While Bentz will be more useful for players aiming for a Cultural Victory, the extra trade route will benefit any player.
The best – and most profitable – ideas are usually simple. And even a housewife can have a simple idea … and get rich.
Born January 1873 in Dresden, Amalie Auguste Melitta Lisbscher, like most young women, looked to change her name, and did so when she married Johannes Emil Hugo Bentz. Also like most young women of the time, she stayed home, caring for two sons, a daughter, and Hugo of course. One of her tedious daily chores was making the coffee that kept their lives bearable. At the time, coffee – that indispensable fuel for civilization – was prepared with a complicated espresso type percolator; moreover, the process left loose grounds in the bitter brew.
One day, tired of all this, Melitta used a nail to poke holes in the bottom of a brass cup and then lined it with a sheet of blotting paper from her son’s school notebook. And made coffee. The result was outstanding, a more aromatic and flavorful cup without grounds, preparation was quick and simple, and cleanup was relegated to just tossing away the blotting paper. In June 1908 she obtained a patent for her “invention” and in December she launched a company for the sale of coffee filters with a starting capital of 72 pfenning.
Although interrupted by the First World War, by 1928 the company had recovered and demand was so high that its 80 employees worked double-shifts. The following year the production facilities of the growing company were transferred to Minden. Despite the devastation of the Second World War and requisition of the factory by occupying Allied troops, in 1948 it resumed production of coffee filters. By 1950, annual international sales were in the neighborhood of 4.5 million Deutschemarks … and growing.
Having survived two world wars and become quite wealthy – Melitta Bentz died in June of that year.