Company name: Koch & Palm
Address: Neuenteicherstr. 23, Elberfeld (1898) – Hagenauerstr. 30/32, Elberfeld (1907)
In business from: 1849? / more likely from 1895 – c. 1919 ?
Printer: yes Publisher: yes
Means of production / workforce:
1 letterpress and 9 litho flatbed presses plus other machinery, 200 workers in 1907 - 1913
chromolitho printer / deluxe (fancy) paper manufacturer with typical for this trade products: artist/greeting cards, art reproductions, calendars, advertising novelties, commercial printing
Pre-1900 reference books list establishing date of company as Oct. 1, 1849, probably an older firm taken over by Fritz Koch and Dr. phil. Johannes Palm, owners since Jan. 1, 1896. Later sources list the year 1895 the business was set up. By 1907 the firm was run by Fritz Koch and widow Dr. Johs. Palm. Not yet clear how long Kopal stayed in business. Not listed anymore in post-1919 printing trade address books. – Some cards with Kopal logo on were printed by combined collotype/litho process. Kopal is said to had been much involved in export printing. Still a rather mysterious business, said to have co-operated with the US publisher ‘International Art Publishing Co.’ Dr. Johannes Palm (guess meant is the widow Mrs. Palm?) left the company early 1911 according a business notice found in ‘Papier-Zeitung’ no. 20 from 9 March 1911.
Illustrations (from top):
Kopal card no. 251, not signed, chromolitho, not p/u, of pre-1905 date.
Kopal card no. 827, photo printed by collotype process and superimposed with litho colours and lacque finish. P/u 1907.
Kopal card no. 1441, New Years greeting, chromolitho, embossed, p/u 1913.
Kopal series 230. Chromolitho. For international distribution (Carte Postale). Not signed. P/u 1902 in Bavaria.
Kopal card. no. 250. Rural idyll. Excellent chromolitho. Not signed. Again for international distribution. Postmark illegible, undivided back = pre-1905 origin.
Kopal series 1014. Another rural village view. Looks like a gravure printing, even plate-sunk, but is actually a litho printing in (popular) sepia-style. P/u in 1909.
Kopal card or more likely series 372. Chromolitho printing. Not p/u with undivided back = issued prior to 1905. A couple praying on a potato field. One of several potato crop related paintings published by Koch & Palm. However, they did not mention the artist at all. This painting was done in 1855 by Jean-Francois Millet. Said to had been reproduced in great number at the turn of the century. Were the paintings of Millet available for reproduction without any charge? All other reproductions I have seen always mention painting title and artist name.