Station: [25] Eschebach Kitchenette

It can’t get more nostalgic than this. What looks like great-grandma’s kitchen dresser was ground-breaking and state of the art in its day.

In the late 1920s, the good old sideboard was replaced by a modern kitchen made by the firm of Eschebach, and the first step towards a built-in kitchen had been taken. If you look closely, you’ll see that the kitchenette consists of standardised individual cupboards arranged side by side. Each housewife could select the elements she required, had the space for and could afford.

The small case in the foreground shows the planning process. The kitchen rep. used a simple, modular system to assemble the new kitchen for the lady of the house.

Carl Eschebach had started very small. He made enamelled kitchenware in the back room of his wife’s hardware shop. His company quickly expanded, and in 1886, he opened a state-of-the-art factory right by the station, called “Radeberger Guss-und Emaillierwerke Carl Eschebach & Co” – Radeberg Casting and Enamelling Works Carl Eschebach & Co. By the turn of the century, it was employing more than a thousand people. Eschebach was a self-made man, and an entrepreneur in the old style. He set up canteens, bathrooms and shower rooms in his factory, supported his workers’ families in emergencies, and provided housing for his workforce. The estate on Bahnhofstrasse, right behind the old factory, still exists today and was freshly refurbished a few years ago.

The story of Eschebach’s success is typical of Radeberg in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Located not far from Dresden, the town developed into an up-and-coming industrial centre in the decades after the founding of the German Reich. If you take a look at the illuminated wall to the right of the kitchenette, you can get an idea of the wide range of industries located in Radeberg: from the food industry via glass and paper making, the wood-processing industry, all the way to metalworking and precision engineering – there’s hardly a sector that wasn’t represented in Radeberg.

All depictions: © Stadt- und Fachwerkmuseum Eppingen