Coordinates: 51°23′N 07°40′E / 51.383°N 7.667°E / 51.383; 7.667
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Coat of arms of Iserlohn
Location of Iserlohn within Märkischer Kreis district
Märkischer KreisNorth Rhine-WestphaliaOberbergischer KreisEnnepe-Ruhr-KreisHagenDortmundUnna (district)Soest (district)HochsauerlandkreisOlpe (district)AltenaMeinerzhagenNeuenradeKierspeHalverHerscheidMendenNachrodt-WiblingwerdePlettenbergSchalksmühleHemerLüdenscheidIserlohnBalveWerdohl
Iserlohn is located in Germany
Iserlohn is located in North Rhine-Westphalia
Coordinates: 51°23′N 07°40′E / 51.383°N 7.667°E / 51.383; 7.667
StateNorth Rhine-Westphalia
Admin. regionArnsberg
DistrictMärkischer Kreis
 • Mayor (2020–25) Michael Joithe[1] (Die Iserlohner)
 • Total125.5 km2 (48.5 sq mi)
494 m (1,621 ft)
 • Total91,873
 • Density730/km2 (1,900/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
Postal codes
Dialling codes02371 (Iserlohn)
02374 (Iserlohn-Letmathe)
02304 (Schwerte,Iserlohn-Hennen)
02352 (Altena,parts of Iserlohn-Kesbern)
02378 (Fröndenberg- Langschede, Iserlohn-Drüpplingsen)
Vehicle registrationMK,
IS until 1974
LS until 1979
Town hall
Villa Wessel

Iserlohn (German: [iːzɐˈloːn] ; Westphalian: Iserlaun) is a city in the Märkischer Kreis district, in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is the largest city by population and area within the district and the Sauerland region.


Iserlohn is located at the north end of the Sauerland near the Ruhr river, in West-Central Germany.


The Pancratius church (also called Bauernkirche) is believed to have been founded in around 985, but the first written document mentioning lon dates only from 1150.[citation needed] In 1237 the Count of the Mark gave Iserlohn municipal rights. In 1975 the city, which had been an urban district before, incorporated the surrounding ex-municipalities of Letmathe, Hennen, Sümmern and Kesbern, and became part of the district "Märkischer Kreis". As a larger mid-sized city, Iserlohn, however, still has a special status compared to most other municipalities in the district. This means that the city takes on tasks more usually performed by the district, such as social and youth affairs, hence it is comparable to an urban district.



The current mayor of Iserlohn is Michael Joithe, a member of the voter group Die Iserlohner. The most recent mayoral election was held on 13 September 2020, with a runoff held on 27 September, and the results were as follows:

Candidate Party First round Second round
Votes % Votes %
Eva-Barbara Kirchhoff Christian Democratic Union 13,275 39.8 11,912 49.8
Michael Joithe Die Iserlohner 5,273 15.8 12,007 50.2
Martin Luckert Social Democratic Party 5,015 15.0
Manuel Huff The Left 2,864 8.6
Martin Isbruch Alliance 90/The Greens 2,692 8.1
Daniel Bläsing Alternative for Germany 1,608 4.8
Claudio Vurro Independent 1,521 4.6
Hans Herbers Independent Voters' Association 592 1.8
Martin Radojcic Independent 233 0.7
Robert Gustävel Independent 194 0.6
Michael Klammt Independent 129 0.4
Valid votes 33,396 99.2 23,919 98.3
Invalid votes 279 0.8 419 1.7
Total 33,675 100.0 24,338 100.0
Electorate/voter turnout 72,958 46.2 72,849 33.4
Source: City of Iserlohn (1st round, 2nd round)

City council[edit]

The Iserlohn city council governs the city alongside the Mayor. The most recent city council election was held on 13 September 2020, and the results were as follows:

Party Votes % +/- Seats +/-
Christian Democratic Union (CDU) 11,817 35.6 Decrease 3.6 24 Increase 4
Social Democratic Party (SPD) 6,337 19.1 Decrease 13.3 13 Decrease 3
Die Iserlohner 4,397 13.2 New 9 New
Alliance 90/The Greens (Grüne) 3,713 11.2 Increase 4.3 8 Increase 5
The Left (Die Linke) 2,498 7.5 Increase 0.5 5 Increase 1
Alternative for Germany (AfD) 1,985 6.0 Decrease 0.2 4 Increase 1
Free Democratic Party (FDP) 1,483 4.5 Increase 0.4 3 Increase 1
Independent Voters' Association (UWG) 960 2.9 Increase 0.7 2 Increase 1
Independent Radojcic 43 0.1 New 0 New
Valid votes 33,233 98.8
Invalid votes 420 1.2
Total 33,653 100.0 68 Increase 18
Electorate/voter turnout 72,958 46.1
Source: City of Iserlohn

Points of interest[edit]

The Dechenhöhle caves were discovered in 1868 during the construction of the railway line Hagen-Iserlohn. 360 metres are accessible for visitors, and there are many stalactites and stalagmites in the cave.

