The first house was build in the thirteenth century as a hunting lodge
used by the counts and dukes of Gelre. The house was named
'Pauwenburcht' (Peacock Castle) because of the white peacocks they
kept there. The dukes of Gelre used to wear the feathers on their
The present house was build in 1905 on the foundations of a house dating from the seventeenth century.
Staverden Castle is build on the foundations of a seventeenth century house.
At the backside of the house lies a small island in a pond. On the the
island you can find the tomb of Eleonora. This Eleonora lived at
Wildenborgh Castle, one of the eight castles of Vorden. She had a
lover, who went on a crusade in the Holy Land. When he was away,
another man wanted to gain her by force. When her lover returned home,
he was killed by his rival. Eleonora wanted to escape this evil man
and fled to Staverden, where a mighty knight lived, who gave her
protection. She stayed there for the rest of her unhappy life, always
dressed in black.
After her death she was buried on the island in the pond. On moonlit nights, the black lady is seen there, walking to and fro on the island, wringing her hands and lamenting about her lost love.