Aloysia Meyer

After the Fribourg clergy categorically forbade all women to enter the festivities in 1829, a woman took part in a Federal Shooting Festival for the first time in 1932 in Lucerne, namely 14 year old Aloysia Meyer.

The picture shows the girl as she stands at a shooting range, which is indicated by the target shown at the right edge of the image. Her gaze is focused on the rifle she holds in her hands. The girl wears the traditional costume, as was usual at festive occasions at that time. She has put several cards in her attractively decorated hat. Shooting booklets were not yet used until 1880. The results of the hits were noted on a sheet.

The then unusual event has left a lasting impression. A lithograph portraying the girl could be purchased for 16 francs according to the «Federal shooting Almanac for the years 1832 & 1833»: «This [...] portrait depicts the 14-year-old daughter of the valiant shooter Meyer of Malters, in the canton of Lucerne, at the moment when she is lifting up the weapon, prepearing to shoot. This girl has also been generally admired at the Federal Shooting Festival in Lucerne, both because of the dexterity with which she knows how to handle the weapon, and for her concise shooting.» (pages 46-47).

Subsequently, the educationalist Friedrich Ludwig Jahn (1778 - 1852), is quoted, with regard to the wish that «[the] Swiss women would like to take heed of the words of the good German man»«Great is the destiny of the woman! Education, though, and housekeeping is their first business; But when required, the girl and the woman can help to defend the fatherland. [...] They want to die with their husbands, lovers, and brothers for freedom, or help to win.»

Jakob Schwegler created the preliminary drawing for the lithograph, which is followed by the addition «del.» [for delineavit, has drawn] after the name. In 1821, he worked with Lukas Ahorn to create the lion monument in Lucerne. The lithograph originates from the Eglin brothers of Lucerne.