Staßfurt (ˈʃtasfʊʁt) is a town in the Salzlandkreis
Salzland is a district in the middle of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. It is bounded by the districts Harz, Börde, Magdeburg, Jerichower Land, Anhalt-Bitterfeld, Mansfeld-Südharz and Saalekreis.- History :...

 district, in Saxony-Anhalt
Saxony-Anhalt is a landlocked state of Germany. Its capital is Magdeburg and it is surrounded by the German states of Lower Saxony, Brandenburg, Saxony, and Thuringia.Saxony-Anhalt covers an area of...

, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

. It is situated on both sides of the river Bode
Bode River
The Bode is a river in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, a left tributary of the Saale.It rises in the Harz mountains and drains them in a northerly direction. After it discharges into the Saale at Nienburg...

, approximately 15 km (9.3 mi) northeast of Aschersleben
Aschersleben is a town in the Salzlandkreis district, in Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. It is situated approx. 22 km east of Quedlinburg, and 45 km northwest of Halle .-Pre-20th century:...

, and 30 km (18.6 mi) south of Magdeburg
Magdeburg , is the largest city and the capital city of the Bundesland of Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Magdeburg is situated on the Elbe River and was one of the most important medieval cities of Europe....

. Pop. (2005) 23,538.

It was one of the chief seats of the German salt-producing industry. It is still surrounded in part by the ruins of its ancient walls, but, with the exception of the parish church of St. John (15th century), there are no buildings worthy of special notice.

Although saline springs are mentioned here as early as the 13th century, the first attempt to bore for salt was not made until 1839, while the systematic exploitation of the salt-beds, to which the town is indebted for its prosperity, dates only from 1856. The shafts reached deposits of salt at a depth of 850 ft. (190 m); but the finer and purer layers lie more than 100 ft. (31 m) below the surface. The rock-salt is excavated by blasting. Besides the rock-salt, the deposits of Stassfurt yield a considerable quantity of deliquescent salts and other saline products, which have encouraged the foundation of numerous chemical factories in the town and in the neighboring village of Leopoldshall (currently part of Staßfurt). The rock-salt works are mainly government property, while the chemical factories are in private hands.

Stassfurt Potash deposit

The Stassfurt Potash
Potash is the common name for various mined and manufactured salts that contain potassium in water-soluble form. In some rare cases, potash can be formed with traces of organic materials such as plant remains, and this was the major historical source for it before the industrial era...

 deposit, a part of the same evaporite
Evaporite is a name for a water-soluble mineral sediment that result from concentration and crystallization by evaporation from an aqueous solution. There are two types of evaporate deposits, marine which can also be described as ocean deposits, and non-marine which are found in standing bodies of...

 sequence that hosts the salt mines, is notable historically as the site of the earliest large-scale mining of potash for fertilizer
Fertilizer is any organic or inorganic material of natural or synthetic origin that is added to a soil to supply one or more plant nutrients essential to the growth of plants. A recent assessment found that about 40 to 60% of crop yields are attributable to commercial fertilizer use...

, beginning in 1861.

Notable residents

  • Karl Wilhelm von Willisen
    Karl Wilhelm von Willisen
    Karl Wilhelm Freiherr von Willisen was a Prussian general.-Biography :Willisen was born in Staßfurt as the third son of the mayor of Staßfurt, Karl Wilhelm Hermann von Willisen and his wife Friederike von Trotha .- Early career :Willisen was educated in the Prussian Cadet Corps and joined the...

     (1790–1879), Prussia
    Prussia was a German kingdom and historic state originating out of the Duchy of Prussia and the Margraviate of Brandenburg. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organized and effective army. Prussia shaped the history...

    n general
  • Wilhelm Steinkopf
    Wilhelm Steinkopf
    Georg Wilhelm Steinkopf was a German chemist. Today he is mostly remembered for his work on the production of mustard gas during World War I.-Life:...

    (1879–1949), German chemist
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