1850 - 1899

The age of high industrialisation with the railways, coal mining, the iron and steel industry, mechanical engineering and the textile industry also had a regional impact on the Habsburg monarchy. Exhibits from that era continue to shape the collections of the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum) to this day. On show alongside the former museums for the post office, railways and industrial hygiene are typewriters and adding machines, early photograph and film cameras as well as telephone sets, pianoforte by Viennese manufacturers, bicycles and early automobiles such as the Marcus Car.

Filter: All collection areas (51 Objects found)
Collection area: Everyday Life
  • FA-121666

    Mechanical vacuum cleaner, approx. 1890 - 1910

    Dust is dangerous and we are surrounded by it - this perception came about from 1850 onwards. Dust removal became the driving force for technical development. The vacuum cleaner is one product of these endeavours.

  • FA-122371

    "Heidelberg tank system", sectional model, 1881

    What to do with human excrements? The technical solution for the disposal of excrements required inventiveness and time-consuming experimentation.

  • FA-114745

    "Haywards Hand Fire Grenade", around 1880

    The so-called fire extinguishing grenade is the early version of a modern hand fire extinguisher. This rare item is on exhibit at the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum).

Collection area: Energy & Mining
  • FA-123738_Davy'sche Sicherheitslampe

    The Davy safety lamp

    Just a single spark underground could be life threatening until Humphrey Davy secured the miner's lamp against firedamp explosions through the use of a close-meshed metal net.

  • FA-123520

    Model of an overshot waterwheel

    From teaching room to museum: overshot waterwheels have been known in Europe since the Middle Ages. Mill building was for many years determined by the experience and traditions of craftsmen.

  • FA-117483

    The first diesel engine built in Austria

    The rather different engine: for his engine, Rudolf Diesel first developed a scientific theory, which he then put into practice.

  • FA-123525

    Petrol engine by Siegfried Marcus

    Who invented the car? Don't worry, the tiresome question of paternity is not about to be readdressed. If Siegfried Marcus had really wanted to invent the car, it would certainly have turned out more elegantly.

  • FA-123527

    Gramme dynamo

    From the World Exhibition to Berndorf: cutlery was plated and streets lit by use of the dynamo.

  • FA-123354

    Egger electric motor

    When men of God build machines, Part 2: Martin Egger failed with his electric motor, which was never built.

  • FA-114180

    Alliance machine

    Fiat Lux! The strong light of the arc lamp was used for lighthouses and military purposes.

Collection area: Information & Communication
  • FA-112751

    Siphon recorder

    Overland and submarine telegraph cables effect increased global networking. By means of telegraphic transmission, news spreads around the world in no time at all.

  • FA-108979

    Morse station with ink recorder

    The telegraph developed by Samuel F. B. Morse transmits messages using long and short electric impulses according to the so-called Morse alphabet.

  • FA-112422

    Edison Triumph Phonograph

    Thomas A. Edison successfully manages to record sound waves on wax cylinders. However, the procedure is unsuitable for commercial marketing purposes, as each cylinder has to be recorded individually.

  • FA-110582

    Lithographic star-wheel press

    From 1800 onwards, lithography becomes the main method of producing picture prints –everything from playing cards to landscape illustrations.

  • FA-123861


    In the mid 15th century, Johannes Gutenberg develops movable type printing, thereby setting the foundation for modern book culture. 

  • FA-123558

    Linotype Simplex

    The Linotype typesetting machine makes it possible to set thousands of letters per hour via a keyboard, thereby making hand composition redundant.

  • FA-112066


    The electrotachyscope by Ottomar Anschütz, the kinetoscope by Thomas A. Edison and the cinematograph by the Lumière brothers present motion pictures.

  • FA-110306

    Stereoscopic viewer

    The stereoscope enables three-dimensional image perception. After being presented at the World Expo in 1851, stereographic images are circulated around the world.

  • FA-111604


    The Arithmometer by Charles Xavier Thomas can perform all the basic mathematical calculations, thus yielding time savings for the commercial sector. 

  • FA-110565

    Coupé-Landauer, Type XX

    Apart from conveying mail, stagecoaches also transport travellers. An extensive network of travel routes is set up, which exists until the era of railway transportation comes into being.

