Mercedes-Benz Classic: Gottlieb Daimler House in Schorndorf

Gottlieb Daimler was born in Schorndorf on 17 March 1834. The Daimler family, also called Deumler or Teimbler, had for two hundred years been living in Schorndorf which had some 4,000 inhabitants at the time Daimler was born.

The Daimlers had been master bakers for generations. Since 1787, at the latest, the Daimler bakery had been in number 7 “Höllgasse” or “Helle Gasse” (“light alley”). Gottlieb’s father Johannes Deumler took over the family business, which meanwhile included a wine parlour, in 1825. Johannes and his wife Wilhelmine Friederike née Fensterer, a dyer’s daughter, had four sons: Johannes (born 1832), Gottlieb Wilhelm (born 1834), Karl Wilhelm (born 1840) and Christian Albrecht (born 1845). A trader in bread and wine, Daimler’s father was not a rich man, but he nevertheless gave young Gottlieb a sound education, first at the local Latin school, then at the Royal trade school in Stuttgart. Gottlieb Daimler acquired manual skills as a gunsmith’s apprentice; his journeyman’s piece was a double-barrelled, elaborately decorated pistol.

Gottlieb Daimler left Schorndorf in 1853 to return only infrequently. He had attracted the attention of Ferdinand Steinbeis, promoter of industrialisation in Württemberg, who helped him find a job as an industrial worker in Graffenstaden near Strasbourg in preparation of his studies at a Polytechnic. The business in Höllgasse was run by his brothers Johannes and Karl Wilhelm. Financial difficulties forced Karl Wilhelm’s widow to sell the house in 1897.

In 1979, the house where one of the company’s founders had been born was acquired by Daimler-Benz AG. To restore the house to its original condition to the greatest possible extent, the brickwork had to be replaced, while the wooden structures and cellars could be retained. With the exception of minor changes at the back of the house, the latter reflects the original layout of the rooms. On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Gottlieb Daimler’s death on 6 March 2000, the exhibition on the ground floor was renewed.

Gottlieb Daimler’s notebook on his journey to Russia in 1881 reveals a sensitive observer and a man well versed in the arts. His extensive journeys and the limited transport opportunities prompted Daimler to develop a vision that was to change the world: “I detested the overcrowded trains in the summer and the limitations imposed by the railways, which made me think of independent driving.”

Gottlieb Wilhelm Daimler, 1834 to 1900

1834 - Born in Schorndorf on 17 March
1848-1852 - Apprenticeship with a gunsmith
1853-1857 - Practical mechanical engineering training in Graffenstaden in Alsace
1857-1859 - Mechanical engineering studies at the Stuttgart Polytechnic
1859 - Return to previous job in Graffenstaden
1861-1863 - Time spent in England; work at Messrs. Straub, a mechanical engineering company in Geislingen
End of 1863 - Technical manager of the mechanical engineering factory of the “Bruderhaus” (Reutlingen House of Brothers)
1867 - Wedding with Emma Kurtz
Dec. 1868 - Plant manager of Carlsruhe Mechanical Engineering Company
1872 - Technical manager of Deutz Gas Engine Factory
Sept. to Dec. 1881 - Journey to Russia on behalf of Deutz
1882 - Withdrawal from Deutz Gas Engine Factory, move to Cannstatt and start of work in the greenhouse on his estate
1883 - The first high-speed engine is operational
1885 - The second engine, nicknamed the “grandfather clock”, is granted German Imperial patent no. 34926 First outing with the “riding car”, the world’s first motorcycle
1887 - Engine production in a factory on Seelberg
1889 - Two-cylinder V-engine, wire-wheel car and four-speed gear-only transmission. Death of Emma Daimler
1890 - Foundation of Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG)
1890-1894 - Deputy Member of the supervisory board of DMG
1892 - Work with Wilhelm Maybach at the Hotel Hermann
1893 - Wedding with his second wife, Lina Hartmann
1894 - Withdrawal from DMG
1895 - Daimler re-joins DMG as chairman of the supervisory board
1900 - Gottlieb Daimler dies in Cannstatt on 8 March

Gottlieb Daimler House:
Höllgasse 7, 73614 Schorndorf (Germany)

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Friday from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, Sunday, Holidays from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.
Closed between Chistmas and New Year’s Day.
Free entrance.


Credits: Daimler AG

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