Station: [19] The Parlour

F: The parlour exhibit is one of the highlights here at the Lette Museum of Local History. It’s hard to know where to look first: up at the ceiling or down at the tiled floor. But ... let's start at the top. 

M: The impressive coffered ceiling came from what used to be House Number 5 here in Lette. Around 150 years ago, it was home to the shoemaker Wilhelm Pieck and his wife Franziska, who was the daughter of a master carpenter. Her father made this wooden ceiling as a wedding present. The dresser along one wall and the panelling followed a few years later. In 2003, the local history society was able to secure the wooden ceiling and move it to the museum. The wood was painstakingly restored and the gilding professionally renewed.

F: The floor tiles aren’t from House Number 5, but from a building on Mühlenstrasse in Coesfeld. They were made by the firm of Villeroy und Boch – but they’re not just any old tiles. They’re the famous Mettlach tiles, named after the village of Mettlach in the Saarland, where they were made.

M: In the mid-19th century, a Roman mosaic floor was discovered in Mettlach. The restoration was entrusted to none other than the entrepreneur Eugen von Boch. Inspired by the archaeological find, Boch and his technicians began researching materials from which to make tiles. That led to the development of the Mettlach tiles. They’re unusual because they’re hand-made and have an inlaid pattern, parts of which are very intricate.

F: Villeroy and Boch made Mettlach tiles world-famous. Demand was so great that in 1869, the company built a factory specialising in tiles. It became known as the "Mosaikfabrik" – the mosaic factory.

Fotos: © Heimatmuseum Lette