SAARBRÜCKEN, a city in West Germany, is on the Saar River near the French border and 100 miles (160 km) southwest of Frankfurt-am-Main. Although essentially a modern city, there are some interesting historic buildings. The 18th century Ludwigskirche is built on the plan of a Greek cross and has an octagonal tower. St. Amual’s Church is 13th-14th century Gothic, with a Baroque tower. There is an 18th century castle that belonged to the counts of NassauSaarbrücken.
The city is the capital of the Saarland and the center of the state’s industrial and cultural life. It serves as a rail center for a large industrial and coalmining region and manufactures steel products, machinery, cement, chemicals, and clothing.
Saarbrücken became the capital of the Saar Territory in 1919, after having frequently changed hands between France and Germany. In 1957, when the territory became the Saarland, a state of Germany, Saarbrücken continued as the capital.