Esbjerg is the largest city on the Danish North Sea coast and is known for its fishing and industrial port.
Around 1970, the 5th largest city in Denmark, according to population figures, experienced the heyday of fishing: about 600 fishing boats had their home port in Esbjerg, of which only very few remain today. In the meantime, Esbjerg’s port has focused on wind power and the offshore, oil and gas industry.
Energy metropolis and port city
But anyone who believes that the energy metropolis of Esbjerg in the southwest of Jutland is defined only by its port has been far from right. Because the soul of the city is also located outside the 12 km long port area.
When the two duchies of Schleswig and Holstein were split off from the Danish Kingdom after the 2nd Schleswig War in 1864, Denmark also lost its most important North Sea port, which was then located in Altona. It quickly became clear that a replacement had to be created, but there were some differences at the beginning of the finding phase regarding the location. At first, Hjerting was in great conversation, but then the choice fell on the at that time completely inconspicuous Esbjerg (in German Esberg), which did not yet have an official founding name.
After all, Esbjerg was nothing more than a tiny settlement of some fishermen who had gathered here and finding a name for a collection of huts for just 20 residents (as of 1801) was quite superfluous. The further development of the population was even declining in some cases in the next few years and when the question of a new Danish North Sea port was about Esbjerg, only 30 people lived there. But just two years after the official foundation of the city in 1868, there were already 460 inhabitants and only 12 years later there were already 1,529 Esbjergers.
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