Around 1850, this brand new textile factory was built next to the river in this quaint little village in the German rural hinterland. After a few years, it changed hands and was transformed into a paper factory. As the years passed by, the factory became the focal point of the village and an industrial catalyst for the region’s econmy. Complete production lines were built and the company gradually specialized in innovative types of paper – from crepe and textile woven paper to aluminium foil. Today, the two full-blown steam engines of this once pounding heart of Germany’s paper industry whistle no more – the factory is torn down.
Abandoned paper factory. The history of the building dates back to the 17th century, when a mill was built on these grounds. Later on, this mill was converted into a paper factory, which was many years later, after the paper producing activities had stopped, again converted. This time into a secondhand car dealer shop. In its last years (before total abandonment) a fire destroyed large parts of the upper floor.
ECI has an impressive history. As early as in 1798 watermills were built on this site, that was later on equipped with a large paper mill (in 1807), constructed by Burghoff, Magnée & Co. After the paper mill was sold to a potato factory about a century later (in 1908), the first (hydro-electric) power station was erected on the site. Only a few decades later, in 1926, the buildings changed hands again and ECI (Electro Chemical Industry) was born. Although the buildings were bombed during WW2, the site was soon rebuilt once the war ended only to be left abandoned by 1974. Nevertheless, as the new millennium started, many of the buildings were reconverted into offices and also a new –slightly smaller- hydro-electric plant was built.