Siemens has played an impressive role in shaping the technological evolution of Germany, Europe and the whole world. Come join us on a trip through Siemens history. Here are nine chapters of our exciting, ever-changing evolution as a company. Explore the innovative technologies that made Siemens the company it is today. Get to know the people who made our history. Our country profiles show that Siemens has always been an international firm. The site is rounded out with current History News and an overview of our work at the Siemens Historical Institute.
Only those who are aware of their own background and development, their key milestones and special characteristics, can manage the present and shape the future successfully.
Siemens in Berlin – A company and a city
Siemens history always at hand! We've packed Berlin's industrial history into an app: Take eleven historical episodes to search for traces in the capital and discover how Siemens helped shape Berlin's industrial history. Here you can already get to know four of these historic places.
Housework made easy – Bosch-Siemens-Hausgeräte GmbH (BSHG) is founded
Founded in 1967 as a joint venture between Robert Bosch GmbH, of Stuttgart, and Siemens AG, of Munich, today BSH Hausgeräte GmbH is Europe’s biggest home appliance maker and one of the world’s leaders in its industry. Let’s have a look at the early days of appliance production at Siemens and the history of BSH.
Lift me up! Werner von Siemens presents the world’s first electric elevator
Nowadays we don’t give it a second thought when we hop on an elevator to the upper floors of a tall building. But it wasn’t always so. For a very long time, people had to trudge up one flight of stairs after another – certainly a big reason why the skyscraper era did not begin until the late 19th century.
An American challenge – The turbulent beginnings of Siemens USA
Werner von Siemens and his brother William made their initial business contacts in the United States during the mid-1840s. On March 4, 1892, Siemens established its first American subsidiary. But fate had nothing good in store for Siemens & Halske Electric Co. of America.
A name and a commitment – The birth of the Siemens trademark
For over 170 years now, the Siemens name has stood worldwide for technical performance, innovation, quality, reliability and internationality. These attributes are also expressed in the company’s trademark. The mark has offered a clear commitment since 1899: Siemens generates trust and added value for customers, employees and society at large.
Werner von Siemens – A dynamic, visionary entrepreneur
Werner von Siemens was a visionary entrepreneur who brought key advances in the electrical goods industry. The pointer telegraph he designed was the cornerstone of the telegraph construction company that he founded in 1847 – the “Telegraphen-Bauanstalt von Siemens & Halske” – which quickly evolved into an international enterprise. In 1866 he discovered the dynamo-electric principle, possibly his most significant accomplishment in the field of electrical engineering.
Shining bright – The interlinked history of Siemens and OSRAM
Though Siemens and OSRAM have now gone their separate ways, the two companies can look back on a shared history that lasted for almost 100 years. Over that time, the lighting manufacturer developed into one of the most iconic brands in the world. And today it’s known around the world as the quintessential name in lighting. Siemens’ role in that evolution was anything but trivial.
Building for the future – A long-term commitment to the Berlin location
It all started 171 years ago in Berlin, in a rear courtyard in Kreuzberg, where Werner von Siemens and Johann Georg Halske founded the company that has long been at home throughout the world. A few decades later, at the end of the 19th century, the “startup” – as it would be referred to today – at Schöneberger Strasse 19 became a corporation that began planning a new, much larger site: Siemensstadt.
Walter Reichel – A Siemens Engineer with Courage and Vision
Siemens is a name that has long stood for close contact with science and research. Dialog between practitioners and theoreticians is one of the main factors that has driven new product development and attracted the next generation of Siemens staff. Engineer Walter Reichel was well aware of that fact. His main field was power engineering, electric railways were his design passion, and the still-young field of electrical engineering was a constant source of fascinated curiosity.
Electrifying Norway – Where Siemens has been a reliable partner for 120 years
Siemens founded its first Norwegian company in December 1898 – the beginning of a successful technological partnership that has continued down to today. Whether in establishing a hydroelectric power supply or setting up modern information and communication networks, Siemens has made significant contributions toward the growth of an advanced, forward-looking country.
The foreground needs a background. Where have we come from, and where are we heading?
The only way to master the present and shape the future is to know one’s own past. Innovativeness, a commitment to quality and customers, internationality, crisis-tested strength, adaptability and a powerful sense of responsibility: These characteristics have guided Siemens throughout its history. Over the course of more than 170 years, they’ve made it the company it is today.
SIMATIC through history. From transistors to the digital factory
Automation technology is the backbone of industrial production; it makes facilities more productive, efficient, reliable, and faster. With SIMATIC, in 1958 Siemens lays the foundation to its role as a global leader in automation technology. Join us on our journey through 60 years of SIMATIC history.
Looking to the future. Werner von Siemens: Visionary and man of action
Today, Siemens is one of the largest, most innovative companies in the world. This history feature tells how it all began, guiding visitors through the key moments in the company founder’s life. To tell the story, historic photographic material is used in new, surprising ways, combining evocative images with a 3-D sound track. It provides a new way of looking at Werner von Siemens as a pioneer and visionary who thought in entirely new, global ways for his era.
Increasingly influential. Notes on the history of women at the company
Women have played a key role at Siemens since the company’s early days. Just as society has changed, the importance of women workers at the company has steadily grown. From the first women workers in incandescent lamp production to power at the top levels of management: here are some historical notes on how women have contributed to the company’s success.
The Siemens Historical Institute has the task of documenting the diverse history of our technology company, founded in Berlin in 1847, as well as researching that history and making it accessible to a broad target audience. We work with well-known partners from academia and practical research to present the company’s economic, technical, and social development. By bridging the gap between the past, the present and the future we help heightening the company’s profile.
We work with well-known partners from academia and in practical research to present the company’s economic, technical and social development, portraying it consistently with the highest scholarly standards. Our work therefore concentrates on three general areas of activity.
Procuring, documenting and transmitting knowledge about the technology company’s more than 170-year history: that’s our job. Find out more about our corporate archives, and experience history almost at first hand.
Siemens has a long, successful history that serves as the focus for the Siemens Historical Institute’s publications and projects. We make sure that Siemens’ history stays alive and vivid, within the economic, political, social and technological setting of each era. Find out more about our extensive holdings and services.
Siemens appears in historical and current-events exhibitions, showrooms and experiential environments all over the world. We support the company’s communications activities by either developing exhibitions on our own initiative or cooperating with other departments in conceiving and producing similar projects.
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