Schmitz-Horning Co. Letterhead 1907

September 23, 2019

By Janet Dodrill

Recently, I came across this ephemera paper item on eBay, a letter from The Schmitz-Horning Company (founded 1905) to a potential customer Danbury Fair, to accompany wall covering samples, typed on their letterhead, dated 1907. I was so happy to find this document because it contains historical information about the company that I did not know previously.

The Schmitz-Horning Co. letter to a potential customer on their letterhead, 1907

The Schmitz-Horning Co. letter to a potential customer on their letterhead, 1907.

The letter reads (copied as it appears):

May 8, 1907.

Secretary. Danbury Fair.

Danbury, Conn.

Dear Sir:

Per the request of Mr Frank Spellman we are sending you under separate cover sample of a three sheet for Knabenshues Air-ship. We have the same thing in a one sheet. This paper is copywrited under our own name and cannot be obtained from anyone else. The price of the three sheets is 6 cents per sheet, and on the one sheets it is 6 cents per sheet in lots up to 500 over that 5 cents per sheet. Hoping to have the pleasure of hearing favorably from you we are

Yours very truly.

The Schmitz-Horning Co.

Do you use any race paper? We have a complete line of the very latest.

The company administrators are listed at the top:

H.M. Schmitz, President

W.R. Cox, Vice President

Wm Horning, Treasurer

W.M. Cope, Secretary

The first three are also listed on Schmitz-Horning’s 1906 Frieze Patent.

Hugo Max Schmitz (my great-grandfather) and William Horning were co-founders of the Schmitz-Horning Company. Hugo was an artist and most likely met William, an artist and a lithographer, at Cleveland Art Club in the late 1890s. I found a Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper article on an Art Club exhibit where they both exhibited. Warren R. Cox, shown as Vice President, was a relative and became head salesman. William M. Cope, listed as Secretary on the letterhead, was also a relative, and this letter brings forth my first understanding that he had any involvement in the company.

In researching the three-sheet sample named in the letter, Knabenshues Air-ship, I came across these air vessels in a 1914 Schmitz-Horning Co. catalog in the Sporting Panels series that was manufactured both in one sheet and in three sheets, which may be that one.

Sporting Panel pattern depicting aircraft by Schmitz-Horning Co.

Sporting Panel pattern depicting aircraft by Schmitz-Horning Co., 1914 catalog.

Additionally, at the bottom of the letter it mentions race paper. Could this possibly be the racing automobiles pattern that I discovered in the same catalog and series?

Sporting Panel pattern showing competing automobiles of the time on a race track or country road by Schmitz-Horning Co.

Sporting Panel pattern showing competing automobiles of the time on a race track or country road by Schmitz-Horning Co., 1914 catalog.

The address on the letterhead is Whitney Building, Power and Muirson Streets, Cleveland. The building housed many companies including machinists, foundries and lithographers. Power Street or Avenue no longer exists today. The company was in its own building on E. 82nd street by 1912.

Whitney Building, E. 12th and Power Ave., Cleveland, 1963. (Cleveland Public Library Photograph Collection)

Whitney Building, E. 12th and Power Ave., Cleveland, 1963. (Cleveland Public Library Photograph Collection)

The Schmitz-Horning Co. label dated from a 1912 catalog, from its newer address on E. 82nd Street, Cleveland.

The Schmitz-Horning Co. label dated from a 1912 catalog, from its newer address on E. 82nd Street, Cleveland.

schmitz-horning-company-cleveland-ohio-plant-about-1925

The Schmitz-Horning Company building, Cleveland, Ohio, about 1925.

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Carl Fuchs Designed Schmitz-Horning Scenic Wall Pattern

May 23, 2019

By Janet Dodrill

Schmitz-Horning Company's Old South scenic panel detail (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Old South 1930s-1940s scenic panel detail (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Carl Fuchs designed the Old South scenic wall paper pattern (1930s-1940s) for the Schmitz-Horning Company of Cleveland, Ohio. The color lithograph (chromolithograph) inks and (washable) paper used were of the highest quality. Old South depicted plantation life in early America, and included a steamboat and fox hunt. There were twelve sections, each approximately 40″ x 80″ in repeat pattern.

The company was co-founded and run by my great-grandfather, Hugo M. Schmitz, and after his death in the late 1930s, run by my grandfather Warren R. Schmitz.

I am almost certain this 1920s Art Deco decorative pattern, Dekorative Vorbilder (Decorative Role Models), which I came across on an auction site, is by the same artist.

Dekorative Vorbilder by Carl Fuchs, 1920s Art Deco decorative pattern.

Dekorative Vorbilder by Carl Fuchs, 1920s Art Deco decorative pattern (Photo: Liveauctioneers.com).

Carl Fuchs was also hired by my grandparents to paint an oil portrait of my mother, then a girl of eight years.

Oil portrait of Schmitz-Horning president's daughter (my mother) by artist Carl Fuchs, 1939.

Oil portrait of Schmitz-Horning president’s daughter (my mother) by artist Carl Fuchs, 1939 (Photo: Schmitz family).

Resources:

Cooper Hewitt, Old South Scenic Panels
https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18431473/
https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18431471/
https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18431469/

Cooper Hewitt, Objects Involving The Schmitz-Horning Co.
https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/people/18046573/objects/

Riverview Estate Auctions, September 27, 2015 Auction, Lot 0008B
https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/41129637_1920s-art-deco-dekorative-vorbilder-print-carl-fuchs

Copyright article and images. All rights reserved. Not to be used without permission.

