makers / Maison Krieger
Antoine Krieger, born in Alsace on June 5, 1804, set up shop in the Faubourg Sainte-Antoine (the furniture-making district of Paris) in 1826 and was married there in 1829. The marriage of his two daughters, one in 1849 to the cabinet-maker Claude-Julien Cosse, and the other in 1853 to the merchant Henry Racault, increased his prosperity. He then formed a partnership with his sons-in-law one of whom was to retire in 1858 and the other in 1870. At that date, the furniture and tapestry-making establishment, situated at 76 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine, was extended to include no. 74 of the same street. A grandson by marriage became one of the partners in 1880. From 1870 to 1955, when it ceded from the register of commerce, the company remained a family affair, in the hands of the Damon family which descended from Antoine Krieger's wife. Antoine Krieger, who retired from the company in 1860, and his son-in-law Cosse, on their deaths, respectively in 1869 and 1883, left considerable property. Cosse had banked upon the transformation of Paris by Haussmann by constructing an apartment building situated on the boulevard Voltaire. The Maison Krieger won prizes at the Exposition des produits de l'Industrie in 1849 and in the Universal Exhibitions of 1851 and 1855. At the 1851 exhibition an oak sideboard made for a client from the Ottoman Empire was noted in the press. A set of five drawings deposited at the Conseil de Prud'hommes (Industrial tribunal) of the Seine department on July 9, 1850 corresponds in fact, for four of them, to a command made by Meguerditch Djézaërli, banker and tax-farmer of the Constantinople customs office. The latter fell into disgrace on October 23 1852 and his debts were subsequently not honoured. A crisis followed involving the manufacturers, the French workers on the building site of Djézaërli's palace, the architect Agop Mélik, the French Embassy in Constantinople and the Ottoman government - in no hurry to honour the debts of this important man whose belongings had been sequestered. The Maison Krieger was one of the signatories of an urgent letter addressed, on February 5 1854, to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, demanding the intervention of the French Ambassador with the Turkish government.