Brief biography | Son of a Craftsman | The Political Man | Engineer | Architect | Inspector of Public Buildings

A portrait of Heinrich Cluss
Heinrich Cluss (1792-1857), master builder in Heilbronn (photograph of a painting that has not survived / Smithsonian Institution Castle Collection, WDC)

Picture shows the "Wilhelmsbau" in Heilbronn
The "Wilhelmsbau" in Heilbronn (Gebrüder Metz, Tübingen / StadtA HN F003-M_0559-5210, Ausschnitt)

Son of a Craftsman

Adolf Cluss came from a family of master builders in Heilbronn. For generations, the Cluss family was active in the building trade. Adolf Cluss's grandfather-who moved in 1782 from Weinsberg and settled in Heilbronn-was a builder's foreman, serving the Elector, and later the King of Württemberg. It was also George Andreas Cluss who, in 1795, acquired the "Cluss House" in Klostergasse.

Heinrich Cluss, Adolf Cluss's father, was also a master builder, who owned vineyards and a winery. He invested in real estate ventures and sold sandstone from his allotment of the Heilbronn quarries. All of this commercial activity occupied him to such a degree that he declined election to the City Council in 1835-"as much as the undersigned thankfully acknowledges the trust placed in him by a respectable number of his fellow citizens who suggested that he be elected into the City Council."

Today's "Wilhelmsbau" was built by Heinrich Cluss and initially called "Clussbau".

Adolf Cluss eventually followed his father's and grandfather's profession, but left Heilbronn as a young man to be a traveling carpenter.

The ancestors of Adolf Cluss

The Cluss House in the Klostergasse



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