Bitterfeld

Bitterfeld (German pronunciation: [ˈbɪtɐfɛlt]) is a town in the district Anhalt-Bitterfeld, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Since 1 July 2007 it has been part of the town Bitterfeld-Wolfen. It is situated approximately 25 km south of Dessau, and 30 km northeast of Halle (Saale). At the end of 2016, it had 40,964 inhabitants.[1]

History and description

Bitterfeld was built by a colony of Flemish immigrants in 1153. It was captured by the landgrave of Meissen in 1476, and belonged thenceforth to Saxony, until it was ceded to Prussia in 1815.[2]

By 1900, Bitterfeld station was an important junction of the Berlin–Halle and the Magdeburg–Leipzig railways. The population at that time was 11,839; it manufactured drain-pipes, paper-roofing, and machinery, and had saw mills. There were also several coal mines in the vicinity. Owing to its pleasant situation and accessibility, it had become a favoured residence of business men of Leipzig and Halle.[2]

During the East Germany (GDR) years, it gained notoriety for its chemical industry complex which caused remarkably severe pollution, even by GDR standards. On 24 April 1959 it also was a scene for the Bitterfeld Conference, locally known as the "Bitterfelder Weg". This conference sought to connect the working class with the artists of the day to form a socialist national culture.[3]

In the 21st century Bitterfeld is still an industrial town and it stages the annual United Metal Maniacs metal festival.[4]

The former brown-coal open cast mine of Goitzsche, south-east of Bitterfeld, is a source of numerous fossils in Bitterfeld amber.

Historical population

1840 to 1939
YearPopulation
184004,649
187005,693
188006,531
189009,047
192518,384
193321,328
193923,949
1946 to 1995
YearPopulation
194632,833[EW 1]
195032,814[EW 2]
196031,687
198122,199
198421,279
199018,099[EW 3]
199516,868
2000 to 2006[5]
YearPopulation
200016,507
200116,237
200215,985
200315.798
200415,755
200515,728
200615,709[EW 4]

(from 1840 to 2006):[5]

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Johann Ernst Altenburg (1736-1801), trumpeter and organist
  • Erwin Ding-Schuler (1912-1945), sturmbannführer and first camp doctor of Buchenwald
  • Peter Rasym (born 1953), musician, has been playing bass guitar since 1997 with the Puhdys

Other personalities

  • August von Parseval (1861-1942), his impact airships developed by him were partly built in Bitterfeld.
  • Walther Rathenau (1867-1922), founder of Bitterfeld's chemical industry.
  • Klaus Staeck (born 1938), graphic artist, lawyer and president of the academy of the arts, grew up in Bitterfeld.

Mayors

  • 1851-1863 Gottlieb Meuche
  • 1863-1873 Gustav Frischbier
  • 1873-1890 Robert Sommer († 1890)
  • 1890-1914 Hugo Hermann Adalbert Dippe (1853; † 1916)
  • 1915-1927 Ernst Albert Hermann Schmidt
  • 1927-1939 Arthur Erdmann Ebermann
  • 1939-1945 Erhard Johann Martin Nimz
  • 1943-1945 Walter Stieb (Interim)
  • 26   April 1945 to 30   August 1945 Gustav Dietrich (deselection by Soviet city commandant) († 1972)
  • September 1945 to 1946 Bernhard Moder
  • 1946-1949 Ernst Rettel
  • 1949-1950 Karl Salbach
  • 1950-1953 Heinz-Rudolf Strauch
  • 1953-1959 Wolfgang Stille
  • 1959-1971 Else Petrushka
  • 1971-1979 Max Dittbrenner
  • 1979-1982 Karlheinz Sohr
  • 1982-1990 Klaus Barth
  • 1990-1994 Edelgard Kauf
  • 1994-2007 Werner Rauball
  • 2007-2009 Horst Tischer
  • From 2010 Joachim Gülland

Literature

  • Maron, Monika: Bitterfelder Bogen. Ein Bericht. Fischer Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 2009, ISBN 978-3-10-048828-2.
  • Lojewsky, Hannelore: Seh’n wir uns nicht in dieser Welt, so seh’n wir uns in Bitterfeld. In: Norbert Kühne: Individuelles Lernen wird an Bedeutung gewinnen. 100 Jahre Hans-Böckler-Berufskolleg Marl/Haltern, Marl 2009, S. 29–30.
  • Klaus Seehafer: Dann sehn wir uns in Bitterfeld. Tagebuch eines Jahres. Mitteldeutscher Verlag, Halle/S. 2009, ISBN 3-89812-664-1.
  • Bitterfeld und das untere Muldetal. Edition no. 1 Böhlau, Cologne; Weimar; Vienna 2004, ISBN 3-412-03803-2 (Werte der deutschen Heimat. Vol. 66).
  • Hackenholz, Dirk: Die elektrochemischen Werke in Bitterfeld 1914–1945. Ein Standort der IG-Farbenindustrie AG. LIT-Verlag, Münster 2004, ISBN 3-8258-7656-X.

Notes

  1. 29 October
  2. 31 August
  3. 3 October
  4. 30 June

References

  1. Statistical information
  2.  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Bitterfeld". Encyclopædia Britannica. 4 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 13.
  3. "Bitterfelder Konferenzen", Kulturpolitisches Wörterbuch (2nd print ed.), Berlin: Dietz Verlag, 1978
  4. Festung Bitterfeld - 15 Jahre (1997-2012) (in German), retrieved 2013-01-18
  5. Data source since 1995: Statistisches Landesamt Sachsen-Anhalt

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