IT IS hard to consider this postcard from the beginning of the 20th century as picturesque. But it must be noted that the metallurgy industry that has dominated Krompachy since the beginning of the 19th century has been not only the pride of this small town but also of much of eastern Slovakia.
Krompachy is an old mining town. We can view much of the history of Slovakia through the lens of the first copper- and ironworks that were built in Krompachy in 1804, followed by a more modern ironworks in 1897.
The economic crisis following World War I caused operations to cease. but in 1937 a Swiss concern built a new copper processing company on the foundations of the former ironworks. The outbreak of World War II helped this factory, as it became part of Reichswerke Hermann Göring, serving the interests of Nazi Germany. Towards the end of the war production ceased when Slovak guerrillas fighting the Nazis destroyed parts of the factory with several mines. But the heaviest blow came in 1945, when the Germans moved most equipment to the west and destroyed the rest.
Copper processing began again at the Krompachy works in 1951 and continues to this day.
9. Jan 2012 at 0:00 | By Branislav Chovan