Craftsmen's village with ropery
The old ropery building Hartmann was opened as a ropery museum in May 2003. Inside there are numerous old tools, devices and machines of this craft, with the help of which even today the way of manufacturing ropes can be demonstrated to an interested public. Together with the blacksmith's shop and the stone-cutting workshop, the rope factory forms the Craftsmen's Village.
The "historical craftsmen's village" shows in a permanent exhibition the great importance of Rüthen's green sandstone as a variously used building material for the local as well as supra-regional history of architecture, art and culture. The geological structures, the mining regulations, the development of mining techniques, the forms of processing and the possible uses of the stone in the course of time are presented here in a clear form. This also includes a reconstructed old forge for the production of the tools and equipment required by the stonemasons and stonecutters in the past as well as today for the extraction and use of stone. This ensemble of buildings, which is rich in knowledge and experience, is supplemented by the directly adjacent original Rüthen "Reeperbahn" (= old Hartmann rope factory).
The craft of ropemaking (reepschleger or reepdreger) belonged to the numerous extra-professional trades many centuries ago. In the municipal occupational and trade statistics of the 19th century, the rope-making trade in Rüthen is documented as having six businesses in 1848, three in 1885 and two in 1900. One of these long-established workshops was the Hartmann rope spinning mill, which was already operated by Franziskus Hartmann at the beginning of the 19th century. With the death of his grandson Josef Hartmann in 1937, the rope spinning trade in Rüthen finally died out.
The massive ropemaking building, which can still be seen at this site, is made of brick, has a roof and 25 windows, and was erected in 1914 over a length of 60 m. Today, in its original appearance, it represents an industrial monument that has become very rare even beyond the region.
In this rope factory mainly products were manufactured according to the needs and orders of agriculture, e.g. sheaf bands, cattle halters, horse and plow ropes, band ropes for hay and grain transports, hauling ropes of different lengths and thicknesses etc., but also occasionally ship ropes, fishing nets, bell ropes and always a large number of twines and clothes lines for general household use. All ropemaking products were made of hemp, most of which was supplied in bales from Russia.
However, before the ropes, cords and lines were given their desired shape in length and diameter, long threads had to be spun from the raw hemp after the processing stages of heeling and combing. In the further manufacturing process, the individual threads were then twisted into cords (twining), which, depending on requirements, were then shaped into the desired end product in multiple thread paths by means of further precisely coordinated twisting processes using rope harnesses and carriages. In this way, the hemp threads were turned into a cord, the cords into a rope, and the cords were finally turned into a correspondingly strong rope: work processes that required a great deal of physical strength and special skill in the time before electrification.
Guided tours on request
Registration: Touristik und Stadtmarketing Rüthen Hochstraße 14 Rüthen Tel. 02952 / 818172 / 173 E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org