Station: [27] Industries in Radeberg

If you don’t see it here, it didn’t exist! The range of Radeberg-based industries and operations was vast. From furniture to sequins, cheese, glass lamps, all the way to false teeth. Over time, there was hardly anything that wasn’t produced in Radeberg, often by small family businesses, Germany’s frequently invoked “Mittelstand”.

To find out about some of these firms, please fold back the orange panels. On the back, you’ll find a brief history of the firm in question. The display cases contain the associated products.

For example, there’s Carl Barth’s business, which made bobbin holders for sewing machines. Barth was originally an employee of the Singer sewing machine factory. But when he won the lottery, he set up his own business and became a supplier in 1869. Today, 150 years later, the firm still exists, though it’s been restructured several times. It’s now called CB-ELMEC and specialises in surface finishing and powder coatings. 

In the next display case, you see the enamel goods produced by what later became the Eschebach kitchen furniture factory. They include jugs, pots, sieves – and a little white bathtub that is linked to a very special story. In December 1943, a lot of the men on the workforce had been called up to serve in the war. The plant invited their families to a Christmas party, and gave presents to all the children. The girls received a stove for their doll’s house, and the boys were given a bathtub. One of those little boys kept his bathtub for as long as he lived and presented it to the museum as a very old man.

In the display cases in the next section, on the right of the archway, you can find out how Camembert cheese was first introduced into Germany, what was on board the first chilled freight wagons when they pulled out of Radeberg, and who manufactured the bodies for the luxury limousines “made in East Germany”.

And did you realise that all the false teeth available in former East Germany were made in Radeberg? The proof is right there, on the far right. Shortly after the First World War, the “Hutschenreuth Tooth Factory Saxonia“ was established in Radeberg. There was huge demand for dentures and false teeth of all kinds, and people with the necessary specialist skills were already available in Radeberg: engravers from the glass industry. They made moulds that were accurate to the millimetre and could then be used to cast the porcelain teeth.

All depictions: © Stadt- und Fachwerkmuseum Eppingen