The first generation of manufacturers brought major changes to the city at the turn of the 19th century – building factories, encouraging an influx of workers, and fuelling the rapid development of new and existing suburbs. This laid the foundations for the later emergence of industrial areas – such as Cejl (Zeil) and the adjacent streets, Špitálka (Spitalwiese), Křenová and Mlýnská (Kröna), Dornych (Dornich), Hybešova (Strassengasse / Schulgasse) and Václavská (Wenzelsgasse), all of which were shaped by the presence of textile factories. These developments are the main subject of this book. The opening chapter offers a historical overview of Brno’s wool industry from its early beginnings to the present day. It is followed by a catalogue of selected textile entrepreneurs, industrialists and companies. The next chapter explains the processes used in wool production, from shearing to the final processing of woollen cloth. Unfortunately, the demise of the local wool industry has led to the irreversible loss of most of the machinery and equipment belonging to the former spinning mills, weaving mills and finishing shops. However, Brno’s Technical Museum does at least hold some examples of historical machinery (or parts of former machines), plus an extensive collection of pattern books formerly used by local companies. The last part of the book turns its attention to the buildings and sites of the former textile factories.
Viktor Kovařík, Pavel Zahradník