Schkopau

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Schkopau
Schkopau   is located in Germany
Schkopau
Schkopau
Coordinates: 51°23′N 11°58′E / 51.383°N 11.967°E / 51.383; 11.967Coordinates: 51°23′N 11°58′E / 51.383°N 11.967°E / 51.383; 11.967
Country Germany
State Saxony-Anhalt
District Saalekreis
Government
 • Mayor Andrej Haufe (CDU)
Area
 • Total 90.66 km2 (35.00 sq mi)
Elevation 98 m (322 ft)
Population (2012-12-31)[1]
 • Total 11,025
 • Density 120/km2 (310/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes 06258
Dialling codes 03461
Vehicle registration SK
Website www.gemeinde-schkopau.de

Schkopau is a municipality in the Saalekreis district, in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany.

Geography[edit]

It is situated at the confluence of the Saale River with its Weisse Elster and Luppe tributaries, approx. 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) north of Merseburg, and 10 km (6.2 mi) south of Halle.

Streetcar in Schkopau

Schkopau station is a stop on the Thuringian Railway line from Halle to Eisenach. Another connection is provided by an interurban tramway line from Halle to Bad Dürrenberg. Beside the resident chemical industry, the municipality is the site of the Schkopau Power Station, a brown coal power plant run by the E.ON electric utility.

The municipal area comprises the localities of Burgliebenau, Döllnitz, Ermlitz, Hohenweiden, Knapendorf, Korbetha, Lochau, Luppenau, Raßnitz, Röglitz, Schkopau, and Wallendorf.

History[edit]

A Scapowe Castle was first mentioned in an 1177 deed. Already in the ninth century, a Carolingian fortress had been erected on the Saale River, then the eastern border of East Francia with the lands of the Polabian Slavs.

Schkopau Castle

In 1215, King Frederick II endowed it to the Archbishop of Magdeburg, who already held the nearby town of Halle. Enfeoffed to the Bishop of Merseburg in 1444 and held by the Trotha noble family from 1477 onwards, the castle was rebuilt several times, recently in 1876 in a Renaissance Revival style. Today it is used as a hotel.

In April 1936, the Buna (i.e. butadiene-natrium polymer) synthetic rubber company was established in Schkopau, part of the Nazi efforts to make German economy self-sufficient in view of coming World War II. The Schkopau works were a subsidiary of the Leuna chemical company, itself part of the vast IG Farben industry conglomerate. Production started in 1937; beside rubber it included polyvinyl chloride (PVC), trichloroethylene, formaldehyde, tetrahydrofuran (THF), acetic acid and acetic anhydride, as well as acetone.

During the war, the Schkopau plant was the greatest producer of Axis synthetic rubber (>17%).[2] It ran the Buna Werke branch in Oświęcim, where the Monowitz concentration camp (Auschwitz III) was erected, a labor camp (Arbeitslager) with numerous forced labourers working under cruel treatment.

Schkopau Buna plant, 1953

After the war, the Schkopau plant was seized by the Soviet Military Administration in Germany and re-organised as a Publicly Owned Operation (Volkseigener Betrieb, VEB) of East Germany. The VEB Chemische Werke Buna combine, the world's largest producer of carbide in 1958, became known for its Plaste und Elaste products but also for outdated production facilities and heavy industrial pollution. Taken over by the East German Treuhand agency upon the Peaceful Revolution in 1989, it is today a subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Company.

Politics[edit]

Seats in the municipal assembly as of 2009 elections:

Schkopau municipal logo with stylized flask

Mayor Andrej Haufe (CDU) was directly elected in 2011 by 54.1% of the votes cast.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bevölkerung der Gemeinden 31.12.2012". Statistisches Landesamt Sachsen-Anhalt (in German). January 2014. 
  2. ^ Stormont, John W. (March 1946) [summer of 1945]. AAFRH-19: The Combined Bomber Offensive; April through December 1943. Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library: Collection of 20th Century Military Records, 1918-1950 Series I: Historical Studies Box 35: AAF Historical Office; Headquarters, Army Air Force. pp. 74–5, 81. "SECRET ... Classification Cancelled ... JUN 10 1959"