Silver mining in the area around Brand-Erbisdorf dates back to at least the 13th century. It emerged as the most important mining area in the Freiberg mining district. During some periods, more than 20% of the total Saxon silver was extracted here. Its importance is demonstrated by the well-preserved mining surface buildings and the Thelersberger adit as examples of mining infrastructure.
After the closure of the mines, the Elite automobile plant was founded at this location in 1913 as a statesupported post-mining industry.
Important Locations and Sites
Alte Mordgrube Mine with Junge Mordgrube Stehender
The mine in Alte Mordgrube first appeared in written documents in 1516. The mine was revived with the modernisation of the pit in the 19th century. In 1896 the mine was closed. The surviving surface buildings include the chapel (1853), the Huthaus (administration and assembly building, around 1820) and the mine forge and engine house. The shaft building became an inn in 1906 named “Zur Zugspitze”. Alte Mordgrube forms part of a mining heritage trail.
Various machine rooms have also been preserved below the surface in addition to the mining excavations. The most important technical monument is the 17-metre-high water-column engine from the first third of the 19th century. It is not currently open to the public.
South of the Menden shaft, there is the prominent line of heaps Junge Mordgrube Stehender.
Goldbachtal Mining Landscape
The Hörnig shaft, found in writings dating to 1518, was joined with other pits to form the Einigkeit mine (Svornost) in 1850. The Huthaus (administration and assembly building) built in 1837 currently houses the Huthaus Einigkeit town museum and forms part of a mining heritage trail.The Thelersberg main adit dating from 1528 became one of the most important drainage tunnels in the southern ore fields of Freiberg. The length of the adit, including side tunnels, is estimated to be over 50 km. The opening of the Thelersberg adit can be accessed via footpaths and cycle paths.
Together with the planned closure of the Freiberg mines at the beginning of the 20th century, funding from the State of Saxony led to new industrial companies settling in the area. The Elite Automobile Plant founded in Brand-Erbisdorf in 1913 is a typical example of a post-mining industry. Vehicles, bicycles, vehicle parts and vehicle manufacturing machinery were produced here. At times there were over 600 employees. After 1990, many small- and medium-sized businesses gathered together to form Elite-Gewerbepark GmbH in this testimony to industrial architecture.