Schmitz-Horning Company's Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company's Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company's Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Old South scenic panel, 1 of 12 sections, each 40″ x 80″, repeat, designed by Carl Fuchs (Photo: Cooper Hewitt).


Schmitz-Horning Maytime Pattern No. 8015 Uncovered

January 12, 2019

By Janet Dodrill

A couple months ago I was contacted by email to help identify a Schmitz-Horning Co. frieze or wallpaper pattern. The only information available was the manufacturer name “Schmitz-Horning Co., Cleveland, Ohio, Made in U.S.A.,” the pattern name “Maytime,” and the pattern number “8015,” Section A and Section C. The person was renovating an old home and was curious to see what had been under the layers of wallpaper.

Home being renovated by new owners uncover under layers that wallpaper by Schmitz-Horning was used.

Home being renovated by new owners uncover under layers that wallpaper by Schmitz-Horning was used.

Schmitz-Horning Co., Cleveland, Ohio wall frieze border uncovered in home renovation.

Schmitz-Horning Co., Cleveland, Ohio wall frieze border uncovered in home renovation.

Maytime identified as old wallpaper pattern used in old home.

Maytime identified as old wallpaper pattern used in old home.

After some time searching the family archives, I was able to locate the pattern in Schmitz-Horning Company’s 1937 Kro-Mura™ Wall Decorations Catalog, pages 14 and 15. It was a beautiful fairy-like scenic color lithograph wall covering design, and send images of it to the contact. It is unclear when the pattern was initially produced.

It was rewarding to uncover some of the history of the old home and share in the discovery of this long lost wallpaper design.

Copyright article and images. All rights reserved. Not to be used without permission.

Maytime. This beautiful scenic paper reminds one of fairy-story illustrations. Its unusual charm lies largely in this fairy-lore interest, its dainty handling and refined coloring.

Maytime. This beautiful scenic paper reminds one of fairy-story illustrations. Its unusual charm lies largely in this fairy-lore interest, its dainty handling and refined coloring.

Maytime wall covering pattern by Schmitz-Horning Co. 1937 Kro-Mura catalog specification page.

Maytime wall covering pattern by Schmitz-Horning Co. 1937 Kro-Mura catalog specification page.

Maytime, No. 8015 – Green and pastel

Maytime, No. 8015 – Green and pastel, Maytime wall covering pattern by Schmitz-Horning Co. catalog specification page.

Maytime, Section A, B, C, D

Maytime, Section A, B, C, D, Maytime wall covering pattern by Schmitz-Horning Co. catalog specification page.


Karl Germain the Wizard Magic Posters Printed by Schmitz-Horning Co.

April 8, 2018

By Janet Dodrill

In 1908, Schmitz-Horning Company (est. 1905), a Cleveland, Ohio lithographic printing company, manufactured a series of large color lithographic advertising posters for professional magician Karl Germain. Additionally printed was a brochure.

Karl Germain (Charles Mattmuller), 1878-1959, was a native of Cleveland, and performed unique magic of his own creation in both America and England until his stage career ended prematurely in 1916 due to blindness.

These posters, and those of other magicians, have become highly collectible in ‘magicana’ collections (antiques and collectibles related to magic and magicians). Several international auction houses (and eBay) have offered these rare magic lithographs, and other wall murals by the Schmitz-Horning Company, for sale since around 2010.

Potter & Potter Auctions of Chicago, Illinois has auctioned dozens of Schmitz-Horning Co. Karl Germain magic posters.

Recently, one of the Karl Germain’s magic posters became available in Google Arts & Culture for the public to enjoy and learn about.

Schmitz-Horning was known for their early large scale capacity printing presses. At the time they owned two of three such custom-built presses in the world, and the 40″ x 80″-plus plates were shipped-in from Germany.

Resources:

Potter & Potter Auctions
Google Arts and Culture, American Museum of Magic

Copyright article and images. All rights reserved. Not to be used without permission.

Germain the Wizard Coming Events Cast Their Shadows Before Poster

Germain the Wizard Coming Events Cast Their Shadows Before, three-sheet, 1908, 41″ x 76 1/2″, 1908, (Photo: Potter & Potter Auctions)

Germain the Wizard Magic Poster

Germain the Wizard, 1908, 27 3/4″ x 42″, color lithograph (Photo: Potter & Potter Auctions)

Germain the Wizard Witch’s Cauldron Poster

Germain the Wizard, Witch’s Cauldron, 1908, 85″ x 44″, stone lithograph (Photo: Google Arts and Culture, American Museum of Magic)

Germain The Wizard

Germain the Wizard, Witch’s Cauldron Detail, 1908, Schmitz-Horning Co. lithograph (Photo: Google Arts and Culture, American Museum of Magic)

Germain The Man Who Mystified All Of London Poster

Germain, the Man who Mystified All of London, three-sheet, 1908, 76 1/2″ x 41″, color lithograph (Photo: Potter & Potter Auctions)

Germain the Master of Magic

The Master of Magic, Germain, 1908, 43″ x 28″, color lithograph (Photo: Potter & Potter Auctions)

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