The history of Royal Duyvis Wiener B.V. starts in 1885 with Pieter Mattheus Duyvis (1857 – 1935), the fourth son in a manufacturers dynasty from the Zaan region. Pieter “P.M.” Duyvis studied Mechanical Engineering at the Technical University in Delft and together with his fellow student Mr. D.W. Stork, he founded on the 1st of November 1885, the machine factory “Twente”. Among other items, cranes, lifts and bridges were built.
The transition from the wind – to the steam era, ensured enough work, as a lot of factories and boats switched to steam and needed often maintenance. In the factory, the machines were driven by steam engines through a central drive shaft and drive belts.
The first expansion took place in 1904, when simultaneously a technical – and administration office were realized. A big order came in: the production of the gear of the second Hemspoor bridge over the North Sea canal in Zaandam.
In 1909, due to a multiple number of orders, a new factory hall was built. In 1911, partner Eng. P.M. Duyvis Sr. was appointed director of the enterprise and Mr. Eng. W. Meyling was appointed as co-director. He came from the Stork – Meyling & Co. company in Hengelo. He got the assignment to develop and start the lift department. Probably this was the first lift factory in the Netherlands. About this time, Mr. D. W. Stork has left the company.
During World War I, Belgian soldiers and civilians (refugees) were sheltered at P.M. Duyvis, because Belgium was in war. In order not to participate in the war, they came to the Netherlands where they were under surveillance. During a period of 3 years, 30 Belgian refugees worked in the factory. Despite the difficult times in the twenties and thirties, the company kept growing:
– In the drawing office, female technicians were hired;
– In 1929, P.M. Duyvis Sr. left the company and his son P.M. Duyvis Jr. succeeded him as director;
Widening of the quay
In 1930, it was decided to close a part of the Zaan river in order to make a wider quay. On this new quay, the “Crooked Crane/Kromme Kraantje” was installed and until today, this little crane is significant for the factory and the Zaan region.
In 1957, yet another reconstruction took place and a new office, engineering room and canteen were built. The production area was modernized and expanded with new machines. The successful company celebrated her 75th anniversary at the Krasnapolsky hotel in Amsterdam.
In 1967, Mr. P.M. Duyvis Jr. retired. In this period, the enterprise received the first cocoa-related orders: the revision of cocoa butter presses. With these orders, a lot of knowledge was gathered and in 1975 they decided to develop a cocoa butter press. With some government subsidy, this development succeeded and the first Duyvis cocoa butter press was born. This press was installed at Gerkens in Wormer.
In 1996, a fire destroyed the drawing department, the office, the canteen and a part of the production area. Within a few days, 75 porta cabins were placed in order to continue the production. Because of the help by surrounding companies, the orders could be produced, delivered and installed on site in time.
Due to the fire, a new office was built and the factory got a complete make-over. The new factory hall was built over the old one, where after the old hall was demolished from the inside. During this period, the lift department was sold to Otis.