From a work jacket to the zinc angel, from the drive shaft to the timer clock – the LVR-Industriemuseum collection has an astounding wealth of items in store. More than 300,000 exhibits are stored in the central museum repository which is accommodated in what was once the main storage warehouse of the Gutehoffnungshütte in Oberhausen. They all tell countless stories of life and work in the industrial age and at the same time document important aspects of industrial and social history in the Rhineland from the late 18th century until today.
Abandoned factory premises and the respective inventory were taken over at the outset of the collecting process. These being the largest and most important exhibits they communicate the history of the textile industry and heavy industry in the Rhineland as well as metal and paper processing as a showcase. The thematic structure of the collection which reflects the former working and living environment around the selected factories corresponds to this: with historical cutting utensils such as pocket knives and scissors, machines to handle and process cotton, wool, clothing and woollen fabric, items made of paper, carton, cardboard and plastic, water turbines and hammer forges as well impressive large-scale exhibits from the mining and steel producing industries.
As the inventories of sector-specific items constantly expanded, key collection areas emerged which convey the regional and occasionally also cross-regional industrial and everyday culture and form a link through their materiality.
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