Otfried Wagenbreth

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Otfried Wagenbreth (born April 7, 1927 in Zeitz ; † May 25, 2017 in Bad Kreuznach ) was a German geologist and mining historian .


At the end of the Second World War, Wagenbreth still had to do military service as an 18-year-old and was taken prisoner by the Americans near Alterode on April 17, 1945 . He was then taken to the Kripp-Sinzig prison camp until June 1, 1945 .

After studying mining science at the Bergakademie Freiberg from 1946 to 1950, Wagenbreth earned his doctorate in 1958. rer. nat. From 1958 he was employed by the geological service in Halle (Saale) . In 1962 he was appointed lecturer for geology and technical rock science at the University of Architecture and Construction in Weimar . In 1968 he received his habilitation . From 1979 Wagenbreth taught history and documentation of the means of production at the Technical University of Dresden .

In 1992 he was appointed to the Bergakademie Freiberg, where he took over the management of the newly founded Institute for the History of Science and Technology, which he held until 1994. At the same time Wagenbreth took over the chair for the history of technology . After his retirement in 1995, Wagenbreth continued to work as a lecturer for the history of technology at the TU Bergakademie until 2008. Helmuth Albrecht took over his chair .

In addition to his teaching activities, Wagenbreth published around 500 geoscientific and mining history publications, some of which have become standard works. He achieved particular merits through his commitment to the preservation of the monuments of the mining and metallurgy industry and historical mills in Saxony. Wagenbreth contributed to the creation of the "Atlas on the history and regional studies of Saxony" and developed the map "Natural resources and mining". In addition, at his instigation, thirteen memorial stones were erected from 1975 to mark the flint line in various cities in East Germany.


In 1979 he received the Abraham Gottlob Werner Medal from the Society for Geological Sciences of the GDR . In 1998 he became an honorary member of the Thuringian Geological Association . Wagenbreth was honored with the Saxon Order of Merit on November 2, 2000 . In 2006 he was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit (1st class) , but he refused to accept it. In 2007 he received the Andreas Möller History Prize from the Foundation for Art and Culture of the Kreissparkasse Freiberg.

Works (selection)

  • together with Fritz Hofmann and Otto Fritzsche: Old Freiberg mine buildings and mine facilities ( dedicated to Prof. Dr.-Ing.Otto Fritzsche on the occasion of his eightieth birthday) , Freiberg research books D19, Akademie Verlag, Berlin 1957
  • Geological map reading and profile drawing , Teubner, Leipzig 1958
  • Bernhard von Cotta . Life and work of a German geologist in the 19th century , Freiberger Forschungshefte D36, Verlag für Grundstoffindindustrie, Leipzig 1965
  • Technical rock science (basic scientific knowledge for civil engineers, vol. 3), Verlag für Bauwesen, Berlin 1970
  • together with Walter Steiner : Geological forays. Landscape and geological history between Cape Arkona and Fichtelberg , Verlag für Grundstoffindindustrie, Leipzig 1982
  • Goethe and the Ilmenau mining industry , Verlag NFG, Weimar 1983 (new edition 2006 ISBN 978-3-86012-286-0 )
  • Technical monuments in the German Democratic Republic , Verlag für Grundstoffindindustrie, Leipzig 1983
  • together with J. Klengel: Ingenieurgeologie für Bauingenieure , Verlag für Bauwesen, Berlin 1984
  • Freiberg mining. Technical monuments and history , Verlag für Grundstofftindustrie, Leipzig 1986 ISBN 3-342-00117-8
  • together with Eberhard Wächtler : Mining in the Ore Mountains. Technical monuments and history , Verlag für Grundstofftindustrie, Leipzig 1990, ISBN 3-342-00509-2
  • The Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg and its history. Shown in tables and pictures , Verlag für Grundstoffindindustrie, Leipzig / Stuttgart 1994, ISBN 3-342-00562-9
  • Mills. History of the flour mills. technical monuments in central and eastern Germany , publishing house for basic industry, Leipzig / Stuttgart 1994, ISBN 3-342-00672-2
  • History of geology in Germany , Enke im Thieme Verlag, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-13-118361-6
  • together with Helmut Düntzsch and Albert Gieseler: The history of the steam engine . historical development, industrial history, technical monuments , Verlag Aschendorff, Münster 2002, ISBN 3-402-05264-4
  • Christian Friedrich Brendel . Life and work of an important engineer in the first half of the 19th century , Freiberg Research Booklet D221, Verlag der TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Freiberg 2006
  • The lignite industry in Central Germany: geology, history, material evidence. Sax Verlag, 2011 ISBN 978-3-86729-058-6


  • Peter Lange, Walter Steiner: Otfried Wagenbreth for his 60th birthday. In: Sächsische Heimatblätter , issue 1/1987, pp. 46–47.
  • Siegfried H. Richter: Prof. Dr. Otfried Wagenbreth: Bibliography of his publication. Publications of the university library " Georgius Agricola ", issue 130, 1995. ISBN 3-86012-012-3 .
  • Your own life in the flow of time: Memoirs of Otfried Wagenbreth (born April 7, 1927 in Zeitz); written down in Freiberg 2010-2012 . TU Bergakademie Freiberg, 2015. ISBN 978-3-86012-523-6 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b Obituary for distinguished scientist of the TU Bergakademie Freiberg Prof. Dr. Otfried Wagenbreth. TU Bergakademie Freiberg, May 30, 2017, accessed on May 30, 2017 .
  2. Petrik Wittwika: Otfried Wagenbreth: Famous geologist and historian has its roots in Zeitz. In: Mitteldeutsche Zeitung. August 6, 2017. Retrieved August 6, 2017 .
  3. ^ Honorary members of the TGV