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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Artist Hugo Max Schmitz from Wisconsin Co-Founded Schmitz-Horning Co.

July 30, 2019
Hugo Max Schmitz, 1930.

Hugo Max Schmitz, 1930.

Hugo Max Schmitz (1867-1938), my great-grandfather, was an artist and co-founder of the Schmitz-Horning Company, a Cleveland wall covering manufacturer. After moving from Milwaukee, Wisconsin around the 1890s, he established himself in Cleveland’s Art Club (formerly know as The Bohemians) and exhibited in group shows. In one exhibit he showed with prominent artist and club president Archibald M. Willard, in addition to artist and lithographer, William (Bill) Horning, who would become his future business partner at Schmitz-Horning.

Hugo had six siblings, born in Wisconsin between 1852 and 1860: Victor, Willam, Edward, Florentine, Mary, and Charles Schmitz, born to father Peter Jospeh Schmitz and mother Mary (Leity).

One day I hope to learn more about his close family relatives and more about his art. We do know that a portrait that he painted of a young girl received an honorable mention in an exhibit at the New York Metropolitan Museum of art.

He married in 1902, to Pauline (“Queen”) Maynard Reynolds, daughter of Cleveland banker Iri Reynolds. They spent their honeymoon in Venice.

Hugo was acting president at Schmitz-Horning Co., est. 1905, and was one of the initial artists for the firm, designing high-end color lithographic wall mural and paper patterns. He ran the company until his death in 1938, and then his son, Warren Reynolds Schmitz took over, who was already working in sales at the company.

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Hugo Max Schmitz as a child.

Hugo Max Schmitz as a child.

Hugo Max Schmitz, age 9.

Hugo Max Schmitz, age 9.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early still life artwork.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early still life artwork.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early landscape artwork.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early landscape artwork.

The Schmitz family of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, late 1800s.

The Schmitz family of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, late 1800s.

Hugo Max Schmitz (center), Paris, 1890s.

Hugo Max Schmitz (center), Paris, 1890s.

Hugo Max Schmitz (right) with his signature pipe, Paris,1890s.

Hugo Max Schmitz (right) with his signature pipe, Paris,1890s.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early late 1800s or early 1900s.

Hugo Max Schmitz, early late 1800s or early 1900s.

Self-portrait by artist Hugo Max Schmitz, oil, 1898.

Self-portrait by artist Hugo Max Schmitz, oil, 1898.

Hugo Max Schmitz’s watercolor of Venice done on his honeymoon, 1902.

Hugo Max Schmitz’s watercolor of Venice done on his honeymoon, 1902.

Hugo Max Schmitz’s watercolor of Venice became a wall mural pattern for Schmitz-Horning Co., early 1900s.

Hugo Max Schmitz’s watercolor of Venice became a wall mural pattern for Schmitz-Horning Co., early 1900s.

Original Wall Mural Design Panels for Schmitz-Horning-Company, Floral Garden by Hugo Max Schmitz, oil, early 1900s.

Original Wall Mural Design Panels for Schmitz-Horning-Company, Floral Garden by Hugo Max Schmitz, oil, early 1900s.

Portrait by artist Hugo Max Schmitz of his wife, watercolor, 1903.

Portrait by artist Hugo Max Schmitz of his wife, watercolor, 1903.

Watercolor portrait of young girl by artist Hugo Max Schmitz.

Watercolor portrait of young girl by artist Hugo Max Schmitz.

Portrait of young lady by artist Hugo Max Schmitz, oil.

Portrait of young lady by artist Hugo Max Schmitz, oil.


The Schmitz-Horning Co. Featured in Architect Magazine

June 23, 2019

By Janet Dodrill

Architect Magazine published an article online June 6, 2019, titled Wallpaper Motifs of the 20th Century. In the article, the Building Technology Heritage Library (BTHL) highlights 11 pioneers in the evolution of 20th century wallpaper styles and motifs.

Online viewable catalogs are embedded in the article. A scanned original Schmitz-Horning Co. 1920 San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations full catalog is included, showing printed wallpaper panels and murals with themes including medieval tapestries, modern tiles, and floral motifs, and more.

It is evident that the diversity and skill of Cleveland’s Schmitz-Horning’s staff artists helped the company to create a beautiful variety of murals and scenic designs produced onto high quality washable and affordable chromolithographs.

Links:

Architect Magazine, Wallpaper Motifs of the 20th Century, June 6, 2019
https://www.architectmagazine.com/practice/wallpaper-motifs-of-the-20th-century_o

Schmitz-Horning Co 1920 San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog
https://archive.org/details/San-kro-muraWallDecorations

 

 

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Chinese Embroidery wall mural pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Chinese Embroidery wall mural pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Chinese Floral wall decoration pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Company’s Chinese Floral wall decoration pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Company’s The Nymph wall mural pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Company’s The Nymph wall mural pattern from the San-Kro-Mura Wall Decorations catalog.

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Paul Meunier, Artist – Yesterday’s New Discoveries

February 28, 2019

By Janet Dodrill

Paul A. Meunier was a Cleveland area artist who enjoyed painted nature and wildlife. He worked on staff as an artist at Schmitz-Horning Company, a wallpaper manufacturing firm, in the 1920s and 1930s. Of interest to me because of my family ties to the company, I published a list o known artists that were employed there.

