Schmalzgrube Ironworks


Historical records of ore mining in the Ore Mountains begin in 1168, when silver ores were discovered in the vicinity of today's Freiberg. More than 800 years of mining history of the Ore Mountains are based on this discovery.

The Schmalzgrube Ironworks with its blast furnace and its manor house exemplifies the early industrial production of pig iron in the Central Ore Mountains. The blast furnace, about 8 m in height, was constructed in 1659 from quarry stone. A plate attached to the furnace is inscribed with the year 1819 alongside the initials H.A.v.E.E. which stand for the former owners, heirs of Hans August von Elterleins; the year 1819 possibly refers to the date of renovation works. The iron ores processed in the furnace primarily originated from the Bohemian part of the Ore Mountains. The manor house was built in 1766 and exemplifies the social structure of the 18th century iron production n the Ore Mountains.