Lange on the Rocks
Timepieces from A. Lange & Söhne on rocks and minerals from Saxony provide a reminder of the origins of the Federal State’s wealth and culture.
A long way below the Ore Mountains – the homeland of A. Lange & Söhne – hidden treasures await discovery. At present geologists are exploring probably one of the largest tin deposits in the world. As early as the Middle Ages enormous silver finds triggered the “First Mining Rumours” – the first silver fever – in the Federal State. The Earth’s treasures formed the basis of an unprecedented cultural and scientific period of blossoming and also the wealth of the Saxon Sovreign Electors (Kurfürsten). Major innovations such as the discovery of European porcelain in Meißen and masterpieces of craftsmanship occurred in this period such as those which can still be admired today in the “Green Vault” of the Dresden Royal Palace. The Saxon precision watchmaking industry of the 18th century also has its roots in this development.
Amongst the many famous Dresden watchmakers of that period, there was one who stands out because of his forward-looking thoughts and actions: it is Ferdinand A. Lange, who brings watchmaking to the Ore Mountains in 1845. This was a time when the silver mines in the Eastern Ore Mountains had long been abandonned and the people were suffering from poverty and hunger. With his visionary concept of a new line of business he laid the foundations for the second economic boom in the region. The circle closes here.
The attractive combination of timepieces from the current collection of A. Lange & Söhne and rocks and minerals from the Ore Mountains links the origins of wealth and culture in the Middle Ages to the modern Saxon precision watchmaking of the 21st century. The subjects originate from the geological collections of the Technical University of the Saxon mining town of Freiberg. With the “terra mineralia” in the Freudenstein Castle Museum it possesses the largest and most beautiful exhibition of minerals in Germany with more than 3,500 minerals, precious stones and meteorites since 2008. Numerous works of art of the Saxon Court were created during previous centuries by talented craftsmen from these and other rocks and minerals originating from the Ore Mountains.