The Renaissance manor house of the Forgáč family – Hertník
The history of this building dates back to the middle of the 16th century, when the Hertník estate became the property of the aristocratic Forgáč family from Jelenec / Gýmeš /. One of its members, Baron Šimon Forgáč / 1526-1598 /, was awarded the area of Hertník by the Emperor Ferdinand I in 1553 for his military skills in the fight against the Turks and the princes of Transylvania. As an important military dignitary, he also needed a reasonably representative seat to rule his new dominion from. However, he did not build the Renaissance manor house on a green meadow, as was the custom back then. Instead, he built his seat on the site of an older castle (dating back to the middle of the 15th century) which served as a military-defensive point overlooking the road connecting Bardejov and Prešov. The manor house was allegedly built by Ján Jiskra from Brandýs. The Forgáč family manor house was built as a four-tower two-storey block building with a rectangular floor plan. The large courtyard was bordered by a wall with an entrance gate reinforced in several places by bastions and protected from the outside by a wide moat. The estate also featured a large garden (sometimes called Master’s Garden) with fruit and ornamental trees and a pond. Between the garden and the yard, farm buildings and a smaller and much simpler manor, where the servants used to live, were built. According to the records, the estate used to feature a chapel which the then Countess Forgáč equipped with an altar. The local legend speaks of a secret corridor that allegedly leads from the manor house to the church crypt or the forest. In addition to Herník, this manor house also ruled over more distant villages of Osikov, Šiba, Hervartov, Krivá, Kríže, Bogliarka, Žatkovce, Livov, Venecia and Lukov for about 350 years. The manor house was heavily damaged in World War II, and had to be partially restored in 1952. The last repair took place at the turn of the seventies and eighties of the 20th century, giving it its present looks. There is also a beautiful park in the neighbourhood. Since 1993, the manor house has been home to the KOR-GYM Integration center.