Berlin Biedermeier-era museum reopens

Knoblauchhaus history museum in Mitte reopens after long renovation project

Berlin’s Knoblauchhaus history museum in Mitte has reopened after a long renovation project. The house is one of the few relatively unchanged buildings built in Berlin in the 1700’s, although its focus is actually on the Biedermeier period (1815-48), particularly on that era’s furniture and household trappings.

The Knoblauchhaus is so old that it was used as a museum once before in its history, from 1821-1918. This ended with World War I, however, when the space was converted to a boarding house. After World War II, it became a wine restaurant.

After German reunification, the Knoblauch family (now mostly based in western Germany) started a foundation to raise money and donate artwork and furniture to the museum (which, with the fall of the Berlin Wall, became easier for the family to visit). The museum reopened in 1989, expanded with their help, and is now run by the city’s museum agency. (tbp, 19 Jan 2007)