What really confused collectors and dealers for quite some time is the fact that there were so many 'Schlegelmilch' factories. Although the different firm owners had the same surname, they represented the production efforts of two distinctly un-related families. These facts have been known since 1984, the year that Bernd Hartwich published his results after intensive research on the matter. But this information was not available in America until the English translation was published in the U.S.A. in 1993. The extensive historical research by Ron Capers shows there was no blood relationship between Leonard and Reinhold.
The facts are actually quite simple. The first facility was owned by Reinhold and the other facility was owned by Leonard, who had named his firm after his father, Erdmann. These two operations were in direct competition with each other and the factory owned by Reinhold (Reinhold Schlegelmilch = 'R.S.', 'R.S. Prussia') was subsequently run with his two sons, Ehrhard and Arnold. The latter took over an existing porcelain factory in Tillowitz in 1894 and continued to run it as part of the Reinhold Schlegelmilch enterprise until he died in 1934.
The firm owned by Leonard was later on led by Oscar, Julius Martin, and Carl. Carl opened his own factory in 1882 and Oscar started his own factory in Langenwiesen during 1892. Julius Martin eventually took over the ownership of the Erdmann facility in 1899 after Leonard died.
 : Porzellanfabrik und -malerei Erdmann Schlegelmilch (1861 until 1937)
This factory was founded and led by Leonard Schlegelmilch, who lived between 1823 and 1898. He named it in memory of his father, Erdmann Schlegelmilch, who had lived between 1782 and 1844. This Schlegelmilch facility mainly produced kitchenware, tableware, figurines, collector stuff and coffee or tea sets. After Leonard died in 1899, his son Julius Martin continued business and slowly expanded until they reached their peak employment count of 360 people in 1913.
Between around 1920 and 1930 the company also produced some porcelain bodies used for perfume lamps manufactured by the ⇒Aerozon company in Berlin. The number of employees dropped down to 250 in 1930 and following the world financial crisis the Erdmann Schlegelmilch facility ceased continuous production between 1933 and 1935, but some limited attempts were made to continue production prior to the final closing in 1937.
One of the marks used by this manufacturer is often referred to as the 'beehive' mark, which in reality represents a banded shield used first by the k.k. Ärarial-Manufactur Wien (Royal Porcelain Manufactury) in Vienna (Austria), but because so many people see it as a beehive that is what it has become known as. All 'beehive' marks are extremely ambiguous and problematic because over the years many European porcelain manufacturers 'borrowed' it or invented their own variation, thus making identification very difficult. In case of the beehive used by Erdmann Schlegelmilch though it is easily identifiable as it included a dot. This mark was frequently used on porcelain decorated with mythical, classical or allegorical scenes with borders typically held in deep wine, dark green or cobalt blue.
The last mark shown down below (also shown in the book 'Marks of Prussia' by Ron Capers) is a distributor mark sometimes found on otherwise unmarked Erdmann Schlegelmilch items. Note that does *not* mean that *every* item marked with this stamp automatically is a Schlegelmilch item!
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(Picture: Rachel, Pam & Bruce)
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