Guide to the Unterwellenborn ironworks

A. Dürkop: Führer durch das Eisenwerk Unterwellenborn bei Saalfeld a. d. Saale. (Saalfeld : Verlag der W. Wiedemannschen Buchhandlung, 1892).

acquired in 2017

He explains his rationale in the Preface: "On his frequent visits to the Unterwellenborn iron works – undertaken either to instruct himself about the manufacture of iron and steel or to act as a guide for other visitors – the author invariably enjoyed the kindest treatment from the factory's officials, and their courteous willingness to answer the layman's questions and explain the processes in the blast furnaces and the machines was tireless. But not everyone is privileged to visit the foundry a few times every year and have friendly guides to explain and expound. In such circumstances a printed guidebook is most welcome. The reader may peruse it before visiting the site or use it as a guide during the visit. And it can be consulted afterwards in order to refresh one's memory and recall what one has seen on the tour."


The small volume has nine chapters dedicated to mining, the extraction and preparation of ores, blast furnaces, tapping, iron casting, the Bessemer converter process, steel casting, the rolling mill, and the production of bricks and cement from the slag. Every year some ten million bricks were manufactured from the furnaces' slag. The slag heap still dominates the landscape even today. Iron production in Unterwellenborn was shut down in 1992, but an electric steelworks with a rolling mill has been operating at the site under the name Stahlwerk Thüringen (Thuringia Steel Mill) since 1995 and it has been part of Companhia Siderúrgica Nacional, a Brazilian company, since 2012.

The book in IRONCAT

"Eisenwerk Unterwellenborn" in IRONCAT