The history

Charles Reuge founded a Swiss company «Reuge» in 1865. Charles Reuge settled down in the town of St Croix's in Switzerland where he was engaged in production of music clocks. In 1886 Charles’s son, Albert, registered the Reuge trademark and started the production of music boxes, turning his father’s modest workshop into a respected European manufactory.

Thanks to the investments and assistance of the Reuge family, the firm grew into one of the leading producers of music curiosities. The company was engaged in production of various objects – from the inexpensive musical pocket watches to complicated jukeboxes and expensively decorated jewellery caskets.

The development of the recording industry together with the emergence of record players, vinyl records, and tape recorders significantly reduced the demand for music boxes, thus affecting their manufacturers. However, following this recession music boxes became fashionable again in the 1950s. The Reuge Music company in Switzerland is still active, engaged in production of music boxes, mechanical singing birds and music pocket watches.

Reuge is one of the Switzerland’s last surviving manufactures of music boxes of all shapes and sizes, with and without automata, of contemporary design with clear acrylic sides allowing to watch the movement operation. To a certain extend they had broken from the traditional cylinder patterns and started to produce conservative looking music boxes with removable metal disks for around 1,000 euros

Exhibits in the Museum Collection