Station: [23] Adolf Friedrich Bader

Wunderlich, who built the mansion, lived during the period affected by the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. Adolf Friedrich Bader, on the other hand, represents Germany’s Bourgeois Revolution and the beginnings of industrialisation.

Bader wasn’t Wunderlich’s immediate successor. He bought the mansion in 1847 from the widow of Lucas Faesch, who, like Wunderlich, had been in trade and used the property in the same way as his predecessor. Bader, who’d been born in the spa town of Baden-Baden on the 19th of July 1808, was a factory owner. And with him as the new proprietor, industrial production moved into the mansion. Bader was in the tobacco business and had good instincts. Unlike the Lotzbeck family of tobacco magnates, who continued to produce snuff, chewing tobacco and pipes, Bader realised that the future of tobacco consumption was in cigars!

In around 1840, he founded the first cigar factory in Lahr and indeed in Upper Baden. In 1847, he purchased this building and set up his manufacturing facilities here. He extended the east and west wings, built warehouses in what is now the garden and erected the house that stands at right angles to the rest of the mansion (and is now no longer part of the property). So there were five factory buildings in total!

... In which some 200 workers were employed. Bader promoted tobacco-growing in the local Ried, the fertile wetlands in the Rhine Valley. At the same time, he imported tobacco from overseas and exported his finished products throughout the world. He even received awards for his products at the World's Fair in Paris.

In September of 1887, Bader and his wife celebrated their golden wedding anniversary. He was a genuine figure of respect in the town. Grand Duke Friedrich of Baden, for his part, responded in style: he awarded Adolf Friedrich Bader the Knight's Cross First Class of the Order of the Zähringen Lion.

Eighteen months later, death came calling. Bader's wife Amalie Luise died on the afternoon of the 16th of February 1889. Her husband died just a few hours later, early in the morning of the 17th. Take a look at your screen to see the obituary notice the family placed in the newspaper. It translates as:

"With profound sorrow, we wish to advise our relatives and friends that our beloved father, grandfather and great-grandfather, Adolf Friedrich Bader, died peacefully a few hours after the passing of his cherished wife. He was 81.”

The following year, in 1890, Bader's property was sold to Master Baker Jakob Bucherer. He, in turn, sold it on to the Fehr-Huber family of wine merchants in 1918. Only the two buildings on the south side were inherited by one of Bader's sons, who set up another cigar factory run by the firm of Stalling & Bader. But cigars would soon be outcompeted by cigarettes, so the business was short-lived.

All depictions: © Palais Wunderlich