Hörder mining and smelting association

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Blast furnace with gasometer Phoenix-West

The Hörder Bergwerks- und Hütten-Verein , or Hörder Verein for short , is a former mining company in Dortmund .


The resulting 1852 Hoerder mining and metallurgical association includes the first in 1839 from Iserlohn manufacturer Hermann Diedrich Piepenstock founded Hermannshütte in the east of the Dortmund district Hörde (operating part of Phoenix-East ).

Pig iron base

The blast furnaces in Hörde 1860
Railway track puddle steel HB & HV 1861 in the Bavarian Railway Museum in Nördlingen
The blast furnace ensemble in the west area of ​​the plant during the extra shift

West of the city of Hörde, after the foundation of the Hörder Verein in 1852, the construction of the first blast furnace plant began (the operating part later called Phoenix-West ). The Hörder Verein is thus one of the first metallurgical companies in the Ruhr area , in which, in addition to steel production and further processing, the upstream production stages of pig iron production were also implemented. The first blast furnace was blown in 1854. Three more soon followed, so that in 1855/1856 around 1200 workers in the blast furnace plant could produce 22,750 tons of pig iron annually - a total of around 2100 workers worked at the Hörder Verein. By 1870 the amount of pig iron was increased to 58,000 tons per year. The ore was partly mined in its own iron stone mine.

Thomas steel mill

Thomas pear from the Phoenix-Ost steelworks, here still at the old location west of Hörder Castle

In 1879, Gustave Léon Pastors , Technical Director of the Rheinische Stahlwerke (RSW) , and Josef Massenez , Director of the Hörder Mining and Hüttenverein, succeeded both for the RSW and for the Hörder Verein, which had been using the Bessemer method since 1864 worked to be the first in German customs territory to acquire a license from Sidney Gilchrist Thomas for the new Thomas process . The Thomas steelworks, built in 1880 with four 8t converters, was able to blow 30,000 tons / month (in 1902) by using an elongated casting pit (instead of the usual round arrangement). The elongated arrangement previously introduced in the Bessemer plant of the Bochumer Verein decoupled the blow molding and casting process in terms of time so that the Thomaskonverter could be kept in operation almost continuously. With the round casting pit arrangement customary at the time, the limited casting speed with the central casting crane limited the converter output.

The production of Thomas steel itself, but also the distribution of sub-licenses, led to a rapid increase in the company over the next 15 years during the period of patent protection.

Further expansion

Future location Phoenix-West

In 1882, a Martin steel mill with three 10-tonne furnaces was built, a new rolling mill for rails, sleepers and semi-finished products as well as a drum rolling mill were built and the blast furnace plant was expanded so that the pig iron output could be increased to 106,500 tons in 1885/1886. The first pig iron mixer in Europe, which was built in Hörde in 1890, made it possible to process the pig iron from the blast furnace plant directly in the converters without remelting, which was previously hardly possible due to the spatial separation of the blast furnace plant (west) and steel plant (east). In 1896/1897, together with Hoesch, the Minette mine “Reichsland” was acquired in order to expand its own ore base.

At the turn of the century, the blast furnace plant was modernized again so that an annual output of 330,000 tons of pig iron was achieved - meanwhile with 5000 workers and 1800 miners on the company's own mines in Schleswig and Holstein .

In 1906 the annual production was already 500,000 tons with 6200 employees. The Hörder Verein merged with Phoenix AG for mining and smelting , which was founded in the 1850s and was one of the largest German mining companies at the time.

The development of the blast furnace factory was characterized by pioneering technological developments: In addition to the pig iron mixer introduced in 1890, the world's first large gas machine was used in 1898 for the direct energetic utilization of the top gas produced during the blast furnace process.

In the years and decades that followed, the division of labor between the neighboring industrial sites was further expanded. While Phoenix-West served as the home of blast furnace systems as well as coking plants and ancillary extraction plants, the further processing of pig iron into marketable products took place in Phoenix-East in steel and rolling mills. The two industrial sites were connected to one another by the Eliasbahn , a railway line through the middle of the Hörde district. The liquid pig iron was transported between the two locations in torpedo cars.

Up to seven blast furnaces were in parallel production until the Second World War .

In 1926 the Hörder Bergwerks- und Hüttenverein, which had operated the two locations Phoenix West and East until then, merged with other coal and steel companies in the Vereinigte Stahlwerke AG , which existed until the end of the Second World War.

During National Socialism, a subcamp of the Buchenwald concentration camp existed from September 1944 to March 1945 on the premises of the Dortmund-Hörder Hüttenverein AG . Between 400 and 650 girls and young women, mainly Russian and Polish women, were interned in the building at Huckarder Strasse 111 and were used for forced labor in the Huckarder Strasse / Rheinische Strasse storey factory.

After the Second World War, the Hörder Verein was merged into Dortmund-Hörder Hüttenunion AG in 1951 as part of the reorganization of the German iron and steel industry , which was taken over by Hoesch AG in 1966 . This was followed by a hostile takeover by Krupp AG in 1992, which initiated the decline of the steel era in Dortmund. The merger of Krupp and Thyssen AG in 1999 sealed the end with the decision for the location near the Rhine in Duisburg and against the one in Dortmund.

The number of blast furnaces in operation was five after the Second World War. In the context of the general decline of the steel industry at the locations further away from the Rhine in the Ruhr area, blast furnace operations were reduced to three in the 1980s and to just one in the 1990s - before the Phoenix West location was finally abandoned (1998).

