The oldest known documented reference of Eibau dates from 1352 and is to be found in the documents of the deanery of Zittau. Eibau was originally structured as a farming village with farms on both sides of a little watercourse. From the middle of the 16th century onwards, Eibau developed into a weavers village.
Numerous preserved half-timbered houses are still evidence of the tradition of linen weaving and of the construction workers’ craftsmanship of past centuries. Particularly noteworthy are the linen cloth traders’ houses, so-called “Faktorenhäuser”, with their timber frame construction and their precious architectural details. They bear witness of the local factors’ prosperous trade with linen cloth in the 18th and 19th century. It is thanks to them and their trading activity that Eibau became known supra-regionally. Until 1850, Eibau was holding the leading role among all Upper Lusatian weavers villages.
With the beginning of industrialisation in the early 19th century, linen cloth traders started to establish mechanical weaving mills, which contributed significantly to the character of Eibau as weavers village until the collapse of the GDR in 1989.
Brewing is another deep-rooted tradition in Eibau, and in the southern Lusatia in general. In 1810, the rural brewery of Eibau was established on an estate, which back then belonged to the city of Zittau.
Yet some other interesting historical facts are, amongst others, the attempt of porcelain production in a manufactory in Eibau made between 1858 and 1862 as well as the manufacture of firebricks in the former firebricks factory from 1909 until 1937.
To illustrate the agricultural development of Eibau, it should also be mentioned that a dairy was built up in 1945 existing until 1990, and a plant of dairy cows was inaugurated in 1968, which is still in operation. In 1991, a farmers’ cooperative continuing the agricultural tradition was founded.