History of the ZOO
"If we want to live, we have to make arrangements for the nature to be protected"
In 1908, Heinrich Lumpe, a major Ústí businessman and dealer in metal goods, aged 49, had had fulfilled the dream of his life. He was a keen lover of nature and bird-watcher, and an ornithologist respected in Ústí nad Labem and elsewhere. In his homeland, as well as beyond the Bohemian borders - in, e.g., several regions of Italy.
In place of a former brick-kiln situated on the slopes of the Virgin Mary rock, Lumpe purchased 6 hectares of land lots. On those, he set up a private nature reserve or rather a bird sanctuary that became known as Lumpepark. A great lot of huge stones were used for the construction. From Thuringia, 20 wagons of tuff were imported and used to create dozens of hundred of bird-hiding places, and a man-made recess filled with water. Tuff was moreover used for setting up the fairy-like grotto and the Little Dwarf Castle that actually constitutes the only relic that has survived since. Within further years, Heinrich Lumpe enriched the reserve’s premises by setting up a row-game preserve. Hundreds of ornamental shrubs were planted, as were coniferous and leaf trees. Erected was a sophisticated system of cascades and waterfalls, and the little valley in the lower became embellished with a quaint lake boasting with a fountain. In 1914, Heinrich Lumpe decided that the park be open to even the general public - to serve to all visitors, and to youth in particular, through enhancing their fondness for nature.
In the aftermath of World War I, Heinrich Lumpe would continue reconditioning the Park in an effort to follow the trends of both the then landscape architecture, and period vogue. From the Trutnov vicinity, Lumpe had fossilised prehistoric Araucaria trunks brought in, and fairy-tale sceneries such as the Gingerbread House, the Little Red riding Hood, and the Sprite of the Giant Mountains, and others, were deployed in a specially chosen setting within the Park.
Though Heinrich Lumpe died in 1936, the Park continued to live, maintaining its standard – largely thanks to the commitment of the senior gardener and other staff. In the aftermath of World War II, the Czechoslovak Republic becomes the owner of the Park. The bird sanctuary is turned into a ZOO-spot. New cages are installed, and further paddocks built. Over the time, the area of the ZOO would increase. Greatest growth was notched in 1970s when the ZOO had reached today’s land surface equalling 26 hectares. New pavilions began to be erected, providing access to visitors separated from animals by more "state-of-the-art" glass sheets replacing classic bars. In the upper part of the ZOO, spacious paddocks were built to host rhinoceroses. That, however, already constitutes a different chapter in the life of the Ústí Zoological garden