THE MUSICTOWN
 
   
  Markneukirchen is well-known as a centre of German musical instrument making. The town is situated 468 metres above sea level. Markneukirchen is more than 800 years old. In about 1650 Markneukirchen was a small town with nearly 600 inhabitants, most of them being craftsmen, farmers, and hauliers. As one result of the Re-Catholicization in Bohemia citizens from Graslica moved to Saxony being geographical neighbours.Among them there had been twelve violinmakers, who founded the first German violinmaker guild in 1677. Beginning in the middle of the 19th century the craftsmen became more and more dependent upon salers as well as an increase in the division of labour amongst the neighbouring villages. The fact that labels of famous instrument makers have often been placed into certain violins, in order to reach a higher price, causes confusion among their owners still today. The distributors, however, did not do any work selflessy.Up until 1945 over 20 millionares were to be counted in our small town. From 1893 till 1916 a Consulate of the United States was opened – just to simplify the exportation overseas.
Both world wars, tremendous inflation, and the World Economic Crises negativly influenced the production of musical instruments. During the time of the GDR (German Democratic Republic) mass production played an important role. Today, there remains no longer any mass production, it being turned over to lands with low production costs such as Asia.In the present day all orchestral instruments are mostly hand made in over 100 workshops, and produced in 5 middle class factories.