Brush Museum Todtnau: Introduction of the Storyteller

The steps and process for the production of brushware was shared between brushmakers, conditioners of bristles and wood workers who mainly lived in the villages close to Todtnau, Germany. The brush handles were produced on turning machines which were moved by waterpower. The purchase of bristles and hair at home and abroad such as France and Switzerland became a separate branch of trade. The travelling salesmen played a major role. In the early stages they only went to Switzerland or the upper Rhine. At different places they built depots to sell brushes directly at annual fairs or from door to door. 

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Todtnau’s 250-Year Black Forest Legacy

In the Black Forest of Germany 250 years ago, Todtnau was the cradle of brushes and brooms, which were made with beech wood and pig bristles. Brushes were already known in antiquity as findings in Egypt and Greece proved that brushes were used for cleaning, clothes and hair care. North of the Alps, discoveries from Roman military camps also show that brushes were used to care for soldiers and horses. Already around the year 1400 brush making was known to exist in Germany in Nuremberg.

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