Historical Overview

For long-time residents of Stützengrün, there's still a divide between the upper and lower parts of the town - Ober- and Unterstützengrün. The two were independent until around 50 years ago when they were merged into a single community. The town's development is closely linked to its origins and geographical location.

Stützengrün sits on a hilly plateau of Eibenstock tourmaline granite, between 570 and 680 m above sea level, and on the border between the Ore Mountains and the Vogtland. The first settlement here was a two-row village in a forest clearing, known as a Waldhufendorf. The first houses were built at the foot of the Kuhberg mountain at 680 m. There were 4 farms, including a brewery. This settlement was named "neues Lehn" ("new fiefdom") by the Auerbach rulers. The area is still known as Neulehn today. At that time, the "fiefdom" belonged to Balthasar von der Planitz, who wrote a letter of liberation to his citizens in 1546. This is the first documented reference to Stützengrün. And the reason why the town celebrated its 450th anniversary in 1996.

It is not known in which year Unterstützengrün in the Weißbachtal valley (570 m above sea level) was founded. An armoury and mill that belonged to the Schwarzenberg tax authorities of (reference dated to 1575) are the earliest known buildings. Neulehn quickly began to expand towards the north east. The "Vorderdorf" ("upper village"), modern day Oberstützengrün, was founded near what is now the B169, which runs from Aue to Rodewisch. Both villages (Oberstützengrün with Neulehn and Unterstützengrün) were independent until the last century, with only the "stützengrün" name to bind them. Each had its own mayor. And there were 3 schools. In 1563, Augustus, Elector of Saxony purchased the towns from the Planitz family, meaning that Stützengrün became an electoral village and part of Schwarzenberg. In 1690, the Elector granted permission to build a church, which was consecrated in 1701. Local residents held a series of events from 13-21 October 2001 to mark its 300th anniversary. Inside, you can still see a Jehmlich organ dating to 1859, which was restored in 1991, and a beautiful baroque style carved alter. The graveyard came into use at the same time as the church was consecrated.

The forge (1575) and the St. Johannes iron mine, which opened in 1632, had a great impact on the character of the town. With the collapse of the mining industry, the soot trade, the berry trade, and in particular the brush industry, took over as the main sources of income. And it was not just craftsmen and tradespeople, industry started to develop here too. In 1925, the first large industrial company, a brush factory, was founded. Others followed. To transport raw materials and make goods shipments faster, a narrow-gauge railway was needed, and it arrived in 1893 with the opening of the line between Saupersdorf and Wiltzschhaus that also went through Stützengrün. The railway closed in 1975. In 1991, the "Museumsbahn Schönheide/Carlsfeld e.V." heritage railway foundation was formed. Since December 1997, the foundation has run a regular service between Schönheide and Stützengrün.

In 1993, a 7 ha industrial estate opened on the B169. The first business to open its doors there was a grocery store, but the site is now exclusively occupied by manufacturing sites. Numerous hiking trails pass through Stützengrün. The town boasts some 30 km of marked paths leading to stunning destinations, including the 795 m high Kuhberg mountain, the Eibenstock reservoir and neighbouring areas. The most famous of these trails is the "Eisenach-Budapest International Friendship Trail". Stützengrün also has its own open-air swimming pool and a ski lift. And there are plenty of cosy restaurants and pubs to enjoy, as well as a variety of options if you choose to stay the night. Stützengrün is a place where many residents are active in local associations, and where traditional handicrafts such as bobbin lace-making, whittling and turning are still practised to this day. As a result of boundary changes, Lichtenau became part of Stützengrün in 1996, with Hundshübel following in 1999. As of 1 December 2013, the municipality is home to 3998 people.