Zábřeh is a town in the Olomouc Region of the Czech Republic. The name “Zábřeh” consists of two parts. The prefix “zá”, meaning “behind”, and the noun “břeh” meaning “riverbank”. It is a reference to the nearby Moravská Sázava river. The town’s railway station is named „Zábřeh na Moravě“ (literally Zábřeh in Moravia) to distinguish it from another station called Zábřeh, now part of Dolní Benešov in Silesia, therefore the town is sometimes called “Zábřeh na Moravě”, however its official name is just Zábřeh”.
Zábřeh settlement was founded on the left bank of the river Moravian Sázava. Its main function was apparently to protect the ford across the river. The first mention of Zábřeh is on the list of Brno Landtag of the year 1254. The city was founded around the second half of the 13th century German-speaking colonists who came probably from the overcrowded German Saxony. In 1278 it became a city Zábřeh.
Historically Zábřeh was a textile town profiting from its location next to the international railway. Textile companies bankrupted in the 1990s due to former communist administration and cheap Asian competition. Therefore the west part of the town is occupied by brownfield land which hasn’t been revitalized yet and is sporadically used as warehouses, workshops and as recreation space.