450 years of uninterrupted production on site = fundamental experience

In 1566, our story began with the documentary approval of carrying on a hammer mill in the valley of the Mulde river. Since then members of the site have steadily improved processing of malleable cast iron by their commitment and collaboration. Across centuries, manual and technical skills have been brought to perfection, which are nowadays basis for our accomplished abilities in the manipulation of cast iron.

The present‘s success results from the past’s achievements.

1st November 2015

ES Automobilguss GmbH becomes member of the Prevent Group.


Demolition of the 100 m high chimney.


Change of the company’s name from “Eisenwerk Schönheiderhammer GmbH” to “ES Automobilguss GmbH”.


Implementation of the first long-term cupola furnace.


New construction of high-performance moulding material preparation.


Privatisation of the corporation.


Installation of a medium frequency crucible furnace.


Beginnings of machining of malleable cast iron parts. Fabrication of neck rings and bottle caps for gas cylinders.


initiation of the pilot plant „Thermal process unit“ for fabrication of malleable cast iron in permanent moulds according to Prof. Dr.-Ing. Karl Stölzel and Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Günter Pistol


Implementation of the 30 kV distribution station.

Initiation of the duplex melting process for fabrication of malleable cast iron.


The first supply frequency crucible furnace that has been developed and produced in GDR is brought on line, with a capacity of 800/1000 kg.


New development of melting practice and implementation of three cold blast cupola furnaces.

1954 – 1956

Application of an unpacking and sorting tumbler in the new annealing facility as well as a basement conveyor for transportation of casted parts to the casting blow room and distribution.

1953 – 1954

Construction of a new annealing facility with deep-chamber kilns and attached generator for lean gas producing. The old annealing facility (with the Querfurth furnaces) is converted for lean gas heating in 1957, replacing the old lignite briquette heating.

1951 – 1952

Establishment of new moulding facilities with in-house labour forces.


For annealing the malleable cast iron, iron ore (red haematite) on the scale of 3 to 12 mm is needed. Until 1945 the ore had been obtained from the Siegerland in the west of Germany. After the small stocks that were stored in GDR had been exhausted, improvisation was in demand. A huge heap of medieval iron ore was discovered at the Rehhübel in Oberwildenthal. With the help of a primitive construction the ore was excavated, washed and crushed by a stone-breaker.


Both of the Querfurth annealing furnaces, which had been operated by horse-capstan, receive an electromotive driving.


Start of production of grey and malleable cast iron. (116 t of grey iron, 270 t of malleable iron)


The ironwork is antiquated and the equipment is worn out.

Restart of a small production with 120 members of staff in July.


Initiation of the water power plant “Möckelmühle”


Launch of the hydroelectric centre (440 V DC)

Picture: Hydroelectric centre, control unit 1926


The king of Saxony pays a visit to the iron works and the Querfurth family.


A report about the industry in Saxony publishes data according to the development of the factory in Schönheide in the past few years:
-fabrication of malleable and weldable castings (ca. 24,000 centners annual production)
-production of grey cast iron, iron ovens, grate bars and enamelled iron parts
-for special purposes, the site comprises a fitter's shop, a job shop, an electroplating plant, tinning and zinc-coating facilities
- 463 workers and employees are engaged in the site
-Europe-wide export of the “as exquisite known” products

Picture: Iron plant and station Schönheiderhammer 1895 and production program at the turn of the century

1st October 1875

Dedication of the railway line Chemnitz-Aue-Adorf. The lords of the ironworks in Schönheide had been forcing this connection to bigger economic centres for years to achieve a significant reduction of transportation costs.


Two cupola furnaces are used to produce works of secondary metals.


Production is conducted by four crucible melting furnaces and six annealing furnaces, involving two Querfurth-patented annealing furnaces.

Some thirty workers are employed in the facility, who fabricate an annual volume of approximately 2,400 centners of malleable iron and shaped steel casting.

Picture: Querfurth-patented annealing furnace according to Ledebur


Start of the fabrication of malleable cast iron – at that time tough to produce.

Picture: In 1866, the first malleable iron was cast in this building.


Establishment of an enamelling plant.

2nd August 1845

Death of Karl of Querfurth. His descendants become owners of the ironworks.

1st January 1826

Assumption of ownership by Querfurth. He dedicates himself to the ferrous metallurgy and strives to improve the efficiency of the hammer mill. The product’s quality increases significantly.


Voluntary auction. Karl Edler of Querfurth purchases the hammer mill.


The hammer mill passes to the merchants Christian Gottlieb Maukisch and Christian Gottlob Rosenbaum from Dresden.

The Maukisch business promotes the factory but becomes insolvent in 1823.

6th November 1814

Death of Karl Gottlieb Rauh. Liquidation proceedings about his inheritance.


David Rauh passes the sites in Schönheide and Oberblauenthal to his son Karl Gottlieb Rauh. Enhancements of furnace operation, extension of rod and planchet refining and ignition of hearth moulding.

With the advancements and refining of the old modes of operation and the consequential savings of raw material and labour time the hammer mill in Schönheide had become a pioneering institution which was considered as an archetype for other ironworks in Saxony.


David Rauh, owner of the foundry of Oberblauenthal (Wolfsgrün), purchases the hammer mill in Schönheide.


Failure of Mendes enterprise because of the Seven Year’s War. Judicial sale of the estates and facilities of the hammer mill.


Sale of the Schönheide hammer mill to Christian Wilhelm Mende. After his death in 1761, his son Johann Wilhelm Mende takes over the estate of the hammer mill and Uthmann’s facilities.


Christian Gottlieb Bußius purchases the local hammer mill and resides on the site.


Friedrich Siegel is lord of the hammer mills of Unterblauenthal, Schönheide and Rautenkranz. He dies on 18th September 1707.

26th March 1660

Enacting of a statute for hammer-works by Elector Johann Georg II.

27th February 1627

Jeremias Siegel petitions for variation of his “Blechhammer und Zienhaus” (construction of a tinning facility)

4th October 1625

Sovereign approval for extension of the rod mill and construction of a sheet metal hammer.

13th December 1616

Death of Abraham Siegel, his son Jeremias Siegel takes the site over.

12th January 1591

Accession of the Planitz Mill by Melchior Siegel as a fiefdom. He passes the whole site to his son Abraham Siegel.

14th November 1587

Application for the construction of a blast furnace. The elector approves on 12 March 1588. This furnace was one of the first built in Germany.

14th April 1584

Uthmann sells to Melchior Siegel, mining official in Eibenstock, who also purchases the rod mill "uff der Schönheide" in 1585.

14th December 1576

Elector August sells the whole site to Heinrich Uthmann, owner of Manor Reuth.

27th March 1569

Blöde sells the hammer mill and the associated grinder and granulator to Christoff Jahnen.

27th February 1566

Construction permission of an iron hammer mill in Schönheide by Elector August to Georg Blöde. Start of operation already in 1566. The winning of iron from ore happens under the use of a method called "Zurennwergk”.

Picture: Bloomery fire and forging hammer

created by

Gottfried Mayer
Neuheider Str. 21 B
08304 Schönheide