From the 17th to the 20th Century - Krupp
The Krupp family were a prominent 400-year-old German dynasty from Essen...
read more Krupp Family
They became famous for their production of steel, artillery, ammunition, and other armaments.
The family business, known as Friedrich Krupp AG, was the largest company in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century.
It was important to weapons development and production in both world wars and was one of the most powerful dynasties in European history.
For 400 years Krupp flourished as the premier weapons manufacturer for Germany
From the Thirty Years' War in 1618, until the end of the Second World War.
They produced everything from:
- Guns - 8.8cm Flak 18
Birmingham Small Arms Factory BSA
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Until 1941 the Birmingham Small Arms Factory was the only munitions works in the UK producing small arms
On 26 August 1940 the BSA factory at Small Heath was bombed by the Luftwaffe resulting in one high explosive bomb and a shower of incendiaries hitting the main barrel mill which was the only one operating on service rifles in the country.
It caused the unaffordable loss of 750 machine tools but fortunately no loss of life.
Two further air raids took place on 19 and 22 November 1940.
The air raid of 19 November did the most damage, causing loss of production and trapping hundreds of workers. Two BSA night-shift electricians, Alf Stevens and Alf Goodwin, helped rescue their fellow workers. Alf Stevens was awarded the George Medal for his selfless acts of bravery in the rescue and Alf Goodwin was awarded the British Empire Medal. Workers involved in the works Civil Defence were brought in to help search for and clear bodies and to get the plant back into production.
The net effect of the November raids was to destroy machine shops in the four-storey 1915 building, the original 1863 gunsmiths' building and nearby buildings, 1,600 machine tools, kill 53 employees, injure 89, 30 of them seriously and halt rifle production for three months.
BSA - A group of businesses manufacturing:
- Military and Sporting Firearms