A brand that started its business by making swords.
Situated on the river Wupper 30 km northeast of Cologne, the town of Solingen was founded in 1374. Now famed for its blade- making credentials, this town of 120,000 people has been home to the Carl Schmidt Sohn brand since 1829.
The presence of iron ore, and the proximity of the town to nearby Cologne (Germany’s richest trading center) meant that Solingen quickly became established as a metalworking center. Fine quality sword blades were made here in the fourteenth century, and Solingen was contracted to sell all of its swords and edged weapons to Cologne where handles were attached and the finished weapons sold. Since the late 14th and early 15th centuries Blacksmith smelters have been found around the Solingen town adding to Solingen's fame as a Northern Europe blacksmith center. Swords from Solingen have turned up in places such as the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms in the British Isles. Northern Europe prized the quality of Solingen's manufactured weaponry, and they were traded across the European continent.
Napoleon, who briefly ruled Solingen until his abdication in 1815 after the battle of Waterloo, abolished the trade guilds’ monopolies. Solingen's sword and cutlery industry grew rapidly although Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte of France blockaded it. Carl Schmidt Sohn began production of sabers in 1829. By 1830 the production was up to 2000 swords per week and employed more than 100 smiths, grinders and laborers. As Germany which was fast becoming a hot bed for industrial tool production Carl Schmidt Sohn also started producing knives, cutlery, shaving blades, scissors and pocket knives from 1869. As the overseas demand for knives grew, Carl Schmidt Sohn began to increase the knives production and fewer scissors and razors. As early as the turn of the century the majority of Carl Schmidt Sohn knives have been exported all over Europe.
Since then Carl Schmidt Sohn has been known for their excellence in manufacturing high-quality knives and cutlery based on a long-term production history in the city of Solingen. Today Solingen remains the knife center of Germany where about 90% of German knives are produced.
Already in 1928 the famous knife product lines like “Continental”, “Solingia” or “La Casita” were sold all over Europe with great success. 1829 has been dedicated to knife development and production for more than 180 years, and continuously improved the combination of form with function.