Before the shutdown, Phoenix-West was considered to be the fastest ironworks in Europe, counted from tap to tap.

Hörder torch

The "Hörder torch" was blown up on January 24, 2004
View of Phoenix-Ost from the Florian Tower
Left the steelworks in July 2000, right the cleared area in August 2010

The central chimney built in the 1970s of the oxygen steelworks in Phoenix East, which was put into operation in 1963 and replaced the old Thomas steelworks , was colloquially known as the Hörder torch .

The capacities of the oxygen steelworks have been increased significantly over the years with larger converters . In order to distribute the exhaust air from the dust extraction systems as far as possible across the country, a 98-meter-high chimney, unique of its kind, was built in the form of a pipe made of reinforced concrete , in which three steel pipes (one from each converter) ran out at the top the reinforced concrete pipe emerged. The height of the chimney was necessary because of the location of the steelworks in the Emschertal ; at the same time, it was chosen so that there was no need for complex lighting . In addition to distributing the exhaust air, the Hörder torch was used for the controlled burning of the converter gas produced during steel production , as far as this could not be used. The resulting flame at the top of the chimney, often several meters high, gave the building its name.

The Hörder torch was a widely visible symbol for the steel industry in Hörde by day and night and was an important landmark in the south of Dortmund. After the closure of Phoenix-Ost, the Hörde district marketing tried to prevent the torch from being demolished and sought to preserve it as a symbol and reminder of Hörde's industrial past on the shores of the future Phoenix Lake . However, the city of Dortmund under Mayor Gerhard Langemeyer was strictly against preservation. Due to its visual appearance and presence, the building might have hindered the marketing of the building plots on Lake Phoenix, as the target group might find the sight of a relic of heavy industry in the immediate vicinity repulsive. The Hörder torch was blown up on January 24, 2004.

Shutdown, sale of facilities to China and demolition

Phoenix West
View over Phoenix East in October 2008

After the Phoenix-Ost location was shut down on April 23, 2001, ThyssenKrupp Angang Steel's Chinese cooperation partners were awarded the contract to get any equipment they wanted from the site. However, the Chinese had the condition of all machines assessed by a Chinese mechanical engineering professor based on the expected usable remaining time in order to determine whether it would be worthwhile to dismantle or transport each individual facility. Equipment that could not be used reliably in China for at least another year was not even removed from the Phoenix-East plant. As a result of these evaluations, the Chinese left far more machines and equipment than TK had previously estimated. Since the buyers were not obliged to remove the facilities, these decisions resulted in further dismantling and disposal costs on the part of ThyssenKrupp in the millions before the demolition of the building could finally begin.

Since 2010, the Phoenix-See has been located on the Phoenix-Ost site with newly emerging perimeter buildings. Individual steelworks buildings in the western edge area have been preserved. So the Hörder Burg , a warehouse building and the Tull Villa.

On December 24, 2010, the listed, former gas blower hall on the Phoenix-West site collapsed due to heavy snow loads . Over a length of a good 100 meters, the roof of the steel framework construction broke and tore parts of the facade with it into the depths. People were not harmed in the accident.

Skywalk Phoenix-West

The Phoenix-West facility with blast furnace 5 was made accessible to visitors with the "Hörder Skywalk" in 2011 as part of guided tours. The final use of the remaining outer framework of blast furnace 6 has not yet been decided.

The blast furnace plant Phoenix-West is registered as a monument in the list of monuments of the city of Dortmund .

The rock music festival Rock in the Ruins , which took place there annually from 2011 to 2013, should be mentioned as a subsequent use of the area with the greatest external media impact . In 2014 the festival was closed due to high costs and a lack of sponsors. (The previous venue was the Hohensyburg .)


  • "Rundschau" on the occasion of the 50th year of the existence of the Hörder Mining and Hüttenverein. In: Journal of the Association of German Engineers , Volume 46, 1902, No. 38 (from September 20, 1902), p. 1443 f.
  • Wilfried Feldenkirchen : The iron and steel industry of the Ruhr area 1879-1914. Franz Steiner Verlag, Wiesbaden 1982. (especially time table p. 336 ff. And workforce figures in table 104a)
  • The Hoerder Mining and Hüttenverein. In: Oskar Stillich : Iron and Steel Industry. (= Economic research in the field of large-scale industrial enterprise , Volume 1.) Franz Siemenroth Verlag, Berlin 1904, pp. 1-52.
  • Karl-Peter Ellerbrock: The history of the «PHOENIX» in Hörde . Aschendorff Verlag, Münster 2006, ISBN 3-402-00406-2 , p. 109 .

Web links

Commons : Hoesch Phoenix  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Dortmund (Hüttenverein AG). In: Wolfgang Benz , Barbara Distel (eds.): The place of terror . History of the National Socialist Concentration Camps. Volume 3: Sachsenhausen, Buchenwald. CH Beck, Munich 2006, ISBN 3-406-52963-1 , p. 416 ff.
  2. http://www.ruhrnachrichten.de/lokales/dortmund/lokalnachrichten_dortmund/Experten-raetseln-ueber-Halleneinsturz;art930,1138466
  3. No. A 0938. List of monuments of the city of Dortmund. (PDF) (No longer available online.) In: dortmund.de - Das Dortmunder Stadtportal. Monument Authority of the City of Dortmund, April 14, 2014, archived from the original on September 15, 2014 ; accessed on June 12, 2014 (size: 180 kB). Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.dortmund.de

Coordinates: 51 ° 29 ′ 25 ″  N , 7 ° 30 ′ 24 ″  E