canton of Linth. Rapperswil and Jona are divided into two autonomous municipalities. The agrarian communes demand independence.
1798 Schwanen Proprietor of the Hotel Schwanen: Mayor Helbling Jost Ferdinand
1799 The French withdraw over the bridge, before 8000 Austrians invade Rapperswil the following day. The British Captain William moors with a warship. The Swiss legion and the Russians camp in front of the town gates. The people suffer from severe war losses. Jona convenes its first municipal assembly, resulting in the declaration of independence.
1803 Switzerland receives its Constitution through Napoleon’s Acts of Mediation, who simultaneously dictates the creation of the Canton of St Gall. Rapperswil and Jona become emancipated municipalities.
1803 Christian Näf of St Gall builds one of the first cotton mills of the country near the hammer mill at the creek of Rapperswil.
1804 The determination of municipal borders is a delicate chapter in the history of Rapperswil. Jona calls for the whole area covered by their parishes. A mutual agreement is not reached; the borders are thus determined by the governing council and are valid up to present.
1808 The distribution of the common grounds leads towards further disputes. The people of Rapperswil agree to the distribution of the pastures, but not of the woodlands. The woods are therefore still in possession of the people of Rapperswil today. In 1808, Jakob Braendlin of Stäfa operates the cotton mill with his own machinery located in the paper mill.
1811 The Braendlin brothers establish a larger cotton mill. The industrialists become citizens of Jona in 1815. One year later, master tanner Hermann Freudenberg sets up a leather factory on the ledge.
1815 Opening of the first public school on the Lenggis Hill.
1829/1833 The medieval town walls fall. The Rickenstrasse leads into Rapperswil, which is further expanding towards east and into the municipal territory of Jona.
1835 The first steamboat (“Minerva“) moors in Rapperswil. It had been ordered from Manchester by two pioneers of Rapperswil.
1837/1840 A harbor is built in Rapperswil. The inner harbor at the fish market square is heaped up.
(1832-)1842 Schwanen For over 10 years, the Fuchs brothers (Fidel & Thomas) have owned many connected buildings in Rapperswil, which now constitute the Hotel "Anker" including its yard. The propriety is insured for 12,000 guilders – sub number 15 – and borders
1. upon Ulrich Oswald and Conrad Huber's premises named "Steinbock" in the mornings,
2. upon the harbor at noon,
3. upon the granary with its living space and the Endinger square in the evenings,
4. upon the Marktgasse at midnight…
(quoted from the property security register and translated from German)
1845 Schwanen Municipal Council Minutes of January 27, 1845
The Municipal Council attests the handing over of the Hotel "Anker" for 8850 guilders from insolvent Carl Maria Fuchs to Major Xaver Curti. The Chancellery is appointed to record the handing over in the proper protocol in accordance with the letter from the bankruptcy commission dated January 25.
Municipal Council Minutes of February 3, 1845
Shall the Hotel "Anker" be renamed "Schwanen" and operated by Major Xaver Curti, a permit is to be requested from the Small Council by submitting appropriate documentation.
1848 Founding of the “Wochenblatt vom Seebezirk und Gaster” (later “Linth”), a non-profit organization from the lake area, as well as the ”Credit- und Sparanstalt” (bank of the Linth and Sargans area).
1859 The first railroad line Rüti-Rapperswil-Wesen induces the local era of modern public transportation.
1859 Schwanen November 3. Major Xaver Curti, proprietor of the Hotel Curti, sells the Schwanen to landlord Josef Huber of Hünenberg.
1862 Schwanen Joseph Huber is financially troubled and files for bankruptcy. Regina Curti-Helbing, widowed by the former proprietor Major Xaver Curti, purchases the Schwanen and immediately resells it to Commander Heinrich von Tobel of Rapperswil.
1866 Swiss Confederate singing festival in Rapperswil.
1867 Agriculture business launches the foundation of milk and herdsmen’s cooperatives: Kempraten (1867), Busskirch (1868) and Jona (1871), an agricultural association of Rapperswil-Jona (1886) and a dairy in Lenggis (1886).
1868 A Polish liberty column is erected on the Lindenhof in the presence of 10,000 Polish people. In 1869, a rental agreement for the castle between the municipality and Count Ladislaus Plater-de-Broel of Kilchberg is signed for a period of 99 years.
1869 First wooden-wheeled velocipede.
1870 Opening of the first Polish National Museum created by Polish emigrants in Rapperswil. The museum is transferred to Warsaw in 1927.
1874/1876/1910 The Jona River bursts its banks and the village is flooded.
1877 Silk factory owner Heinrich Weidmann of Selnau establishes a paper mill in the old mill of Rapperswil (new construction in the Grüzenareal; most important industrial company of the city ever since).
1878 Opening of the of the railroad line Rapperswil-Pfäffikon accorss the lake dam built of stone.
1882 The parish church is on fire (re-benedicted in 1885)
1886 Jona is the largest municipality of the Canton of St Gall that is dedicated to wine production (86.21 hectares).
1892 First automobile – a steam velocipede carriage – passes Rapperswil. The first grammophone is presented the same year.
