Brück & Son

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Brück & Son

legal form eK
founding 1793
resolution 2019
Seat Meissen
management Annette and Helmut Brück
Number of employees 14 (as of November 23, 2006)
Branch Art publisher , postcard publisher , specialist shop

Brück & Sohn was a German art publisher founded in 1793 in Meißen , Saxony . It was one of the world's oldest picture postcard publishers and has been in the family for seven generations. Business operations ceased in 2019.


Carl Friedrich August Brück (1769–1833) , a bookbinder from Freiberg , founded his own company on October 8th, 1793 after passing his master's degree and joining the Meissen bookbinding guild. Since the work as a bookbinder was not enough, Brück dealt more with the trade of paper goods, calendars, pictures and fonts. From 1801 he was also active as a publisher and published small occasional publications of regional importance. In 1819, Brück received a publishing license from the Royal Saxon state government for his “Königlich Licensed Historical-Statistical Agriculture and Folk Calendar”, which is published annually . The range at that time also included Christian literature and fairy tale books . The bookbinding workshop and the publishing house were already located in what is now the Brück & Sohn company. Thanks to the financial success, CFA Brück was able to buy the house in 1822. He acquired Meissen citizenship in 1793 and married Johanna Bähnisch. The marriage has six children.

Karl August Brück (1797–1877), called Friedrich August Brück, decided like his father to become a bookbinder. In 1818 he joined his father's company. KA Bück acquired the master's license in 1819 and became a citizen of the city of Meissen. He expanded the company's product range considerably and operated it as a "paper, bookbinding & gallantry goods dealership". Around Christmas time, much-noticed "Christmas exhibitions" took place in the business premises. Karl August Brück was socially involved in his city and, as a representative of the traders and traders, was elected third councilor of the city of Meissen from 1834 to 1838 and 1847 to 1850 and then as a paid councilor for life. His marriage to Johanna Kahle in 1820 has three children.

Places with the most common motifs
on Brück & Sohn postcards
(as of October 27, 2007)
place country Motifs
Meissen Germany 2973
Carlsbad Czech Republic 1206
Dresden Germany 1149
Upper Bear Castle Germany 856
Bad Elster Germany 816
Radebeul Germany 529
Budapest Hungary 500
Freiberg Germany 473
Bautzen Germany 410
Kamenz Germany 362
Danzig Poland 358
Grossenhain Germany 351

Otto Julius Brück (1825–1905) also learned the bookbinding trade. In 1848 he joined the publishing house, which has since operated under the name Brück & Sohn. Thanks to the invention of photography, postcards conquered the world market. In 1885, OJ Brück was one of the first publishers in the world to begin producing the new types of postcards. A Meißner motif was printed on the first card. OJ Brück had been married since 1848 and had three children.

On the company's centenary in 1893, Oscar Julius Brück (1855–1920) took over the publishing house together with his brother Franz Richard Brück (1858–1909). For the first time neither were bookbinders, but had completed a commercial training. The bookbinding workshop was converted into a shop with two large shop windows. The house was given a stylish appearance with an artful sandstone facade. From 1897 Brück & Sohn exported the cards to other European countries, North America and Southeast Asia. A postcard archive has also been maintained since 1897.

In 1920, Wilhelm Helmut Brück (1896–1961), son of Oscar Julius Brück, took over the position of managing director in the fifth generation. Together with his brother Rudolf, he mainly continued the postcard business successfully. During the difficult times of the First World War , inflation and the global economic crisis , Brück & Sohn was expanded to include a wholesale business for stationery. Between 1920 and 1930, WH Brück published an average of 400 new card motifs per year. Shortly before the end of the Second World War , Rudolf Brück fell. Since Meissen had not suffered any war damage, the rebuilding of the business could begin in 1947.

Wilhelm Walter's son, Dietmar Ernst Albrecht Brück (1927–1997), like his ancestors, had completed training as a businessman and publisher. From 1951 he was initially a partner and later owner of Brück & Sohn. After the war he resumed the postcard business and added greeting cards and genre postcards. In 1963 the company exhibited for the first time at the Leipzig sample fair . From this export business developed to North Vietnam and Denmark, among others. The friendly business relationship with the English company Celloware was established. From 1964 onwards, art prints were sold in exchange for foreign currency . Processed into trays, these were delivered to 42 countries around the world. This cooperation saved the family company from expropriation during the GDR in 1971 . In 1971 there was a short-term close collaboration with the Görtz photo house in Bad Frankenhausen , which resulted in several Görtz cards (including the Kulpenberg / Kyffh. TV tower, Moritzburg Castle Museum and Kyffhäuser) being published by Brück & Sohn. In the same year, the central GDR postcard publisher, VEB Bild und Heimat Reichenbach i. V., to a joint publication of the postcards on the basis of a standardized numbering system. This cooperation with the aim of nationalizing the private company did not get beyond the first beginnings in 1971. As early as 1972 Brück & Sohn continued to issue its cards with their own numbers. The limited paper and printing capacities remained problematic in times of the planned economy.

