March 28, 1880

  • William Steinway’s diary: “Briefly inform Holwede of Theodor & I intending to have our own business in Hamburg & him as manager at which he is very much rejoiced.” The decision to open Steinway Pianofabrik in Hamburg is the most significant result of the strike. It shows William Steinway’s business acumen, solving with one action two major problems: how to make the business more independent from the demands of the labor unions, and to placate C.F. Theodor Steinweg, who, in the course of many years, have been threatening to open a separate business under his name and thus compete against Steinway & Sons (a frightening possibility, as the majority of Steinway & Sons patents have been granted to C.F. Theodor, and only licensed to the company).
  • Arthur von Holwede will remain the head of manufacturing operations in Hamburg until 1920.
  • William Steinway & C.F. Theodore Steinweg choose Hamburg because of its status of the free port at the time: there are no customs dues to pay on imported materials, and shipping available to any destination in continental Europe, Great Britain, Australia, and South, Central and North America. One disadvantage, however, is that there have been no piano manufacturing in Hamburg, therefore no supply of skilled workers with any pianomaking experience.