Emil Rathenau

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Emil Rathenau
Emil Rathenau.jpg
Dr. Emil M. Rathenau, 1883
Born11 December 1838
Died20 June 1915 (1915-06-21) (aged 76)
Occupation Entrepreneur
Spouse(s)Mathilde Nachmann
Children Walther Rathenau
Erich Rathenau
Jenny Apolant
Parent(s) Moritz Rathenau

Emil Moritz Rathenau (11 December 1838 20 June 1915) was a German entrepreneur, industrialist, mechanical engineer. He was a leading figure in the early European electrical industry.

Germany Federal parliamentary republic in central-western Europe

Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north and the Alps, Lake Constance and the High Rhine to the south. It borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, and Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands to the west.

Electricity Physical phenomena associated with the presence and flow of electric charge

Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion of matter that has a property of electric charge. In early days, electricity was considered as being unrelated to magnetism. Later on, many experimental results and the development of Maxwell's equations indicated that both electricity and magnetism are from a single phenomenon: electromagnetism. Various common phenomena are related to electricity, including lightning, static electricity, electric heating, electric discharges and many others.

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Biography

Rathenau was born in Berlin, into a wealthy Jewish merchant family based on Viktoriastrasse by the Tiergarten, an old Jewish quarter of the city. Henriette Herz and Rahel Varnhagen could describe Friedrich von Genz, and the philosopher, Schiller, both known to his grandparents and father Moritz Rathenau.

Berlin Capital of Germany

Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,748,148 (2018) inhabitants make it the second most populous city proper of the European Union after London. The city is one of Germany's 16 federal states. It is surrounded by the state of Brandenburg, and contiguous with Potsdam, Brandenburg's capital. The two cities are at the center of the Berlin-Brandenburg capital region, which is, with about six million inhabitants and an area of more than 30,000 km², Germany's third-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr and Rhine-Main regions.

In 1865, Rathenau was a partner in a factory, during which time (while traveling abroad) he recognized the possibilities of the then newly emerging electrical technology. The dramatic victory over France in the Franco-Prussian War was ensued by a collapse, prompting Rathenau to sell up in 1873.

A Grand Tour of Central and Eastern Europe took him to Vienna Science Exhibition, Philadelphia, and Paris. In 1881, he attended the International Exposition of Electricity, Paris and saw Thomas Alva Edison's invention of the light bulb for the first time. [1] Realizing the potential of electricity, he acquired the rights to manufacture products based on Edison's patents with the help of a bank group. By 1907 AEG had become the largest commercial company in the world. The bank advised him to partner with his competitor Werner von Siemens. Since both were followers of the idea of monopoly they signed a contract of trust (monopoly) where Siemens was producing and selling generators and Rathenau built power stations and laid cables. In 1883 he founded the "German Edison Corporation for Applied Electricity" (Deutsche Edison-Gesellschaft für angewandte Elektrizität), which in 1887 changed into the Allgemeine Elektrizitäts-Gesellschaft (General Electricity Incorporated) abbreviated AEG.

Werner von Siemens German inventor and industrialist

Ernst Werner Siemens was a German electrical engineer, inventor and industrialist. Siemens's name has been adopted as the SI unit of electrical conductance, the siemens. He was also the founder of the electrical and telecommunications company Siemens.

AEG 1883-1996 electrical equipment and aircraft manufacturer of Germany

Allgemeine Elektricitäts-Gesellschaft AG (AEG) was a German producer of electrical equipment founded as the Deutsche Edison-Gesellschaft für angewandte Elektricität in 1883 in Berlin by Emil Rathenau. After World War II its headquarters was relocated to Frankfurt am Main.

On 19 February 1884 Rathenau and the magistrate of Berlin signed an agreement on the electrification of the city. [1] While he financed the deal, Rathenau's private company was also permitted to use public streets to lay electricity lines. The city received 10% of the income for giving its authorization. Peter Becker, a German energy expert has called this Germany's first private-public partnership and after the first power station went online to illuminate the 'Gendarmenmarkt' at night. The Berlin model became influential throughout the German Empire. [1]

In 1903, Rathenau was appointed general manager of AEG. Together with his competitor and business partner, they formed the Telefunken Gesellschaft für drahtlose Telegraphie mbH. He held numerous positions on the supervisory board of Berliner Handels-Gesellschaft und der Elektrizitäts AG vorm. W. Lahmeyer & Co.

Rathenau was married in 1866 to Mathilde Nachmann, daughter of a Frankfurt banker. One of his sons was Walther Rathenau, an industrialist, politician, and progressive economist who served as German Foreign Minister during the Weimar Republic, and was assassinated in Berlin in June 1922 by the right-wing terrorist group Organisation Consul. He had another son named Erich Rathenau and a daughter Edith.

Frankfurt Place in Hesse, Germany

Frankfurt is a metropolis and the largest city of the German federal state of Hesse, and its 746,878 (2017) inhabitants make it the fifth-largest city of Germany after Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, and Cologne. On the River Main, it forms a continuous conurbation with the neighbouring city of Offenbach am Main, and its urban area has a population of 2.3 million. The city is at the centre of the larger Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region, which has a population of 5.5 million and is Germany's second-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr Region. Since the enlargement of the European Union in 2013, the geographic centre of the EU is about 40 km (25 mi) to the east of Frankfurt's central business district. Like France and Franconia, the city is named after the Franks. Frankfurt is the largest city in the Rhine Franconian dialect area.

Walther Rathenau German businessman and politician

Walther Rathenau was a German industrialist, banker, intellectual, and politician, who served as German Foreign Minister during the Weimar Republic.

Weimar Republic Germany state in the years 1918/1919–1933

The Weimar Republic is an unofficial historical designation for the German state from 1918 to 1933. The name derives from the city of Weimar, where its constitutional assembly first took place. The official name of the republic remained Deutsches Reich unchanged from 1871, because of the German tradition of substates. Although commonly translated as ’German Empire’, the word Reich here better translates as ’realm’, in that the term does not have monarchical connotations in itself. The Reich was changed from a constitutional monarchy into a republic. In English, the country was usually known simply as Germany.

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References

  1. 1 2 3 Florian Opitz (27 October 2014). "Akte D (3) - Die Macht der Stromkonzerne". Das Erste (in German). ARD. Archived from the original on 29 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.

Further reading