The discovery of silver ore in 1168 led to the founding of Freiberg, the oldest mining town in the Erzgebirge. The town developed into a mining centre of supra-regional economic, cultural and scientific importance. Important buildings, such as the mining authority offices, the mining university, Freiberg Cathedral and numerous town houses bear witness to the influence of mining. A further significant building is the former Kahla porcelain factory, built in 1913 as a post-mining industry.