The Old Market in Unna.
|• Mayor||Werner Kolter (SPD)|
|• Total||88.52 km2 (34.18 sq mi)|
|Elevation||142 m (466 ft)|
|• Density||670/km2 (1,700/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
|Postal codes||59423, 59425, 59427|
|Dialling codes||02303, 02308|
Unna is situated on an ancient salt-trading route, the Hellweg road. Trade on this route and during the period of the Hansa Trade Route came from as far as London. It is located at the eastern extremity of the Ruhr area, about 15 kilometres (9 miles) east of the centre of Dortmund.
Division of the town
Unna consists of the following districts:
Massen and Königsborn are industrial and mining areas; the other districts have a more rural character.
The history of Unna is a long series of wars, plagues, and fires.
There were neolithic settlements here but Unna gained significance as a way station on the Hellweg. Its name is first recorded in an ecclesiastical document of 1032. Around 1200, Count Friedrich von Altena-Isenberg was invested with the fiefdom of Unna, among other estates, by the Archbishop of Cologne. Over the next few hundred years the town was repeatedly fought over, and burned down several times. In the 14th century the town became wealthy: a mint was established and in 1952 a selection of coins numbering around 70 were discovered during excavation works. The coins originated from various countries and are thought to have been buried around 1375. From the mid 15th century the town was a notable trade centre and Hanse town. In 1597 more than half the population died of the plague. In the early 17th century the town changed hands several times in religious wars, and in 1666 fell under the control of Prussia. In the early 19th century the primary character of the town started to change from agricultural to industrial, with improved communications by road, rail and waterways. Coal mining started in 1870, together with industries dependent on it. The population rose from around 2,500 at the start of the 19th century to 15,000 in 1900. In 1943-45 there were major air attacks directed at the significant barracks and other military installations in the town.
In the older part of town are many half-timbered buildings built between the 16th and 19th centuries. Unna was an agriculturally based town until the 19th century, when it became industrially based. After World War II the artisan district which had survived bombing was largely torn down to make way for modern development; however many of the buildings have been restored.
The Lindenbrauerei once produced Lindenbier, and restarted small-scale production a few years ago. The brewery is also home to the town library and night school (Volkshochschule). It is characterised by its large chimney stack which boasts a light installation, not surprising considering the brewery houses the centre for International Light/Illumination Art (Zentrum für Internationale Lichtkunst).
In February, 1946 a coal mine near the city suffered a dust explosion that killed 418 miners. This was the worst mining accident in German history.
In common with other German towns, Unna produces its own traditional herbal liquor, 'Herting Pörter', named after the town's Herting gate or 'port'. Parts of the town wall remain intact and in good condition, and include towers near the artisan quarter. The liquor is produced near where the gate used to be, and is sold locally.
In the market place is a fountain with a man pulling a stubborn donkey, which is the town mascot, perhaps because the locals consider themselves stubborn. The market place hosts the Stadtfest every September and the Italian light festival mentioned above. There is also a grocers' market. The square hosts the Christmas market which goes from the square down the Bahnhofstraße to the Rathaus (Town Hall).
The newly refurbished Unna station has trains to all major cities in North Rhine Westphalia including Dortmund, Cologne, Münster, Hamm, Düsseldorf and Wuppertal. There is also the Regional-Express 7 (Rhein-Münsterland-Express) runs from Rheine via Cologne to Krefeld.
More pictures of Unna are in the German Wikipedia page about Unna.
Twin towns — Sister cities
- "Amtliche Bevölkerungszahlen". Landesbetrieb Information und Technik NRW (in German). 31 July 2013.
- Exorcising Hitler; The Occupation and Denazification of Germany, Frederick Taylor, Bloomsbury Press
- "List of Twin Towns in the Ruhr District". © 2009 Twins2010.com. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- "Pisa - Official Sister Cities". © Comune di Pisa, Via degli Uffizi, 1 - 56100 Pisa centralino: +39 050 910111. Retrieved 2008-12-16.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Unna.|
|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Unna.|
- Official website (German)