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Fișier:Coa Cugir AB RO.png Cugir

Cugir is a town in Alba county, the central settlement of the Breadfield, in Romania. About 45 kilometers south-west of Alba-Iulia, the capital of the county, and 300 meters above sea level at the base of the Surianu Mountains.

Throughout the history the name of the town is mentioned in many documents under different names in different languages, therefore the old settlement "villa Kunentum" becomes in 1493 villa Kudzyr, in 1566 Kwczyr, in 1599 - Kuchir, in 1656 - Kuchjir, in 1673 - Kucsir, in 1733 - Kuser, in 1750 - Kudsier, 1760-1762 - Kudzser, in 1805 Kudsir and in 1850 - Kusir.

Numerous archeological discoveries prove that life in the region flourished as early as the Bronze Age, around the 10th century BC, Cugir being part of the territory known as "The Iron Gates of Transylvania", a region famous for its natural iron resources. In 88-44 BC, king Burebista, the most powerful of the kings of Thrace, according to the historian Acronion, establishes the new capital in the area, at Sarmisegetusa Regia (located in the Surianu Mountains west of Cugir). In this period of time the settlement of Cugir(villa Kunentum) is known as an important center for metal extracting and processing with its famous workshops producing tools, weapons and coins.

In the mid 18th century the Habsburg Empire authorities established the "Frontier Police" in Transylvania. They tried to recruit also Romanians from the southern Transylvania between Baraolt and Orăştie but the locals put up a fierce resistance against the enrollment. The population revolted due to a policy of forced removal and deportation used to convince the peoples to join in and a bloody massacre took place in the place known today as the old market of the town. Severe clashes occurred again in the area when the authorities decided to "brake" the neighboring villages Şibot and Vinerea to establish the 4th company. Finally, after severe conflicts and pressure, in 1764, 6 regiments were established and in 1768 another battalion was formed so that the frontier police in Transylvania was of approx. 17000 soldiers.

After the lost of Silesia, the authorities and the Austrian business begun to invest more and more founds in the mining and manufacturing industry in Transylvania. In 1764 Empress Maria Theresa of Austria begins to allow long-term loans without interest to concessionaires that pledge to exploit the mines and the state and concessionaire manufactories used free workers brought from Styria, Carinthia, Tyrol, Slovakia or Dalmatia, but the local men, the peasants represented the main work force. Due to the industrialisation, a great number of Romanian villages and their grounds, pastures, agricultural land and forest, were seized. At the end of the 18th century factories for metal processing were founded in Cugir and Sibişel, just after 15 years after the suppression of the Revolt of Horea, Cloşca and Crişan so that to exploit the mineral resources but also to insufflate obedience towards the Empire. According to documents, the "Iron and Steel factory" was established in Cugir in the year 1799, one of the first siderurgy factories in Transylvania and since then the history of the town revolves around it.

After the end of World War I, the factory became owned by the Romanian state and during World War II its production was seized by the Nazi Germany for war purposes. Since 1946 the factory oriented its production towards military components and house appliances especially washing machines. Also it became the top Romanian producer of sewing machines for industrial and private purposes.

The town is a heavy industrialised one, with at least half of the total working age population engaged in industrial activities, and around 30% engaged in lumbering activities. The S.C. Uzinele Mecanice Cugir S.A. is the main employer in town and it has diversified its production to include along the traditional products automotive components and firearms, and a large part of its production is destined for export.