In Eberswalde Blechen saw the brass-works on the Finow Canal, one of the first metalworking factories in the Mark Brandenburg. Impressed by the sheer size of the works, he made several drawings on the spot, which served as the basis for this painting. What appears as prosaic industrial reality in the sketches is ennobled in the oil painting and at the same time distanced by the figures in the foreground. An angler sits thoughtfully on the banks of the Finow Canal, while two other fishermen are pulling in their nets: an idyll very much in the tradition of the seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries, while the rolling mill rises up threateningly in the background like a mighty fort. Heavy, almost leaden smoke pours out of the chimney stacks into the clear, yellowish evening sky, casting a greenish-black shadow on the water. This work counts as one of the earliest European depictions of industrial sites, along with Christian Koester’s 1810 Stauf Copperwire Works with Neu-Leinigen and Alfred Rethel’s 1834 Harkort Factory.