Posted 1 month ago
I was recently contacted by a Czech historical group regarding my Welz research because they want to use information from my article on Welz in the WVMOG publication "All About Glass" from last year, as a basis for an article in an upcoming edition of their publication. In 2015 the group revived a bi-annual regional historical publication which had been issued from 1880 - 1943.
The edition will revolve around the 400th Anniversary of the 30 year war which occurred in the region from 1618 - 1648. The destruction of a church in 1617, whose remains are still in Hrob, is considered to be one of the contributing factors to the start of what should have been a small regional war. The war resulted in the deaths of 8 million people, which at the time was 10% of Europe's population. It is considered to be one of Europe's greatest conflicts, especially being religion based. To put that in perspective, the same level of destruction today would result in the killing of 75 million people in Europe, excluding the UK and Russia.
They are also very interested in covering the Welz family, and their glass production in Klostergrab. I am particularly pleased with this turn of events, as there is little local recognition in some regions for the glass families and their history. Families like the Welz family, and others were Jewish descendants of ethnic Germans, so in many cases not much was done to preserve the history. I am thrilled to be part of this history being published regionally, in close proximity to their historical location. .
The group asked me to provide some images for them, aside from a couple I had already provided which relate to a medallion above a doorway on a building owned by Franz Welz in Klostergrab (now Hrob). I thought I would share them here.
I am also excited about the turn of events, as this will afford me access to some information I could likely not gain access to from the US, as they are interested in helping me advance my historical research on the family as much as they are able. I have already been provided links to information I did not have previously.... Now to translate it all, as it is obviously not in English.
The 4th image above is one I was provided with previously by the group. In 1910 Welz won a Gold Medal at the Brussels World Exposition. I have images of the actual award from the Welz descendants I am in contact with. Until recently I had not been able to identify the exact type of work the award was for. At the time the company employed about 110 people, and were world class producers of cut crystal. They produced crystal vases as tall as 1.5 meters, and were awarded the Gold Medal in that class of glass. This is a page from a publication covering that award, and some brief company history.
This is a translation of the article. This was printed in 1911 in a Teplitz Regional paper.
The Franz Welz Antonienhütte Glassworks in Klostergrab
The glassworks were founded by the Welz family in 1792 in Dobrá Voda near Svetlá nad Sázavou.
The family bought a glass factory, which was built in 1725. As a result of the high prices of wood and wood transportation, (used as fuel for production of glass) Mr. Alois Welz (the grandfather of Joseph and Franz Welz) moved the company to property in Klostergrab – Verne?ice. There, the Anna - Emilie brown coal mine and a larger mill are bought. In 1864 he built a new glass mill on the site of the former mill. In Dobrá Voda, glass production was partially maintained until 1871, then it was abandoned.
The Glassworks in the Hrob produced blanks for the refineries of Nový Bor (Haida) and Kamenický Šenov (Steinschönau). The belief at the Haida refinery that it is not possible to produce quality enamel from Czech brown coal have been overcome. With great efforts and sacrifices, as well as with the introduction of gas furnaces, we managed to achieve a perfect result.
In 1873 Alois Welz's factory went to Franz Welz. Under the direction of Franz Welz, the glassworks gradually introduced the production of cut glass (according to the English model), which has gained fame, not only in the Czech Republic, but also around the world. It has become an example for other hollow glass workshops.
In 1909 the glassworks passed to Joseph and Franz Alois Welz. At that time she had 110 employees. There are many glassworkers who work in the glassworks for the third or fourth generation.
The glassworks produce crystal vases of up to 1.5 meters and cut Baroque glass.
In 1910 he won a gold medal at the World Exhibition in Brussels.
Most unfortunately, with no known literature about this type of Welz production to aid in identification, we may never know what any of this production was. I find that to be most sad, as they won a Gold Medal for it....