The nowadays known company "LHS-Germany GmbH" is a company for the distribution of explosives, blasting equipment, black and propellant powder. Today it is located in Nordheim vor der Rhoen. It was founded in 2002 in continuation and restructuring of the historic company "Leopold Hartmann, formerly Chr. Hartmann ".
For 140 years the company's buildings were seated in a castle in Sondheim vor der Rhoen which was owned by the family “von Waltershausen” for a long time. On January 28, 1372 it was sold by Heinrich von Waltershausen to Gyso von Steinau. In 1689 it came into the possession of Lieutenant Colonel Ferdinand Gottfried von Gebsattel. That is the reason why the castle is called "Schloss Gebsattel” today. Until 1851 it belonged to the descendants of Gebsattels.
After changing ownership the merchant Christian Hartmann bought the castle with garden in 1859 for 4,000 gulden. He founded the Hartmann company by setting up a material business in the castle which, as one chronicler writes, was "connected with the export of Rhoen products: roots, herbs, berry juice, venison, etc.“.
Fruit wines were produced in the extensive basement rooms. In 1862 Christian Hartmann started the business and took over the newly established post office in the same year. When the railway line Mellrichstadt - Fladungen was put into operation in 1898 Hartmann used it as one of the first for its general cargo traffic.
On January 1, 1899 Christian Hartmann handed over the business to his two sons, Gustav and Leopold, who divided it among themselves and continued to run it separately. The fruit press was taken over by Gustav Hartmann under the company name "Christian Hartmann, owner Gustav Hartmann, Grand Ducal Saxon court purveyor". The core business with material goods, spirits, cigars, flour, cereals and the dispatch of honey and game Leopold Hartmann continued under the name "Leopold Hartmann, formerly Christian Hartmann, Grand Ducal-Saxon court purveyor".
Thus the two companies remained family-owned. The descendants of Gustav Hartmann expanded the business and made it through large structural changes to a modern production company for fruit wines and berry juices. In the fifth generation these products are still produced in the "Castle Gebsattel" in Sondheim vor der Rhoen and are available under this name on the market.
At the beginning of the 20th century Leopold Hartmann extended his business and shipping to trade with explosives. The sale of explosives was increasingly extended by the increasing exploitation of the Rhoen basalts. Thanks to the development of the Rhoen by the railways, basalt could increasingly be mined for road and railway construction, which not only brought about an economic boom for the Hartmann company, but for the entire Rhoen region. The Chronicle of Nordheim v. d. Rhoen, a neighboring village of Sondheim v. d. Rhoen, it was apparent that built there in 1897 a basalt stone work by cable car and taken in 1898 in operation. Until 1970, this basalt stonework provided jobs for over 100 people.
After the death of Leopold Hartmann the management of the company Hartmann took over his son Rudolf in 1935. Witnesses from that time reported that blasting and detonating materials for the quarry on the Rothberg which belonged to the basalt stone factory Nordheim v. d. Rhoen where transported by local workers on foot and in backpacks in. In the 1950s, Rudolf Hartmann ventured to expand the business by starting to manufacture explosives warehouses.
In 1962 after Rudolf Hartmann's death his widow Helen Hartmann initially took over the business but gave up the store and the food trade in 1970.
Her son Rainer Hartmann continued to operate as a salesman for blasting and igniters and expanded it to the field of blasting equipment and the wholesale of black and propellant powder in Europe.
In the field of blasting equipment the company is unique with its product range in the German and European market. Followed the construction of an explosives storage in 1966/68 a new and modern explosive storage was built in 1980. In 1984 was an office and warehouse building in Nordheim v. d. Rhoen acquired. Meanwhile this building is the seat of the company.
On 1 July 2002 a major change in the company's situation occurred when Rainer Hartmann sold his company to the three leading employees Roland Ehwald, Friedhelm Landgraf and Horst Landgraf. These three continued to run the company as managing directors under the name "LHS-Germany GmbH". After a long illness Rainer Hartmann died at the age of only 60 on March 12, 2005. Since the end of 2016 the management has been in the hands of Friedhelm Landgraf and Horst Landgraf. Today, the divisions are divided into: explosives and detonators, blasting accessories as well as black and propellant powders. The "Yellow Catalogue" which was first published in 1975/76 and has a comprehensive catalogue of blasting accessories has a high profile in the "world of blasting technology".
In 2017 the old company logo from the 1970s was replaced with a modern logo so the visual conversion process of "LHS-Germany GmbH" began. The three coloured diamonds reflect the core areas of the company (black and propellant = grey, explosives = red and blasting accessories = yellow). In addition there is a new website and an online shop for the further development of the company.
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