An exciting journey through time" - Oscar Schlegelmilch porcelain


Oscar Schlegelmilch was born in Suhl as the son of porcelain manufacturer Leonhard Schlegelmilch


Oscar Schlegelmilch buys several properties on Oberweg Langewiesen, which were used to build the porcelain factory.


  • Entry of the Oscar Schlegelmilch porcelain factory in the commercial register at the princely Schwarzburger district court Gehren
  • 1892 start of production with approx. 200 employees: production of decorative porcelain, knick-knacks, mocha cups


  • Businessman Theodor Conrad Hinrichs becomes an equal partner of O.S. factory
  • Conversion of O.S. Factory in a OHG


  • Enlargement of the factory on 4 rotary kilns
  • Established world-class reputation
  • Production of ornamental porcelain in on and underglaze painting
  • assortment extension (for example, large vases, Art Nouveau jugs)
  • Sales territories: North, South America, Nordic countries, Balkans
  • Number of employees: 300


highest turnover in the company history is achieved


  • Reduction in sales due to export decline
  • Reduction of the number of employees to 32


new portfolio element: high quality background and relief painting


Gerhard Luge becomes Technical Director


Schlegelmilch develops countless new patterns and about 1200 new decors


  • bad situation due to economic crisis
  • Mr. Hinrichs sells his shares in Hans Schlegelmilch (nephew of Oscar Schlegelmilch)

Summer 1936

Oscar Schlegelmilch retires as a cooperating shareholder from the business

October 1936

Hans Schlegelmilch sole shareholder (Mr. Luge becomes operator)

January 1937

  • Oscar Schlegelmilch and daughter Toni move to Cologne
  • Mr Luge becomes director
  • enormous increase in sales in Germany and abroad


Oscar Schlegelmilch dies in Cologne


Product range expansion through technical special items, advertising bowls, gift items assortment


  • renewed sales increase
  • Number of employees: 140


  • Extensive range of gift items is exported to Nordic countries, Balkans, Holland
  • Domestic production is stopped
  • host. Situation worsens
  • Number of employees: 30-50


  • Hans Schlegelmilch dies in Wesel
  • OHG is dissolved
  • The sole heir will be his wife Christel Schlegelmilch, who will continue to run the business


  • new porfolio element: finishing orders, accessories for irons
  • reparations payments to the Soviet Union


  • Operation was taken over due to a decree of the GDR (according to § 6 Vo 17.07.1952) in state administration, as owners lived in Germany
  • The administrator was Max Heyder from the VEB porcelain factory Gehren


  • Mr. Luge leaves the company and moves to Germany
  • State defines plan tasks: Household porcelain, coffee, tea, mocha service; Gift assortment is reduced; Delivery to 80% abroad
  • Number of employees: 225


Introduction of the 45-hour week


Transformation into Oscar Schlegelmilch KG (56% state participation, administrator becomes Deutsche Investitionsbank Berlin (DIB))


VEB porcelain factory "Graf von Henneberg" Ilmenau replaces DIB as a limited partner


  • State participation increases to 68%
  • Production of coffee and mocha service
  • 1/3 export, 1/3 government orders, 1/3 population
  • Plan tasks were realized 100%
  • Number of employees: 208


Director of the VEB porcelain factory Ilmenau submits application for liquidation of O.S. KG Porzellanfabrik Langewiesen (Reason: Workers were needed to safeguard labor capacity in the Ilmenau porcelain works)


  • Withdrawal of all private shareholders and payments of capital shares by the state
  • All basic funds and material in circulation will be transferred to public property and the VEB porcelain factory Ilmena
  • Affiliation to the VEB porcelain factory Ilmenau as work VII
  • partial takeover of 180 employees (40 employees stayed in Langewiesen)
  • Part of the factory in Langewiesen became apprenticeship (15 apprentices)


Closure of the business in Langewiesen


  • Small companies (eg VEB WTK Meißen, central spare parts supply) settled on the former porcelain factory premises
  • after the reunification, Treuhand Berlin became owner of the property

since 1990

  • Purchase of the property with the former porcelain factory by Mr. Arenz von der Treuhand Berlin
  • Foundation of the TSG Sondermaschinenbau Langewiesen (takeover of all employees of the "WTK" area of mechanical engineering)

about 1994

Decision to convert the old porcelain factory building into modern production halls

around 1998

  • Removal of the last two heavily damaged porcelain furnaces in building 17 (today's porcelain museum)
  • Find old porcelain molds and raw materials during the conversion - this was the beginning of the collection of O. Schlegelmilch porcelain by the Arenz family


Decision to build a porcelain museum and the CULTURE FACTORY


Foundation of the Helmut Arenz Kulturstiftung (date of recognition), which the O.S. Porcelain museum and the KULTURFABRIK; Foundation Board of Trustees: currently 11 members

June 2010

Opening of the porcelain museum O. Schlegelmilch in the KULTURFABRIK

Would you like further information about the Oscar Schlegelmilch porcelain?

In our brochure "Time Travel", available in the Oskar Schlegelmilch Porcelain Museum, you will find detailed essays on this subject.