Discover who Newman Brothers sold to both nationally and internationally, along with the key historical figures associated with the company, and its top clients.

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Learn how changing attitudes towards death and mourning had an impact on the coffin furniture fashions of the day.

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Industry & Manufacturing

Learn why Birmingham was at the heart of the coffin furniture trade, and how Newman Brothers embraced the highs and survived the lows of the industry.

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Learn about the different roles at Newman Brothers and the stories of the many people who shaped life at the factory for over 100 years.

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The Victorians

Newman Brothers had a reputation for quality, selling to the country’s most elite funeral furnishers, including the royal undertakers.

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Find out about the key characters who made a difference, and discover how pay, pension rights, and tea breaks had an impact on the workforce.

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The Newman Brothers Collection is made up of around 100,000 objects, including furniture, metalwork, tools and machinery, textiles, oral histories and a business archive. Much of the collection spans the 105 years that Newman Brothers were in business giving us an insight into how this Victorian company once operated, eventually becoming Birmingham’s last coffin furniture manufacturer in 1998.

The Newman Brothers collection naturally falls into categories covering particular themes. Exploring the online archive thematically will help you navigate the collection if you wish to focus on a specific area in depth. Otherwise, feel free to use the ‘search our collection’ facility to discover specific objects, people or processes.