Carl Christoph Uhlenhuth

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Carl Christoph Uhlenhuth (born December 19, 1835 in Paderborn , † April 2, 1910 in Hanover ) was a German railway engineer, line commissioner and inventor of an emergency coupling for railroad cars.


His parents were the master turner and city councilor in Paderborn Carl Friedrich Uhlenhuth (* 1807, † 1876) and his wife Auguste Friederike Uhlenhuth, nee. Bornebusch (* 1805, † 1886). Carl Christoph was the oldest of her five children.

Carl Christoph attended the grammar school of his hometown Paderborn up to the 10th grade (lower secondary school). He then went to his father Carl Friedrich to train as an art turner and passed his journeyman's examination in 1852 at the age of 17. He then attended the provincial trade school in Hagen for three years . Since he passed the final examination of this educational institution “with distinction”, he acquired the right to study, which he did not use immediately. First he worked for three years practically at the Royal Westphalian Railway Company , among other things as a locomotive heater and in the workshops; then he took up his studies at the Royal Commercial Institute in Berlin (the later Royal Commercial Academy and today's Technical University). During his student days he worked on the first two editions of the “ Engineer Pocket Book of the Hut Association ”, which should develop into an important reference work for engineers.

After completing his studies, Uhlenhuth did military service as a one-year volunteer in the VII Army Corps, 13th Division, 26th Infantry Brigade, 2nd Westphalian Landwehr Regiment No. 15, 2nd Battalion (Paderborn) and was confirmed in 1861 his qualification as a Landwehr officer.

In the same year, i.e. 1861, he returned to the service of the Westphalian Railway. Here he was initially employed in Lingen as a foreman, but soon became a foreman and later became a designer and workshop manager. In this position he worked on the calculation and construction of the railway bridge at Corvey on the Weser, the first bridge to be built with the Schwedler girders developed by the civil engineer Johann Wilhelm Schwedler .

He passed the engine driver examination at the end of April 1865.

Carl Christoph Uhlenhuth married Elise Wasmus on August 22, 1865 in Braunschweig (* September 8, 1841 in Braunschweig, † February 23, 1925 in Hanover). The couple had seven children, four of whom reached adulthood:

  1. Carl Uhlenhuth (* 1866, † 1868)
  2. Helene Uhlenhuth (* 1868, † 1917), first wife of the agricultural scientist Emil Krüger
  3. Paul Theodor Uhlenhuth , (born January 7, 1870 in Hanover; † December 13, 1957 in Freiburg im Breisgau), bacteriologist and hygienist, married to Martha von Klüfer since 1899
  4. Adele Uhlenhuth (* 1871, † 1949), wife of Max Knoevenagel (a son of Albert Knoevenagel )
  5. Lisbeth Uhlenhuth (* 1873, † 1874)
  6. Walter Uhlenhuth (* 1876, † 1880)
  7. Emmy Uhlenhuth, (* 1880, † 1939), second wife of the agricultural scientist Emil Krüger

During the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 , Uhlenhuth was in charge of the locomotive service for the transport of troops in his district.

After the annexation of the Kingdom of Hanover by Prussia in 1866 , Uhlenhuth was transferred to the Royal Railway Directorate in Hanover in 1868 , where he initially worked as a representative of the chief engineer. From 1869 to 1871 he was then Royal Railway Engine Master and Head of Machine Inspection.

During the Franco-German War of 1870/71 , he was particularly committed to the rapid transport of German troop transports. In recognition of this, he was awarded the Red Eagle Order IV class. Due to the technical experience he was able to gain during this war, he was later appointed line commissioner of the line commission "A" in Hanover. He held this office for several years. (The Line Commission of Line A was responsible for the Berlin - Hanover - Cologne - Bingerbrück - Neunkirchen (Saar) line ).

In 1871 he resigned from the civil service in order to work first as chief engineer at the Hanover-Altenbekener Eisenbahn-Gesellschaft in Hanover and later in the same capacity at the Magdeburg-Halberstädter Eisenbahngesellschaft in Halberstadt . When this was nationalized in 1881, Uhlenhuth returned to the civil service. He then worked for the Royal Railway Directorate in Magdeburg, where he was initially head of the materials office and later head of the mechanical engineering office. On April 1, 1883, Uhlenhuth was reassigned to the Royal Railway Directorate in Hanover, as railway director. In 1895 Uhlenhuth was appointed a secret building officer.

Uhlenhuth developed, among other things, a safety coupling for railway wagons, which has been in use for decades by many national and international railway companies. Such safety or emergency couplings ensure protection against separation of the vehicles if the main coupling becomes damaged.

During his time in Halberstadt (1876–80), Carl Christoph Uhlenhuth was a city councilor there. From 1872 to 1874 he was chairman of the Hanover District Association of the Association of German Engineers (VDI); In 1874 he was also a board member of the whole association. On the occasion of his 70th birthday in 1905, he was made an honorary member of the Hanover District Association of the VDI.

From 1894 to 1900 Uhlenhuth was part of the editorial sub-committee for the section “Technical Affairs of the Association of German Railway Administrations” of the specialist journal “Organ for the Progress of the Railway System”.

Uhlenhuth took part in the meetings of the Technical Committee of the Association of German Railway Administrations from February 1895 to February 1896.

He retired in 1902 at the age of 67.

He died on April 2, 1910 after a brief illness of pneumonia in Hanover.


In the early 1870s, Uhlenhuth was awarded the Red Eagle Order IV class. In 1898 he was awarded the Crown Order III. Class, 1900 the Knight's Cross of Honor 1st Class of the Grand Ducal Oldenburg House and Merit Order, 1901 the China Memorial Coin made of steel (“in recognition of his merit for the expedition to China ”) and in 1902 the Red Eagle Order III. Class with a bow. In 1905 he was made an honorary member of the Hanover District Association of the Association of German Engineers (VDI).


  • L. Croon, (VDI), in: News sheet for technical-economic associations, No. 11, Hanover, November 1, 1955, 6th year, "The honorary members of the Hanover District Association of the VDI - 5th Carl Uhlenhuth", p. 81
  • Schäfer (secret construction officer), obituary: "Carl Christoph Uhlenhuth †", in: Organ for the progress of the railway system, New Series, XLVII. Volume, issue 12, issue 1910, pp. 121/122
  • A. Nachtweh, ​​“Secret Building Councilor a. D. Carl Uhlenhuth † “, in: Communications of the Association of Technical and Scientific Associations No. 16, 7th year, Hanover, April 19, 1910, pp. 87/88

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Steinbiß: Couplings. In: Victor von Röll (Hrsg.): Enzyklopädie des Eisenbahnwesens (= Enzyklopädie des Eisenbahnwesens. Volume 7). Urban & Schwarzenberg, Vienna 1915, pp. 22–39. ( online )
  2. ^ Alfred Birk: emergency couplings. In: Otto Lueger (Hrsg.): Lexicon of the entire technology and its auxiliary sciences (= Lexicon of the entire technology and its auxiliary sciences. Volume 6). Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, Leipzig 1908, pp. 678-679. ( online )
  3. ^ Marie-Luise Heuser , Wolfgang König : Tabular compilations on the history of the VDI . In: Karl-Heinz Ludwig (Ed.): Technology, Engineers and Society - History of the Association of German Engineers 1856–1981 . VDI-Verlag, Düsseldorf 1981, ISBN 3-18-400510-0 , p. 572 .