The Danzturm, located on the southern hill overlooking the old city, is a landmark and featured on the logo of the local brewery (Iserlohner). The tower has views of the valley and surrounding hills and is open to the public with a small inn at the base.

In the 18th century, the town became known for its Iserlohn boxes, a form of tobacco or snuff box with an engraved or embossed lid that often featured an image of former Prussian King Frederick the Great.[3]


The city is home of the Iserlohn Roosters, a DEL (first-division) ice hockey team. The Roosters joined the DEL in 2000 and developed from a low-budget team to a solid one that regularly competes for a Playoff-spot. The club plays its home games at the Eissporthalle Iserlohn, which holds 4,967 spectators. The original club, EC Deilinghofen, was founded in 1959 and went bankrupt in 1987. The second club, ECD Sauerland, existed from 1988 to 1994. In 1994, Iserlohner EC was founded.


Iserlohn has 15 elementary schools and 12 secondary schools (3 Gymnasien, 1 Gesamtschule, 3 Realschulen, 5 Hauptschulen).

Two universities of applied sciences are also located in the city. The headquarters, together with a major branch, of the South Westphalia University of Applied Sciences (also: Fachhochschule Südwestfalen (FH SWF)) offering engineering and informatics programmes is located in the city centre on Alexanderhöhe.[4] The Business and Information Technology School (BiTS) is a private, state-approved business school with a campus near the Seilersee.[5]


The Schützenfest is a famous festival which takes place every year, and is central to Iserlohner's cultural life - and the town's identity. It is held at the Parkhalle, Alexanderhöhe.

At the same time as the Shooters festival (Schützenfest) the Iserlohn Peace committee (FriedensPlenum) has held a 3 day free benefit music festival around the farmers church (Bauernkirche) since 1991.

Coat of arms[edit]

Iserlohn's coat of arms features, in the middle, Saint Pancras (St. Pancratius), who is patron of the oldest church in Iserlohn. He is depicted between two towers of the historic city wall. The checked fess below the saint is derived from the arms of the Counts of the Mark.

Twin towns – sister cities[edit]

Iserlohn is twinned with:[6]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Wahlergebnisse in NRW Kommunalwahlen 2020, Land Nordrhein-Westfalen, accessed 21 June 2021.
  2. ^ "Bevölkerung der Gemeinden Nordrhein-Westfalens am 31. Dezember 2021" (in German). Landesbetrieb Information und Technik NRW. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  3. ^ Fleming, John & Hugh Honour. (1977) The Penguin Dictionary of Decorative Arts. London: Allen Lane, p. 399. ISBN 0713909412
  4. ^ "FH-SWF Iserlohn". 28 August 2013.
  5. ^ [1] Archived 27 January 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Partnerstädte". (in German). Iserlohn. Retrieved 24 November 2019.

Further reading[edit]

  • Götz Bettge: Iserlohn-Lexikon. Iserlohn 1987. ISBN 3-922885-37-3.
  • Ernst Dossmann: Iserlohner Tabaksdosen erzählen. Ein Einblick in die wirtschaftlichen, gesellschaftlichen, politischen und militärischen Verhältnisse und das Aufblühen von Gewerbe, Industrie und Handel im märkisch-westfälischen Wirtschaftsraum während der Regierungszeit Friedrichs des Großen, dargestellt an bekannten Iserlohner Industrieerzeugnissen. 1981. ISBN 3-922885-01-2.
  • Margret Kirchhoff: Pulsschläge einer Stadt. Die Oberste Stadtkirche Iserlohn – Zeitbilder und Momentaufnahmen. 2003. Eigenverlag Dr. Margret Kirchhoff.
  • Fritz Kühn: Liebes altes Iserlohn. (released about 1956). Westfalenverlag Dortmund
  • Peter Müller und Günter Stalp: Unsere gute alte Straßenbahn. Eine Reise in die Vergangenheit. Iserlohn 1995. ISBN 3-922885-78-0.
  • Hans-Herbert Mönnig Verlag Iserlohn (no author mentioned): Iserlohn – unsere lebendige Stadt. Ein Bildband von Iserlohnern für Iserlohner. Iserlohn 1997. ISBN 3-922885-93-4.
  • Heinz Stoob (†): Westfälischer Städteatlas; Band: I; 9 Teilband (Stadtmappe Iserlohn). Im Auftrage der Historischen Kommission für Westfalen und mit Unterstützung des Landschaftsverbandes Westfalen-Lippe; edited by Heinz Stoob and Wilfried Ehbrecht. Dortmund-Altenbeken, 1975. ISBN 3-89115-336-8.

External links[edit]