A couple people contacted me regarding their Paul Meunier artwork.

One had six etched acrylic or plastic panels, two of which have a date (1970) and the artist’s name, acquired locally in Cleveland. (They are available for purchase through my source.)

The other individual purchased a map that Paul Meunier’s created of his family vacation travels from Ohio through parts of the western U.S. (1939). The contact wrote me stated that the lithograph was purchased at a Bay area market.

It’s interesting to see the broad range of work and depth of this artist, and even more interesting to speak to others who have his art work.

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Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3x4 to 5x7 inches.

Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3×4 to 5×7 inches.

Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3x4 to 5x7 inches.

Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3×4 to 5×7 inches.

Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3x4 to 5x7 inches.

Etched or engraved plastic art panels by Paul Meunier, 1970, owned by Charlie Grenier. Panel size is approximately 3×4 to 5×7 inches.

Name and 1970 date on art panels by Paul Meunier.

Name and 1970 date on art panels by Paul Meunier.

Map created by Paul Meunier of his family trip across the country, owned by Peter Bartels.

Map created by Paul Meunier of his family trip across the country, owned by Peter Bartels.


Old House Journal article includes Schmitz-Horning Co.

May 26, 2018

By Janet Dodrill

Old House Journal, May 2018, cover.

Old House Journal, May 2018, cover.

Schmitz-Horning Company was included in an article on scenic wallpapers in established old house restoration magazine, Old House Journal magazine, May 2018 issue.

The tasteful article, by Brian E. Coleman, displays a variety of high end wall coverings including hand painted paper.

Schmitz-Horning’s San-kro-mura™ line is mentioned, which stood for sanitary or washable, color, chromolithograph mural. Images of the Villa Medici wallpaper pattern and 1917 catalog page for The Lombardy appear.

The Schmitz-Horning Company patented the printed frieze for walls in 1906 (https://patents.google.com/patent/US830931).

 

Resources:

Old House Journal magazine
www.oldhouseonline.com

Old House Journal, Scenic Wallpapers, May 2018
www.oldhouseonline.com/articles/scenic-walls

Printed Frieze for Walls
patents.google.com/patent/US830931

 

Old House Journal magazine, May 2018 issue, scenic wallpapers article, page 29.

Old House Journal magazine, May 2018 issue, scenic wallpapers article, page 29.

 

Printed frieze for walls patented by Schmitz-Horning Co.

Printed frieze for walls patented by Schmitz-Horning Co.

 

Schmitz-Horning's The Lombardy wallpaper pattern, from the 1917 catalog.

Schmitz-Horning Co. The Lombardy wallpaper pattern, from the 1917 catalog.

 

Schmitz-Horning's Villa Medici scenic mural, San-Kro-Mura line.

Schmitz-Horning’s Villa Medici scenic mural, San-Kro-Mura line.

 

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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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William Horning, Schmitz-Horning Co., Artist and Lithographer

December 22, 2017

By Janet Dodrill

William Horning, Floral Still Life, oil on canvas, 27" x 33"

William Horning, Floral Still Life, oil on canvas, 27″ x 33″

William Horning, was a partner of the Schmitz-Horning Company, a lithographic wall covering and mural manufacturing firm in Cleveland, Ohio founded around 1905.

His name appeared on a 1906 patent for a printed repeat pattern wall frieze (US 830931 A), along with that of Hugo Max Schmitz I (my great-grandfather), and Warren R. Cox (family friend and head salesman).

William (Bill) Horning was a Cleveland area artist and lithographer, in addition to Hugo.

He sold his interest in Schmitz-Horning around 1920, but continued to work in the printing industry in the Cleveland area.

He was referred to as a landscape, marine, and animal painter of Cleveland (Cuyahoga area), and exhibited with the Cleveland Art Club and the Water Color Society of Cleveland starting in 1894. He led and evening sketch class at the Cleveland Art Club in 1895. That is around the time that my great grandfather Hugo M. Schmitz, who moved to Cleveland from Wisconsin, attended the group. They may have met there before starting Schmitz-Horning Co. not long thereafter.

In 1930 he participated in an exhibition of water colors by members of the Cleveland Society of Artists, a group who held member exhibits semi-annually. Carl Broemel, who created art for many murals for Schmitz-Horning, also had paintings in the exhibit, and incidentally was hired by my grandparents to paint an oil portrait of my mother as a young girl.

The floral oil painting by William Horning shown sold from the Baldwin-Wallace College collection at Rachel Davis Fine Arts auction in 2009.

 

Sources:

Cleveland Plain Dealer, Sunday, January 26, 1930

Artists in Ohio, 1787-1900: A Biographical Dictionary, by Jeffrey Weidman, compiled & edited by Mary Sayre Haverstock, Jeannette Mahoney Vance, & Brian L. Meggitt, © 2000, Kent State University Press

Rachel Davis Fine Arts

Liveauctioneers.com

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Photo: Rachel Davis Fine Arts

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