Pattern cabinet with pipes, 1860

Alsfeld smokes!Foundation of the Ludwig Raab pipe factory

Only the founding year 1868 is known about the origins of this company. Johann Ludwig Raab was not a native of Alsfeld. Born in Utphe (Hungen) in 1830, he probably came to Alsfeld in the 1850s. The pipe factory August Ernst Waldeck, whose ancestors had also immigrated, had already existed here since 1837. It can be assumed that Raab first learned and worked at Waldeck before setting up his own business. It was not until 1873 that he was admitted as a citizen of Alsfeld with the professional title of “horn turner”.

The business develops well. In 1878 he employs “4 assistants” in his “turning store in horn and wood with store”. In 1896, according to the trade diary, there are already 11-20 employees. In this year – the founder had already died in 1894 – son Ludwig acquires the mill site on Altenburger Straße and builds new production buildings.

In the first half of the 20th century, market conditions deteriorate drastically. Despite several changes in production, the 4th generation of founders no longer sees any future prospects. In 1991, the Ludwig Raab company is deleted from the commercial register.

Only the “Villa Raab” on Altenburger Strasse, built in 1904 in the Art Nouveau style, still reminds of the once flourishing company. NH