In the Footsteps of the Liebieg Family

The story of the Liebig family perfectly exemplifies the industrial boom and its effects on the development of the city, its new lifestyle and culture. The Liebiegs left an indelible mark on the Liberec architecture due to the fact that they were not only skilled entrepreneurs, but also enlightened engineers and generous patrons.INCITY App.

The founder of the dynasty of textile tycoons was Johann Liebieg Sr (1802-1870) who came from Broumov in Eastern Bohemia and settled in Liberec in 1818. His tenacity and hard work made it possible for him to evolve from a simple drapery worker to a small trader and eventually to one of the most successful industrialists in the monarchy. His business activities were not limited to textile production and Liberec. The Liberec factory Johann Liebieg & Co. was closely connected to the creation of settlements for employees known as Liebieg small town (Liebiegovo městečko, No. 13).  The following people were involved in its construction: the founder of the dynasty by managing the construction of the workers’ house, his descendants – daughter Marie Liebiegová (1835-1914), by initiating the construction of the social facilities for the female workers’ children and the church of St.Vincent de Paula, partly his son Johann Liebieg the younger (1836-1917) and especially his grandson Theodor Liebieg Jr (1872-1939).

For their own use, the family built three representative seats: The Villa of Johann Liebieg Jr (No. 4)., the Villa of Theodor Liebieg Jr (No. 11) and the Villa of the founder’s son Heinrich Liebieg  (1839-1904)  (No. 8) , who is known today primarily as an art collector and patron. He was also instrumental in the construction of a tourist restaurant with a lookout tower known as Liberecká výšina (No. 7). The founder’s brother Franz Liebieg (1799-1878) left the company in 1831 because of poor health. After his recovery he established his own company in Vesec. He is also connected with the construction of the tomb (No. 2) at the former civic cemetery. His descendants are known primarily as generous contributors in the construction of the new Liberec town hall (No. 1) in 1893.  In 1881 his son Ludwig Liebieg (1846–1909) bought the house No. 20/V in the present day street 8. března, which was built by the factory owner Adolf Schmidt based on the architectural design of Gustav Sachers on the site of the old post office.

The escutcheon displays the coat of arms of the family, which marked the Liebiegs’ newly acquired noble status. Johann Liebieg Sr. and Franz Liebieg Sr. were ennobled for their achievements in the industry; the first was awarded the hereditary title of Baron and the latter was knighted. The Liebiegs cooperated with a number of architects and engineers from Liberec and abroad. Nevertheless, the most fruitful cooperation the Liebiegs established was with a Nuremberg architect, Jakob Schmeissner, who deserves to be called their chief architect.



Liberecká výšina Lookout Tower

The romantic observation tower with a restaurant resembling a medieval castle was built by Heinrich Liebieg.
Address:Wolkerova 251Liberec, 460 15GPS:50°46'41.8''N; 15°05'29.2''E[Map]

A castle that’s really not a castle at all

If the White Lady were to walk around somewhere in Liberec at night, it would be here. This mediaeval little castle on the edge of the forests of the Jizera has everything to set the scene. The castle moat with its bridge, a stone gate and a courtyard with a wishing well make for a truly romantic sight. Not to mention the 25-metre stone tower. 

Mediaeval from the beginning of the 20th century

Has that got you in a nice historical mood? We’re a bit ashamed to admit that by “mediaeval” here, we mean from the beginning of the 20th century, as the high ground was not built until 1900-1901, following plans drawn up by Nuremberg architects Josef Schmitz and Jakob Schmeissner. They are said to have been inspired by the Luginsland tower in the Nuremberg imperial castle. The construction work was funded by textile magnate Heinrich Liebieg and was initially called "Hohenhabsurg", later "Heinrich Liebiegwarte", and finally, from 1945, "Liberec Heights". In order to create a faithful illusion of age, the architects used masonry from demolished buildings in Nuremberg. This allegedly came from the renovation of St. Sebaldus Church and old roof tiles from historical houses. 

Liberec with a view

Come and enjoy some romance with the beautiful view from the tower and a bite to eat in the stylish restaurant. To get here, just follow the yellow footpath markers from Lidové sady park; it's only a kilometre walk up a gentle hill from Liberec Zoo. You can also get here by car, of course, and can park right next to the building.
Opening hours

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all months all the days of the week 10:30 - 22:00 open