The landscape under the Krkonoše mountains in the north of the Czech Republic is not only scattered with Baroque monuments, large and small, but is also home to a stonemasonry tradition which continues the legacy of the 18th century sculptor Matyáš Bernard Braun, and his followers. The name Wagner is synonymous with this tradition, and first appears in parish registers in the regions of Jaroměřsko and Královévodsko as early as the 18th century.
The stonemason workshop founded 1848 in Dvůr Králové nad Labem in the Hradec Králové region is inextricably linked to the Wagner brothers, sculptors and stonemasons. The two older brothers studied sculpture under renowned German-Czech artist Emanuel Max. While the elder brother František fell in Italy, the younger, Antonín Pavel Wagner (1834–1895), became celebrated for his sculptures in Vienna and contributed to the decorations of the National Theater in Prague. His sons, Jindřich and Jakub (1869–1909), also continued the stonemasonry tradition. Jindřich worked with his famous uncle in Prague and his brother Jiří is recorded as being a master of sculpting in Jaroměř. The sandstone quarry in Ferdinandov (Choustníkovo Hradiště) belonged to the family tradition. All three sons of Jakub Wagner – Václav (1897–1944), Josef (1901–1957) and Antonín (1904–1978) – continued the family tradition as sculptors, Antonín also as an architect (a student of 20th century modernist architect Pavel Janák). For Czech sculpture in the first half of the 20th century, the middle brother, Josef Wagner (1901–1957), was an important and influential figure.