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Johann Hückel´s Söhne - Hückel Hutfabrik Weilheim

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J. Hückel ´s Söhne "Alpha" "Seal Velour", French Point Size 5, Brim 2 1/4 inches, Crown Open 6 inches possibly mid 1930s. The gray "Alpha" "Seal Velour" is fantastic and easily dry creases.  Really like the contrasting blue Zig-Zag stitching on the silk liner.  Looks much better in natural light.








Open Crown



Natural Light 




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My friend that is the senior portrait engraver at the U.S. BPG printed these on an Intaglio press (the stamp was for Letter press) yesterday so really nice.  They are for the JHS Tonak 220 Year Anniversary celebration September 6th and 7th in Novy Jicin, Czech Republic.  I will be flying out this evening.  If you click on the photo it might enlarge.


Here is the stamp we used which is early 1900s prior to WWI.


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I received the following gifts from Tonak when I visited the factory for the Tonak / JHS 220 Years celebration (September 6, 2019).

Tonak 1799 Bag with photo of J. Hückel ´s Söhne Employees from early 1900s. (Clicking on photos might enlarge.)



Tonak 220 Years Miniature Fur Felt Hat.




Tonak Hat Pin.


Tonak Miniature Hat Brush with Bag.


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Legend TONAK: The oldest millinery in the world is 220 years old!



Nový Jičín made an indelible history as a "city of hats". Its hatter's history was written by Prokop Hatter, mentioned in the archival sources from 1506. Later, in 1630, a separate hatter's guild came into being here. from Würtzburg, Bavaria, which first settled in Fulnek in 1638 and operated a hat shop for 160 years.In 1799 Johann Nepomuk Hückel became a hat maker in Nový Jičín and laid the foundations of the oldest factory of its kind in the world.

Deed of acceptance of Johann Nepomuk Hückel into the hatter's guild. Photo: State District Archives

With steam to the top Johann Nepomuk Hückel ran his trade at first at the then Courierring (today's General Hlaď Street) in house number 749. Later in 1811 his brother Augustin (1786-1848) came to the town and joined into the local hat production. Both brothers had adjacent workshops at the Lower Gate number 16 and 18, which in 1848 Augustine's son Johann (1814-1880) merged into one production complex. After the return of his sons from hat making studies abroad, in 1865 he mechanized the production of a 3 horsepower steam engine. His workshop was the first mechanized millinery in the then Austria. The contribution of new technologies to production immediately increased demand. Therefore, in 1867 it was decided to purchase land on the southern side of the city and build a modern hat factory. Soon after the construction of the new factory, Johann Hückel employed 300 workers. In 1868, the company was newly registered as a trading company J. Hückel's Sohne. At the same time the brothers Augustin (1848-1917) and Johann (1843-1917) Hückel used all possibilities and means to develop the whole enterprise a few years later, in 1874, their factory became the largest in the city, and the next year their youngest brother Karl (1850-1919) joined as a partner. and Hückel's extensive production was awarded at many world exhibitions at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Drawing by Johann Hückel at Lower Gate. Photo: State District Archive Nový Jičín

View of the factory Johann Hückel's Reaches from 1895. Photo: Museum of Novojidín

Tradition continues

Only the First World War halted further development of the millinery production. After its end, in addition to the Viennese branch, plants were also established in Racibórz, Germany and Skočov, Poland. During the boom before the next world war, the company employed about 3,000 workers, masters and clerks. Nearly 1,000 different machines were driven by four steam boilers and a turbine with almost three wagons of coal a day. During World War II the company gradually switched to arms production. In 1941, Hückel's factory purchased the former Brüder Böhm factory from the German state. Like many other Nový Jičín families, the Hückels left for Germany and Austria at the end of the war. Subsequent nationalization and merger of all then Czechoslovak hatter's factories gave rise to the firm TONAK, a national enterprise. Today's TONAK joint stock company continues in the tradition of Nový Jičín and ranks among the oldest factories in the world with amazing 220 years of history. It exports its products to more than fifty countries around the world. This year's anniversary will commemorate not only the September festivities of the city, but also the first large publication mapping the hatter's history in our city. Radek Patách, Museum Novojičkiska

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Augustin Hückel Monument Unveiling Ceremony, September 6, 2019







Hans Hückel addressing the crowd.



The unveiling of the Augustin Hückel sculpture bust.



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I am wearing a late 1930s J. Hückel ´s Söhne "Flexible" "Seal Velour" made for Huthase Dresden, Leipzig, Chemnitz.


With Radek Polách Deputy Director Museum of the Nový Jičín Region and author of "Tonak 1799, 220 Years".


With Tonak Majority Owner Mikael Ahlström.


With Jirí Tourek CEO of Tonak.


With Stanislav Kopecký Mayor of Nový Jičín.


With Ondřej Syrovátka Second Deputy Mayor Nový Jičín.



With František Holub contributor to the "Tonak 1799, 220 Years".  Franta was wearing a fantastic 1950s Tonak "Velmia" Velour that belongs to his father.


With the Holub family.

Some background information on the Augustin Hückel

The Return of Augustin Hückel

In 1933 a bust with a commemorative plaque dedicated to Augustin Hückel was unveiled in a park in front of the factory of the Hückel family. The work of the sculptor Leopold Hückel, reminiscent of the founder of the industrial production of gargoyle in Nový Jičín, was removed in the early 1950s. Thanks to the Club of Natives and Friends of Nový Jičín, a copy of the bust was created, which will be unveiled on Friday 6 September on the occasion of the 220th anniversary of the establishment of today's TONAK company and on the eve of the City Celebration.


The natives of Nový Jičín rediscovered the missing bust of a significant native
11 July 2019, 11:55, Nový Jičín , Petra Dorazilová


The bust of one of the founders of the famous hat shop Augustin Hückel will return to Nový Jičín. It was removed from the park in front of the Tonak factory, which is the successor of this brand, in the 1950s.

The bronze bust of one of the founders of the world hat company, Augustin Hückel, was unveiled in the park in front of the Nový Jičín factory in 1933. It disappeared during the socialist era in the 1950s. Coincidence now led to the idea of her return. There is a copy in Germany.

"During last year's visit to Ludwigsburg, I discovered a model of the bust that the author's son, Leopold Hohel, provided to the compatriots archive that exists in Ludwigsburg," said Pavel Wessely, chairman of the Club of Natives and Friends of Nový Jičín.

Pavel Wessely expressed the wish that we lend the model to create a new bust. It was agreed to make a 3D scan of the model and the bust can be restored in Nový Jičín, ”confirmed Ruth Junkers, manager of the expatriate archive in Ludwigsburg (Germany).

The town of Nový Jičín paid the production of the copy, which cost 80 thousand crowns. The stone pedestal on which it will be placed will also be new.

This memorial should be built there during the holidays. Its construction will be taken care of by the Club of Natives and Friends of the City. It should be unveiled on the occasion of the town festival, ”said Ondřej Syrovátka (SZ), 2nd Vice-Mayor of Nový Jičín.

The face of the founder of the hat production will return to its original place in September, the year when the successor of the Hückel brand, today's Tonak, celebrates 220 years of its founding.


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