The House of Blackheads (Melngalvju nams) is the most significant focus of the ensemble of the Town Hall Square. In the 15th century it was leased out to the fraternity of Blackheads, whos Patron was the dark-skinned St. Maurice. In documents the House of Blackheads was mentioned for the first time in 1334 (as a New House of Big Guild), obviously it served as a common place of meetings and festivals.
Originated from a small fishermen village, for centuries Riga has been an important part of the trade chain between Russia and Western Europe. A lively crossroad of cultures and backgrounds for over 800 years, the historical centre of Riga has accumulated an impressive cultural baggage and today is justly included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage list.