History of Augsburg

History of Augsburg

After Trier, Augsburg is the second oldest documented city of Germany. As the capital of Swabia it is especially known for the Fuggers and as a city of peace; but, Augsburg offers even more.


Augsburg was founded in 15 B.C. by the Roman emperor Caesar Augustus as “Augusta Vindelicorum.” In 1985 the Renaissance city on the Lech River celebrated its 2000 year anniversary. In the course of only a few years, Augsburg became a significant city in the region. The current Maximilianstraße, a glorious road of the Renaissance, conforms with the Roman Via Claudia which led to Verona. Today it is still the main axis of the historical district of the city.

As of the 13th century Augsburg was a free imperial city. A document from the year 1316 recognizes this imperial immediacy for Augsburg and thus granted Augsburg complete customs, tax and judicial rights.

In the 15th and 16th centuries Augsburg developed into a significant center of trade in Europe, and was home to the Welser and Fugger families who were among the world’s wealthiest and most powerful families for an entire century. The textile trade especially contributed to the rise of Augsburg. The Fuggers founded the first welfare settlement in the world (1516 to 1523), the so-called Fuggerei, which still houses needy citizens of Augsburg today. Emperor Maximilian I held “Reichstag” (parliament) in Augsburg and so created a political stage for himself here.

The 16th and 17th centuries are considered the golden age of Augsburg. During this time bankers of the imperial state financed the emperor, the city was a first-class center for art, and, with the works of silversmiths to printers to scientific equipment Augsburg became known all over the world.
Architecturally Augsburg is influenced by the master builder Elias Holl (1573 to 1646). Many large public buildings are his work, for example City Hall, the Stadtmetzgerei, the Rotes Tor and the Zeughaus. Adrien de Vries with his fountains must also be noted as an influential designer of the city.

Among the most popular natives of Augsburg are: Jakob Fugger the Rich, Leopold Mozart, Bert Brecht, Rudolf Diesel, Helmut Haller, and many more.

Industrial center in Bavaria

Today Augsburg is Bavaria’s third largest city with a population of approximately 300,000 and has developed into a significant center for industry in Bavaria.

Along with a number of institutions such as

  • universities
  • center for exhibitions and conferences
  • Bavarian center for environmental competence
  • seat of the Bavarian state office for environmental protection
  • seat of Chamber of Commerce in Swabia
  • seat of Chamber of Crafts in Swabia
  • diocese center in Augsburg
Data systems technology:

  • AKDB (data processing)
  • Beta Systems Software AG (document management)
  • BMK professional electronics GmbH (circuit board placement)
  • BÖWE SYSTEC AG (paper management systems)
  • Fujitsu Technology Solutions GmbH (personal computer)
  • NCR GmbH (hardware, software)
  • OFS Brightwave Deutschland GmbH (cable)
  • PLG AG (IT services)
Mechanical engineering /Mechatronics:

  • Faurecia Emissions Control Technologie, Germany GmbH (exhaust systems, catalytic converters)
  • KUKA Roboter AG (robotic systems)
  • MAN Diesel SE (diesel engines)
  • manroland AG (printing presses)
  • MTU Onsite Energy GmbH (engines)
  • MDE Dezentrale Energiesysteme GmbH (gas engines and energy systems)
  • Renk AG (transmissions and gear units)
  • WashTec AG (car wash technology)
  • HOSOKAWA Alpine AG (powder and particle processing)

  • Premium Aerotec GmbH (Airbus, Eurofighter)
  • MT Aerospace AG (Ariane, Airbus)
Further large companies in other branches:

  • Pharmaceutical products: betapharm Arzneimittel GmbH
  • Chemistry: PCI Augsburg GmbH
  • Glass processing: Osram GmbH (fluorescent lamps and tubes, energy-efficient lamps)
  • Cosmetics: Dr. Grandel GmbH
  • Laboratory services: synlab Augsburg GmbH
  • Paper manufacture: UPM GmbH
  • Textiles: Freudenberg Haushaltsprodukte KG (trademark Vileda)
  • Publishing: publishing group Weltbild GmbH, media group Pressedruck