Heiligerstraße 6, Osterstraße 76 & 54, Hannover. Lower Saxony.
Zinngeißerei und Malerei, spez. Zinnsoldaten / Pewterer and decorator, speciality pewter soldiers
August Ludwig Rieche (b.10th Oct.1839 in Sarstedt - d.28th Feb. 1893 in Hannover) was apprenticed to Georg Friedrich Harnisch. Afterwards he worked for Johann Ernst Dubois until in 1866, he founded his business in Heiligerstraße 6, once he had become a Zinngeißereimeister. This address still exists today. It was situated on the corner of an alley, Spreenswinkel, which was a notorious "red light" area. In 1903 the company was taken over by August's sons, Ernst, August and Franz (b.1880 - d1939). Franz was the mould designer for the military figures. After 1918, the marketplace required historically correct designs, which Franz obtained from old paintings and books. These he sculpted and engraved into figures, which went to create the moulds. The resulting castings were usually decorated by outworkers. There was also a Leopold Rieche, probably a relative of the Rieche brothers, who was considered to be a master decorator. Around 1925, the company was taken over by Walter Beißner, at a similar time to their move to Osterstraße, with Franz staying on until his death in 1939. The shop at No.76 Osterstraße was larger than the one in Heiligerstraße, having two display windows, plus a separate workshop in a yard across the road at No.54. The business ended when the street was bombed in October 1943.