Museum History

The Museum of Industrial Clock Making was opened on 12 December 1994 in the former premises of the Württemberg Clock Factory Bürk & Söhne. It was the first factory in Schwenningen and the first clock factory in the former German state of Württemberg. While the museum is now located in the centre of the city of Schwenningen, the factory was built on the outskirts of Schwenningen, north of the district 'Ob dem Brückle'.
The old rural and the modern industrial Schwenningen meet here. It marked the beginning of Schwenningen's rapid transformation from a village of craftsmen and farmers to an industrial town.

  • 19th century
  • 1855

    Foundation of the Württemberg Clock Factory (Württembergische Uhrenfabrik)

  • 1858

    The company's first factory building is the present-day Bürk Villa

  • 1866

    A larger factory building is erected at the corner of today's Bertha-von-Suttner-Straße and Bürkstraße.

  • 1890s

    The buildings, which are now listed and house, among other things, the Museum of Industrial Clock Making, are built.

  • 20th century
  • 1900

    The large boiler house with steam engines, generators and chimney is built.

  • 1909

    The first factory and residential building becomes a representative factory owner's villa, today's Bürk Villa.

  • 1960s

    The construction activities are completed with the completion of a manufacturing hall in shed construction.

  • 1979

    The former Schwenningen museum director Dr. Reinartz obtains a municipal council resolution to establish an industrial museum.

  • 25.9.1984

    With the economic decline of the clock industry, which is so important for Schwenningen, the Württemberg Clock Factory Bürk & Söhne also has to file for bankruptcy.

  • Since 1985

    After the partial demolition of the factory, the building will be renovated and converted into residential and museum space.

  • 1988

    Resolution to establish a clock industry museum at the general meeting of the Schwenningen local history society

  • 1980s

    A group of committed citizens initiates and promotes the Clock Industry Museum project. The collection of documents, tools, machines and clocks is started in order to preserve the memory and knowledge of the location of the clock industry.

  • 2 May 1990

    Founding meeting of the association 'Förderkreis Lebendiges Uhrenindustriemuseum e.V.'.

  • 12 December 1994

    The Museum of Industrial Clock Making is opened.

  • 1999

    The museum will be expanded to include the rooms of the 'Türmlebau'. The possibility of temporary exhibitions is created.

  • 21st century
  • 2000

    In the area of the 'Türmlebau', a visitors' laboratory is being built to illustrate how a mechanical clock works.

  • 2003

    Luigi Micheletti Prize of the European Museum Forum for the best technical museum.

  • 2019

    The visitors' laboratory will be dismantled to expand the temporary exhibition space.