Alfred Eppler

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Alfred Eppler (born July 16, 1867 in Birkenfeld near Idar-Oberstein , † February 10, 1923 in Krefeld ) was a German mineralogist .


Eppler initially worked as a primary school teacher in the service of the Grand Ducal Government of the Principality of Birkenfeld . After financial support from a friend and a special permit because he did not have a high school diploma , he began studying mineralogy in Jena in 1894 . His dissertation “Contributions to the Relationship between the Crystal and its Chemical Composition” was awarded summa cum laude .

1903 moved Eppler after Krefeld to a position as a senior teacher at the High School for Girls on the western wall and a teacher at the Municipal Lyceum ( high school ) to compete, where he taught mathematics, science and education.

As a well-known connoisseur of jewelery and precious stones, Eppler organized an exhibition for the Kaiser Wilhelm Museum in 1906 on the "Precious and semi-precious stone industry in Idar-Oberstein" and in 1909 another one on the subject of "Real gemstones and forgeries".

Due to his great commitment, the head of the municipal high school for girls applied for Eppler's appointment as professor, but this was refused to him despite the approval of the city administration. In 1909, he was also stripped of the title of academically trained senior teacher because he had not passed a state examination.

From 1907 to 1915 he was a member of the extended board of trustees of the Natural Science Museum in Krefeld and helped build a gemstone collection. In order to expand this collection, Eppler also donated his own collection of 100 raw and cut gemstones to the museum in 1910. A year later, the collection was given a new exhibition space in the newly opened Natural Science Museum in Haus Heyes. The great bombing raid on 21/22 June 1943 destroyed most of the collection.

With the benevolent approval of the city administration, Eppler tried to set up an industrial diamond grinding shop in Krefeld at the beginning of the 20th century . The diamond deposit discovered in 1908 in the colony of German South West Africa proved to be advantageous . As early as 1913, the mine produced over 1 million carats of rough diamonds. In cooperation with the Idar-Oberstein company Ernst Lorenz, a training workshop for diamond grinders was set up, and Eppler himself took over the technical training.

He also tried to build up a trade in colored stones and suggested the establishment of the "Krefeld Gemstone Industry". Eppler was also a founding member of the "Association of German Gemstone Friends" founded on January 14, 1914, and worked there on the board as managing director. The first members of the association included the mayor at the time, Johannes Johansen, and the secret commercial councilor Moritz de Greiff, who headed the association until his death in 1920.

The establishment of the diamond cutters threatened to fail at the beginning due to the insufficient capacity of the school and the lack of workshops to take on the trainees. However, it is thanks to Eppler's tireless efforts that six apprentices in the first training course successfully passed their final exams in 1916, three of which were taken on in the Ernst Lorenz grinding shop. When the colony of German South West Africa was lost with the defeat of Germany in World War I , the status of the diamond cutting school became even more difficult and finally in 1919 the admission of new apprentices had to be stopped.

The return to school work, from which Eppler had been on leave up to this point, prevented a serious illness from arteriosclerosis of the heart. However, he resisted a transfer to retirement because he would have suffered high wage losses due to a lack of pension deposits. After tough negotiations with the education authority, he was finally appointed to the teaching post with retroactive effect from April 1, 1920 and retired on April 1, 1921.

Eppler died of heart disease two years later on February 10, 1923, leaving no successor to continue his training at the diamond cutter school. Existing grinding shops only provided training in their companies according to their own needs.

Eppler's son Wilhelm Friedrich also studied mineralogy at the Universities of Bonn and Hamburg and received his doctorate with his dissertation "On the optical behavior, density and changes in state of zircon", which was published in 1926.

Publications and works

  • 1898 Contributions to the relationship between the crystal and its chemical constituents. The eutropic ranks of the calcium strontium baryum group. , Diploma thesis / dissertation, W. Engelmann Verlag, Leipzig
  • 1909 Real gemstones and forgeries , Crefeld: Kaiser Wilhelm Museum
  • approx. 1910 The Werkdorf a suggestion for the German Werkbund , Crefeld
  • 1910 Housekeeping for the women's school classes at the Lyceum
  • 1910 Exercise book for the visual representation of human foods in their chemical composition, their nutritional values ​​and their nutritional value , Leipzig, Berlin, BG Teubner
  • 1910 Chemistry and Mineralogy for secondary schools for girls and higher education institutions 1 , together with Rudolf Schettler, Quelle & Meyer Verlag, Leipzig
  • 1911 Idar-Oberstein - The home of the German jewelry industry
  • 1912 food science
  • 1912 Guide to the calligraphy school based on the form lessons , Gustav Hohns Verlag, Crefeld
  • 1912 The precious stones and the precious stone industry , Leipzig - Berlin: Teubner, BG
  • 1912 The jewelery and precious stones as the second volume in the commercial material science series , together with Paul Krais, Stuttgart
  • 1914 Exhibition of donations from "Vaterlandsdanks 1914" , Crefeld: Kaiser Wilhelm Museum
  • 1915 Mineralogy for the lower and middle classes of high schools , together with Rudolf Schettler, Quelle & Meyer Verlag, Leipzig
  • 1917 The diamond in German trade and on the world market , Gustav Hohns Verlag, Crefeld
  • 1917 Housekeeping: nutrition, clothing, ... and housekeeping; from economics and life studies, health education and child care; for use in women's schools, technical seminars and other teacher training institutions as well as domestic and advanced training schools
  • 1918 The future of the German gemstone industry under consideration. d. Transitional economy, Gustav Hohns Verlag, Crefeld
  • 1922 Chemistry textbook with an introduction to mineralogy and geology for secondary schools, lyceums, higher girls' schools and related institutions (3rd edition), together with Rudolf Schettler, Quelle & Meyer Verlag, Leipzig

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. dilibri Rhineland-Palatinate - digitized edition of the sheets for Mosel, Hochwald and Hunsrück, 1st year 1910/11, No. 5 , No. 6 (continued) , No. 7 (continued) and No. 8 (conclusion)
  2. a b catalog of the University of Hamburg