Tour Overview

Join Bill Rosauer, LHSA President Emeritus and Viewfinder Journal Editor for a once in a lifetime experience visiting the home of the Leica, Wetzlar, Germany. Bill will personally guide you on this discovery tour of the new facilities at Leitz Park as well as the historic places important to Leica history in the old city of Wetzlar.

We will also have an exclusive 3 hour meeting with Andreas Kaufmann on Day 1!


Leitz Park

Tour of Leitz Park, including the new Leica Factory, Customer Care Department and Museum. You will have an exclusive in depth visit to the Archives with Monika Bock, Curator along with Jim Lager, world renowned Leica expert and author. In addition, we have many special events planned at Leitz Park. Stefan Daniel, Product Manager and Peter Karbe, Head of Optical Design at Leica, will give special presentations to our group and you will be able to ask questions of both Stefan and Peter. We will also visit the newly opened photo exhibition spaces and of course the Leica Store will be on our list. Join Leica employees for lunch at the Casino Restaurant at Leitz Park, or take a break for coffee and pastry at the Café Leitz.

Original Photograph of the Eisenmarkt taken with the Ur-Leica by Oskar Barnack

Original Photograph of the Eisenmarkt taken with the Ur-Leica by Oskar Barnack

Old Wetzlar

In old Wetzlar, we will visit the places Oskar Barnack and the Leitz family knew so well. Stand on the same spot at the historic Eisenmarkt where Barnack took one of the first images with the Ur-Leica. We will visit the old Leitz factory Hochhaus and adjacent Administration Building. See the historic Hausertor Werke, where the Leica camera was first produced. We will see the original Leitz Administration Building, site of the famous Board Meeting of 1924 where Ernst Leitz II made the fateful decision to take the risk and make Barnack’sLeica camera. A visit with Lars Netopil, VP of Leica Historica is planned at his shop in Wetzlar. During this visit, you will have a chance to obtain a personalized copy of Lars Netopil’s new book, “Museum Leica”.


House Friedwart

Exclusive for our tour, we will be the special guests of Knut Kühn-Leitz, grandson of Ernst Leitz II for a personal guided tour of Haus Friedwart, the Leitz family home. Located on the Kalsmunt with a view of historic Wetzlar and the Leitz factory, construction of the house was begun at the time Ernst Leitz II traveled with Oskar Barnack to America with the Ur-Leica for evaluation. The basic plan was drawn up by Jean Emil Schmidt, architect to the firm of Ernst Letiz. Bruno Paul, an early proponent of Art Deco, was responsible for planning and execution of the interior design and details. Knut and his mother, Elsie Kühn-Leitz, resided in the house for many years. Haus Friedwart provided its owner with a suitable space for a rich social life, and hosted many notable guests over the years, including Albert Schweitzer, Theodore Heuss and Konrad Adenauer. The house is listed as a State of Hesse historic landmark site, and remains a venue for public events in the areas of music, literature and politics.