The first settlements date from 1500 BC. Celtic tribe named Brigantii is mentioned by Strabo as a sub-tribe in these region of the Alps. In the 5th century BC, the Celts settled at Brigantion, which was one of their most heavily fortified locations. After battles in 15 BC, the Romans conquered Brigantion and the city became a Roman camp. It was conferred the status of a municipality (Brigantium) around 50 AD and was the seat of the Roman admiralty for Lake Constance. In 259/60 Brigantium was destroyed by the Alemanni, a Germanic people who settled in the area in around 450.
There were 14,769 employed people at Bregenz in 1991. The economy is mainly dominated by small businesses in the service, trade and industry sectors: these include textile industry (Wolford AG), iron-fittings manufacturer Julius Blum GmbH, glass processing and machine construction.
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