1893 Opening of the railroad station in Rapperswil.
1894 Opening of the railroad line Rapperswil-Meilen-Zurich on the east shore of Lake Zurich.
1900 Schwanen January 24. Heinrich von Tobel sells the Schwanen to Gottlieb König of Bern.
1901 Schwanen Gottlieb König suffers misfortune and the propriety is sold by bankruptcy auction. Title creditor Emma Vontobel of Meilen takes over the propriety.
1902 Founding of the power station (joint-stock company) in Jona.
1903 Founding of a private gasworks (taken over by the municipality in 1908)
1907 Schwanen Emma Vontobel of Meilen hands the property over to Gustav Himpel of Rapperswil. A few days later, Catharina Roth-Lumpert of Rapperswil takes over the Hotel from Gustav Himpel.
1908 Jona is connected to the railroads in Bollingen.
1912 Schwanen Catharina Roth-Lumpert becomes insolvent. The Hotel is auctioned to the highest bidders, Albert Leemann's (of blessed memory) inheritors of Meilen. They sell the propriety to Hans Schärer, factory owner of Rapperswil, the very same day.
1913 First rose garden near the harbor created (pergola) by the Verkehrs- und Verschönerungsverein Rapperswil und Umgebung, the tourist office of Rapperswil.
1914 Schwanen The Hotel Schwanen appears in the  property security register as the only insurance number after its reconstruction.
1919 The Knie brothers choose Rapperswil as headquarters of their Swiss national Circus Knie.
1924 First radio sets.
1924 Schwanen Major Hans Schärer, factory owner of Rapperswil, sells the propriety to Chef Johan Grünefelder of St. Moritz. The sales contract includes a rental agreement with Wilhelm Leuzinger-Hofer, cinema owner and proprietor of the "Hecht" restaurant in Rapperswil.
1930 Schwanen After Grünefelder's death, his inheritors sell the hotel to Thophil Schmutz-Moesch, bakery and confectionery owner of Basel. The new proprietor transforms the Hotel Schwanen into the major and most memorable building at the square.
1942 Ferdinand Fürer is elected the first full-time mayor of Rapperswil.
1946 The first bus route Rapperswil-Jona-Eschenbach-Rüti is established by Verkehrs- und Verschönerungsverein Rapperswil und Umgebung, the tourist office of Rapperswil.
1953 First televisions.
1955 Schwanen The Schwanen is sold to Erwin Schmutz-Schwegler, born in 1917 in Rapperswil. He manages the Hotel until he passes away on February 16, 1959.
1960 Schwanen His wife and his son inherit the Hotel Schwanen.
1961 Opening of a private artificial ice rink (indoor ice rink of the municipalities of Rapperswil and Jona in 1986). Rapperswil and Jona join the public waste disposal system of the Zurich uplands (KEZO).
1962 Opening of the Knies Children’s Zoo.
1964 Opening of the retirement home of Rapperswil and Jona at the Meienberg.
1969 Schwanen July 5. The inheritors (see 1960) sell the newly founded joint-stock company, the Hotel Schwanen AG. The shareholders are:
- Hans Dietrich, master painter from Rapperswil
- Max Brüllhardt, owner of the Hotel "Freihof" from Rapperswil
- Dr Arwed Egli, chiropractor from Rapperwil
- Quirino Riva, architect from Rapperswil
1972 Opening of the School of Engineering Rapperswil (HTL). Rapperswil is awarded the building land for the mutual project of the Cantons of Zurich, St Gall, Schwyz and Glarus by the political municipality.
1976 Opening of the vocational school building on the Stadthofplatz square for business and industrial apprentices (costs: 10 million Swiss Francs). The telecommunications service of Rapperswil (Telecom PTT) moves into a new building.
1979 Jona receives two railroad stations: Jona-Dorf and Kempraten (Blumenau in 1984).
1981 Opening of the social and cultural community center ”Kreuz“ in Jona.
1984 Parking “Schanz“ is put into service.
1985 The road construction from Rüti to St.Dionys is terminated – the prolongation to Schmerikon is still to be constructed. Opening of the scented rose garden, accessible to the blind and disabled on the deck of the parking “Schanz”.
1986 Lotte Stiefel (1898-1986) declares to give her property Grünfels to the political municipality of Jona in her last will. The property has been serving for social and cultural functions since 1992 in dedication to the deceased woman.
1988/1990 Renovation of the castle (costs: 7 million Swiss Francs).
1990 Retirement and nursing home Bühl in Jona is put into operation. The former Geberit factory in Rapperswil is taken over by the foundation Alte Fabrik.
1992 Opening of the coliseum in the Grünfeld of Jona (costs: 11.9 million Swiss Francs). Local referendum for the consolidation of the municipal sewage treatment of Rapperswil and Jona (costs: 40 million Swiss Francs).
1993 The people of Rapperswil approve of a loan of 13 million Swiss Francs for the construction of an underground parking garage (224 parking lots) near the fish market square.
1993 Schwanen Total renovation of the Hotel Schwanen
1994 Schwanen Reopening of the Hotel Schwanen, which is still owned by the Hotel Schwanen AG today. Architect Quirino Riva spares no expenses and thus indisputably turns the hotel into the major and most memorable building at the square again. The hotel is managed by Mrs Margrit Riva-Toller.
from 1994 The continuation of the chronicle is in progress.