Collection area: Production Technology
  • FA-114033

    Foot warmer, stoneware, England, 1853

    Anyone in England who happened to own a foot warmer by Doulton & Watts around 1850 could certainly count themselves lucky. With their distinctive snout-shaped handle these stoneware hot water bottles were sometimes referred to as ‘pigs’.

  • FA-124250_Glasgravurmaschine

    Glass engraving machine with accessories, c. 1850

    Six generations were dedicated to the craft of glass engraving. That dynasty’s last master engraver finally closed her Viennese shop in 2010, after 46 years, and her long-serving machine became fit for a museum.

  • FA-123794

    Model of a glassworks (hand-blown glassworks), 1893

    Working at a glass furnace requires team spirit, strength, skill, experience, and a good pair of lungs. That’s what it takes to tame and mould temperamental material into the most delicate of shapes.

  • FA-116546

    Display case: Phosphorus necrosis of the jaw, c 1895

    ‘Those in darkness drop from sight’: the manufacture of phosphorus matchsticks caused horrendous upper jaw pathologies among many employees, not to mention severe pain. Some even died of it.

  • FA-123467

    Book of samples with Japanese silk fabrics, 1st half of the 20th century

    A beautiful death: silkworms use their salivary glands to produce precious silk fibres and then pupate inside the cocoons formed as a result. But before they are allowed to hatch, the silkworms are boiled in hot water or steamed inside the cocoons.

Collection area: Technical and Scientific Principles

Collection area: Traffic & Transport
  • FA-123611

    Trisanna Bridge junction

    The construction of the Arlberg Railway posed huge challenges for engineers. The Trisanna Bridge, together with the 12.4 km Arlberg Tunnel, proved particularly demanding.

  • FA-123342

    Court saloon carriage

    Empress Elisabeth of Austria famously enjoyed travelling. In 1873 two railway carriages were built for her own personal use, of which the sleeper has been preserved.

  • FA-124228

    Daimler Waggonet

    Automobile pioneer Gottlieb Daimler also developed the first rail-mounted vehicle with a combustion engine. One such vehicle is preserved in its original state at the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum).

  • FA-123351

    Stadtbahn 3rd class passenger carriage

    A small twin-axle carriage from the collections of the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum) proves that it’s not just luxury Belle Epoque trains that were panelled in teak.

  • FA-123608

    Porer lighthouse, built in 1890

    “Model dedicated by the imperial & royal maritime authority in Trieste 1890” – the base inscription reveals the pride felt for the comprehensive and modern equipment of this navigational aid.

  • Dampfluftschiff von Heinrich Ressel

    Model of the Ressel airship project, built in 1871

    While Heinrich Ressel’s airship was patented, it literally never got off the ground. It exists only in model form, and for a very long time Heinrich Ressel was forced to repay the costs involved.

  • Modell des Vollschiffes "Austria Trieste"

    Model of the fully rigged ship Austria-Trieste, built in 1884

    The age of the sailing ship was slowly drawing to a close. This particular type of merchant ship was among the last to rival the steamship.

  • FA-108944

    Marcus Car, 1888/1889

    The oldest automobile in the world? The Marcus Car features many remarkable technical achievements, a fact that was (almost) lost in the debate surrounding its dating.

  • FA-108497

    Rudge penny-farthing, made in England, 1885

    Penny-farthing riders were the “kings of the country roads”. Indeed, riding these high wheelers required a good sense of balance and a degree of courage. Falling off a penny-farthing was not to be encouraged.

  • FA-111551

    Coventry Machinists double-seater three-wheeler, c. 1890

    This double-seater three-wheeler was advertised – somewhat tongue-in-cheek – as a “matchmaker”. Riding the tricycle was easy to learn and, unlike the penny-farthing, accessible to women also.

Die Quellenvielfalt des Archivs

Collection area: Everyday Life
Collection area: Energy & Mining
Collection area: Information & Communication
Collection area: Production Technology
Collection area: Technical and Scientific Principles
Collection area: Traffic & Transport
Die Quellenvielfalt des Archivs
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