Since its inception in 1663 until well into the 19th century, Rudolstädter Hofbuchdruckerei was among the most important economic and cultural undertakings in the principality of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt. This print shop was founded in the wake of the mutual relationship with the letterpress and the Reformation. There was a huge increase in demand for Protestant literature, ephemera for school use, and personnel or occasional writings. The need for such a project was controversy in the Reformation lands. Luther in his “Table Talk” emphasizes: “The high benefits of Buchdruckerei”, through printing the Scriptures is opened and spread out in all tongues and languages, all arts and sciences are obtained, multiplied and propagated to our descendants.

In its heyday in the late 18th century to the first third of the 19th century, Hofbuchdruckerei became a company and received orders from 161 publishers, mainly from central and northern Germany, Denmark and the former Prussian provinces of East and West Prussia, Silesia and the Baltic province of Livonia under Russian rule.

Rudolstaft was a favourable geographical location for printing, because of the proximity to the fairgrounds of Leipzig, Nuremberg and Berlin, the university cities Weimar and Jena, and trade routes for distribution across Europe. In addition, local favourable economic factors included low prices and good supply of paper in the appended paper mills, and a long tradition of quality and reliability in an (almost) uncensored environment.

Source: Exhibition Rudolstädter Hofbuchdruckerei

Die Fürstlich privilegierte Hofbuchdruckerei Rudolstadt (1772-1824).
Die Fürstlich privilegierte Hofbuchdruckerei Rudolstadt (1772-1824).

Based on sources evaluated for the first time, the story of this Princely printing house between 1663 and 1824 is presented with a description of activities associated with the representation of this Publisher in Riga, Dresden and Leipzig.

Fröbelsche Hofbuchdruckerei Rudolstadt (1825 – 1875)

Günther Fröbel war ein Sohn von Carl Poppo Fröbel, der von 1811 bis 1878 lebte. Günther Fröbel druckte wahrscheinlich ab 1830 bis 1875

Geschichte des Klosters Paulinzelle

Ludwig Friedrich Hesse, Geschichte des Klosters Paulinzelle (Rudolstadt : Gedruckt in der Froebelschen Hofbuchdruckerei, 1815).

Beitrage Zur Landesgeschichte Des Furstenthums Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt (1864) (German) Hardcover
by Hofbuchdruckerei

Schwarzburgisches Sion; oder, Schwarzburgs geistliche liederdichter in biographischen skizzen nebst einer auswahl ihrer lieder. Zum besten des zu Rudolstadt zu gründenden rettungshauses für verwahrloste kinder.
Publisher: Rudolstadt, Gedruckt in der Fürstl. priv. hofbuchdruckerei, 1857.

Carl Poppo Froebel

Bought the Hofbuchdruckerei in Rudolstadt.

Recentiorum poetarum selecta carmina ed by Carl Poppo Froebel Published 1822

A younger half brother of Friedrich, Carl Poppo Froebel was born 2 November 1786 in Oberweißbach and died 15 March 1824 in Rudolstadt. Carl Poppo was the first son of Johann Jakob Fröbel and his second wife

Dr. phil., von 1807 – 15 Professor am Gymnasium in Rudolstadt, kaufte die Hofbuchdruckerei in Rudolstadt und wirkte als Schriftsteller.

Gymnasium Rudolstadt
Between 1807 and 15 Dr Carl Froebel taught at the Gymnasium in Rudolstadt

Carl Poppo married Johanne Sophie Dorothea Scheibe (born 6.5.1788 in Rudolstadt died 20. 7. 1829 in Rudolstadt), the daughter of the Fürstlichen Hofintendanten Scheibe in Rudolstadt). Their son Günther Fröbel was born 5 October 1811 in Rudolstadt and died 3 February 1878 in Rudolstadt.

General emigration newspaper

A messenger between the old and the new world. Edited by Günther Fröbel and Traugott Bromme. Hofbuchdruckerei Froebel. Rudolstadt, 1846-1871.

Allgemeine-Zeitung: ein Bote zwischen der alten und der neuen Welt. Herausgegeben von Günther Fröbel und Traugott Bromme. Hofbuchdruckerei Fröbel. Rudolstadt, 1846 – 1871.


After nearly 60 years of interruption of Masonic activity in Rudolstadt the Lodge “Günther zur Eintracht”, meaning “Günther concord” was established on 6 September 1992 in the Green Room of the Heidecksburg. In 2012, the Masons of Rudolstadt celebrated the 20th anniversary of this event.

“Decisive for the future will be whether Freemasons use their resources to preserve proven traditions and at the same time be open to innovations. This includes openness to people and the courage for human encounter in the bond of friendship of the lodge. These also include preserving the richness of old forms, but also eliminating unnecessary and outdated decoration. And that includes participation in the important discourses of the present. Many of these discourses have relations with the Masonic tradition, they may relate to the development of education, on the ethics issue, the appropriation and implementation of values or reflections on the art of living. Freemasonry saw itself always as the art of living”. Prof. Hans Hermann Höhmann

A lodge of freemasons was formed at Rudolstadt on 18 March 1785 named “Günther zum stehenden Löwen” after the reigning Prince of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, Ludwig Günther and the lion of Schwarzburg.


Prince Ludwig Günther (1708-1790) was a member of this lodge as was his grandson, Prince Ludwig Friedrich II (1767-1807). Other prominent members of this lodge included Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schiller and Johann Gottlieb Fichte.

During the first 50 years after 1737, when a lodge was formed at Hamburg, around 400 lodges were founded with the support of Friedrich the Great, who was attracted by the tolerant spirit of the freemasonry.

“Ode auf den zu Hubertusburggeschlossenen Frieden” and “Der Mensch” by Carl Gerd von Ketelhodt zum Unterricht were printed in 1763 at Rudolstadt.

During the visit of the young Duke Carl August of Weimar in December 1775, freemasons of Rudolstadt and Weimar met at the “Zur Güldenen Gabel” inn.

The bronze statue shows Carl August - duke and later grand-duke of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach - on horseback in a general´s uniform with a garland made of laurel, oak leafs and flowers. The heroic interpretation inspired by the antique works of art refers to his participation in the wars of liberation in 1814. This work by local sculptor Adolf von Donndorf was unveiled in 1875 in order to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Carl August´s reign.
A bronze statue of Carl August , duke and later grand-duke of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach, on horseback with a garland made of laurel, oak leafs and flowers. The heroic interpretation inspired by the antique works of art refers to his participation in the wars of liberation in 1814. This work by local sculptor Adolf von Donndorf was unveiled in 1875 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Carl August´s reign.

Under Carl August, Weimar became a literary centre in Europe. During the Napoleonic Wars the marriage of his son to the daughter of the Russian Tsar, Maria Pawlowna, guaranteed his political survival and at the Congress of Vienna earned him the title of a Grand Duke.

In 1857, Hofdruckereibesitzer G. Froebel gathered together Freemasons in this region to restore this lodge, which had not met since 1829. According to the constitution of 14 September 1859, the name “Günther zur Eintracht“, or “Günther concord” was chosen to honour Friedrich Günther (1793 – 1867), the reigning prince in Rudolstadt.