History of the Iconic Cuckoo Clock
While Germany's Black Forest region might have lent its name to a decadently rich chocolate confection, the most emblematic symbol of the province is the big cuckoo clock. As portrayed in the fridge magnet, the artisans of Black Forest take pride in intricately carving these clocks out of dark wood. The themes range from distinctly forest settings to folk scenes. However, the crowning facet of these clocks is the little carved birds that pop out on the hour and make a melodious cuckoo call. The birds are often accompanied by other mechanical animals and tiny wooden people that emerge from other doors in the clock to mark the passing of each hour. Popular throughout the world for their timeless beauty, today's cuckoo clocks are an offshoot of the original Black Forest clock that was first invented in the German prefecture. The climatic conditions of the region are dark, cold and gloomy throughout the year, preventing agriculture and other nature dependent industries from thriving. At that time glass-making was a thriving industry and from it sprang the clock making business that invented the Black Forest or cuckoo clock. By the late 1700's clock making became a roaring business for the artisans of Black Forest with exports traveling as far afield as Russia. Franz Anton Ketterer is credited with inventing the first mainstream version of the cuckoo clock in the 1730's. Until then, clocks made by artisans in the region were known simply as Black Forest clocks. This resin fridge magnet souvenir will help you remember the wonderful days of your visit to Germany.
From Instruments of Time Keeping to Prized Collector's Items
The cuckoo clock of Black Forest has come a long way from its initial use as mechanization for keeping time. Today, the clocks are much in demand across Europe, and the US where they are treasured as prized collector's items. Families in the US hand them down from generation to generation as invaluable heirlooms, intact with the date and manufacturing details.