In the seventh generation, a woman took over the management of the company for the first time: Maria Annette Brück, born in 1956. The trained printing form maker and photographer has been the owner of Brück & Sohn since 1987. She is supported by her husband Helmut Donath (since 1994 Helmut Brück). At the turn of 1989, business relations with England were discontinued, and the focus of sales was now on reunified Germany. Helmut took over the management of the company. The store was enlarged from 60 to 220 square meters over two floors. The reopening took place in 1992. Between 1994 and 2012, the publishing house was also located in the Meißner district of Buschbad ( Lage ). From 1998 a new focus was added to the publishing program: Advent calendars with historical city views, which are also designed by Meissen porcelain painters. In 2017, the owner Annette Brück announced that she wanted to sell the publisher. However, by January 2019 she did not find a buyer who wanted to continue the publishing house in her favor. Thus, after 226 years, the publisher's work was stopped on March 31, 2019.


After the numbering from 1897, a picture of the Albrechtsburg castle 110 years later was published in 2007 as a picture postcard with the number 33.333 . 99 percent of misplaced postcards are in the archive today. During this period, the art publisher Brück & Sohn displayed more than 1,300 locations from 17 countries on one postcard. In addition to classic views of towns and landscapes in garrison towns, military representations were also offered. These photos, some of which have been retouched, have now acquired documentary value for the historical sciences. Some postcard motifs that had changed little or hardly over time were reissued almost 50 years later.

The German photo library in 2005 bought at around 20,000 glass plates and film from the negative component of the picture postcard publisher.

In 2016 Brück & Sohn made the majority of its archive of historical postcards (over 30,000 images, 17.4 GB of data) from the period 1897 to 1989 available to the Wikipedia media database Wikimedia Commons .

Brück & Sohn in Meißner Burgstrasse


The four-storey commercial building at Burgstrasse 1, located in Meißner's old town on the market behind the town hall , was built as a residential building in the Baroque style. It was acquired by Karl August Brück in 1822 for 8,500 thalers. A shop has been located on the ground floor since a renovation in 1893, which was expanded to two floors during the next renovation in 1991/92. In 2014 the second floor of the store was dismantled and the store rented out. The building is a historical monument.

Web links

Commons : Brück & Sohn  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b Josephine Kotsch: Meißen - Traditional Shops: Where there's a name, there's a way . In: Saxon newspaper . DD + V, Dresden November 23, 2006 ( online and online for SZ subscribers [accessed on February 11, 2013]).
  2. ^ A b Petra-Alexandra Buhl: Meißen - trade: From the economic luck of the Brücks . In: Saxon newspaper . DD + V, Dresden August 29, 2003 ( online and online for SZ subscribers [accessed on February 11, 2013]).
  3. a b c d e f Brück and Son - company history. In: Brück & Sohn, accessed on October 21, 2016 .
  4. a b c d Andreas Mierswa and Eberhard Müller: Shops with history - traditional retail companies in East Saxony . Ed .: Handelsverband Sachsen . Leipziger Messe Verlag, 2003, ISBN 3-9808117-5-1 , p. 150 f .
  5. a b c d Jörg Ludwig: "Greetings from Meißen" - The postcard archive of the Brück & Sohn company . In: Sächsisches Staatsarchiv (Hrsg.): Sächsisches Archivblatt . No. 2 . Dresden 2009, p. 20 f . ( Archivblatt_2-2009 [PDF; 1,2 MB ; accessed on February 11, 2013]).
  6. Brück & Sohn (ed.): List of postcards from the art publisher Brück & Sohn . October 27, 2007 ( list of places [PDF; 72 kB ; accessed on February 11, 2016]).
  7. a b c Brück & Sohn (ed.): Since 1885 33,333 picture postcards from the art publisher . April 13, 2007 ( Flyer ( Memento from July 4, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) [PDF; 354 kB ; accessed on February 11, 2013]).
  8. Ulf Mallek: The last owner . In: Saxon newspaper . April 24, 2017 ( online [accessed January 8, 2019]).
  9. Udo Lemke: Out for "Brück & Sohn" . In: Saxon newspaper . January 3, 2019 ( online [accessed January 8, 2019]).
  10. Brück and Son - Archive. (PDF) In: Brück & Sohn, archived from the original on July 4, 2012 ; Retrieved February 11, 2013 .
  11. Peter Anderson: Meißen - Brück & Son celebrates the postcard . In: Saxon newspaper . DD + V, Dresden May 3, 2007 ( online for SZ subscribers [accessed on February 11, 2013]).
  12. ^ Annual report 2005 - Saxon State Library - State and University Library Dresden . In: SLUB Dresden (Ed.): SLUB-Kurier . Special issue. Dresden 2006, inventory build-up - Deutsche Fotothek, p. 13 ( gbericht_05 [PDF; 1,2 MB ; accessed on February 11, 2013]). gbericht_05 ( Memento of the original from September 24, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  13. Peter Anderson: Brücks illustrate the Internet . In: Saxon newspaper . February 10, 2017 ( online [accessed November 24, 2019]).
  14. a b City project Meißen / Architects' office Langer: Urban development framework plan for the historic old town of Meißen, new version 2008/2009 - Appendix 2 as-built maps and plans: Plan 08 analysis of building age, Plan 09 analysis of monument protection . Ed .: City of Meißen . Meissen November 3, 2008, p. 8 f . ( Plan_Analyse_DINA4 [PDF; 6.5 MB ; accessed on February 11, 2013]).

Coordinates: 51 ° 9 ′ 48.2 ″  N , 13 ° 28 ′ 12 ″  E