Banská Bystrica - mining town in central Slovakia. A Lusation settlement and findings from the Roman period testify to the town´s early habitation. Originally a Slav settlement, it was destroyed in a Tatar onslaught and later settled by Germans. In 1255 Bela IV granted the town privileges and it was incorporated. Its main source of wealth was the extraction of copper and copper-silver ores. At the turn of the 15th and 16th centuries the Thurzo-Fugger company, dealing in the copper trade, operated in all the European markets and overseas and was probably the largest of its kind in the world.
According to documents of the time, it was in Neusohl by the river Hron - that is, Banská Bystrica - that the postal service began its operations on July 10th, 1644, a fact which reflects the town´s standing.
In more recent history Banská Bystrica is famous as the centre of the Slovak National Uprising and the base of the Free Slovak Broadcasting