Cannstatt, which was incorporated with Stuttgart in 1903, attracts numerous visitors owing to its beautiful situation on the Neckar and its saline and chalybeate springs.
Its importance, however, is of comparatively modern growth and in the early history of Wurttemberg it was overshadowed by Cannstatt, the central situation of which on the Neckar seemed to mark it out as the natural capital of the country.
Owing to the rapid increase in the traffic, a new harbour at the mouth of the Neckar was opened in 1898.
Behind the Friedrichsbau is the Altan (161 o), or castle balcony, from which is obtained a view of great beauty, extending from the town beneath to the heights across the Neckar and over the broad luxuriant plain of the Rhine to Mannheim and the dim contours of the Hardt Mountains behind.
An army of South Germans in the Breisgau, after an unsuccessful attempt to invade Alsace, moved northward to the Neckar valley with the intention of uniting with Bournonville, who was moving up the Rhine to meet them.
Bounded on the south and west by the valley of the Rhine, to which its declivities abruptly descend, and running parallel to, and forming the counterpart of the Vosges beyond, it slopes more gently down to the valley of the Neckar in the north and to that of the Nagold (a tributary of the Neckar) on the north-east.
We know the line of this frontier which ran from the Main across the upland Odenwald to the upper waters of the Neckar and was defended by a chain of forts.
Valentinian attacked them at Solicinium (Sulz in the Neckar valley or Schwetzingen) with a large army, and defeated them with great slaughter, but his own losses were so considerable that he abandoned the idea of following up his success.
It is navigable all this distance as are also the Neckar from Esslingen, the Main from Bamberg, the Lahn, the Lippe, the Ruhr, the Mosel from Metz, with its affluents the Saar and Satier.
The name of Mannheim was connected with its present site in the 8th century, when a small village belonging to the abbey of Lorsch lay in the marshy district between the Neckar and the Rhine.