Stephan Roth (1492 - 1546) became part of Martin Luther's circle at Wittenberg in 1523. He wrote down all the sermons delivered by the great reformer. Soon after moving to Zwickau, he was appointed town clerk and headmaster of the Latin school. In 1534, he had a house built for himself on the main market square.
Today, it is the building with the narrowest front in Zwickau and has earned itself the nickname of the 'Handkerchief' (Handtuch). During the course of major extension work in 1892, it acquired its neo-Gothic façade with two gables. Roth acted as an intermediary for Zwickau Council and the first Protestant pastor of Zwickau, Nikolaus Hausmann, in their contacts with Martin Luther. Via Roth's good offices, Luther was able to exert influence on the progress and the consolidation of the Reformation in the city. A dispute over the appointment of pastors in 1531 led to a falling out between Luther and Roth who took the side of the city council.