Edgar Engelhard

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Engelhard 1962

Edgar Engelhard (born May 5, 1917 in Hamburg ; † June 6, 1979 there ) was a German politician of the FDP . From 1953 to 1966 he was Senator of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.

Life and work

In his childhood and youth, Engelhard was active in the Bündische Jugend . After this was dissolved by the National Socialists , he reorganized an alliance group in Hamburg, which from then on met secretly. Denounced by a neighbor to the Gestapo in January 1937 , he was arrested and charged with offenses against the treachery law . During the trial he was sent to a concentration camp . However, his lawyer managed to get Engelhard's release from the Hamburg Gestapo chief Bruno Linienbach.

After completing school, Engelhard completed an apprenticeship as an export merchant and then worked in foreign trade and as a merchant in Central and South America and the USA until 1938.

He was a soldier in World War II . Initially deployed on the Western Front, he was transferred to part of the Romanian Army on the Eastern Front because of critical comments and finally to the Liaison Staff of the German Wehrmacht in Zagreb . During the war he refused to become an officer a total of eight times , and after the war he justified this with his opposition to the regime. In November 1944, his appointment as an officer candidate was finally ordered.

At the end of the war, Engelhard escaped from the threatened Soviet captivity and made his way to Hamburg. There he became an authorized officer of an overseas company and co-owner of a newly founded shipping company. When he was elected Senator and 2nd Mayor in 1953, he gave up these private activities. After leaving the Senate in 1966, he worked as a management consultant.

He was involved in the “Committee of Former Political Prisoners”, which in 1947 became the Association of Those Persecuted by the Nazi Regime (VVN). On September 21, 1950, he left the VVN because of the growing communist influence there. In order to make it clear that he did not give up his left-liberal, pacifist political views with this exit, he joined the German Peace Society on October 11, 1950 .

Engelhard was married. He was awarded the Mayor Stolten Medal in 1974. The Edgar-Engelhard-Kai in Altona-Altstadt is named after him. His estate was administered by the later Hamburg FDP chairman Robert Vogel .

Political party

At the end of 1945, Engelhard was promoted by Alfred Johann Levy and Willy Max Rademacher for the “Party of Free Democrats”, as the FDP in Hamburg called itself at that time. Since the beginning of his political activity he saw himself on the left wing of the party. On July 30, 1946, he succeeded Hans Ludwig Waiblinger as chairman of the Young Democrats in Hamburg. At the party congress of the FDP zone association for the British zone in Bielefeld in June 1947 , Engelhard was also to be elected to represent the young democrats in the zone committee, but was defeated by Erich Mende . In October 1947 he was elected to the state board of the Hamburg FDP and a short time later as a board member of the World League of Young Liberals . In November 1947 he was finally elected deputy chairman of the Young Democrats in the Western Zones .

When the electoral alliance for the 1949 citizenship election was formed with the CDU and the German Conservative Party , he was elected chairman with equal rights alongside the previous chairman of the former Father City Association, Paul de Chapeaurouge . When the CDU, FDP and DKP could not agree on a common parliamentary group after the election, the VBH also formally dissolved. At the state party congress on January 20, 1951, he published the call for a liberal collection , which opposed the plans of the state associations of North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and Hesse to make the FDP a party of the national collection. Harald Abatz , Emmy Beckmann , Lieselotte Anders , Anton Leser and Max Dibbern were co-signers . In the appeal, Engelhard defines the FDP as a party of the center and the balance and criticizes the way to the right of the above-mentioned state associations. He closes with the invitation to join the party and the words:

“In keeping with the tradition of Curt Platen and Carl Petersen .
For social and cultural progress.
For individual and economic freedom.
For a clear rejection of any form of new nationalism.
For a real liberal renaissance. "

The following day he was defeated in the election for deputy state chairman with 113 votes to 156 against Johannes Büll and was re-elected as an assessor. After the death of the second deputy Wilhelm H. Lindemann on July 3, 1952, he was finally elected party vice .

When the Hamburg Block was founded on September 28, 1953, Engelhard was one of its three equal chairmen alongside Erik Blumenfeld and Erwin Jacobi . He held this office until November 26, 1954, when Mayor Kurt Sieveking was elected sole HB chairman. Engelhard was its deputy chairman until the bloc was dissolved in the run-up to the 1957 state elections. From 1958 to 1966 he was state chairman of the FDP in Hamburg. In 1961 he ran in vain for the office of deputy FDP federal chairman.


Engelhard belonged to the Hamburg citizenship without interruption from 1946 to 1974 . To this day, he is the FDP member of parliament with the longest term in office. At his request, the citizenship decided on November 27, 1946 to rename Niendorfer Strasse in Eppendorf to Geschwister-Scholl-Strasse . Initially Parliamentary Managing Director, he was chairman of the FDP parliamentary group from 1949 to 1953. With the formation of the Hamburg bloc parliamentary group on September 29, 1953 in the run-up to the state elections, Engelhard became its deputy group chairman for the rest of the electoral term.

Public offices

After the electoral success of the Hamburg bloc , Engelhard was elected to the Hamburg Senate on December 2, 1953 . This elected him second mayor and sent him to the prison authorities as well as the sports department and the district administration office. From December 4, 1953, he was also a member of the Senate Commission for the Administration of Justice (there was no judicial authority yet). In 1956, after the resignation of the previous police senator Josef von Fisenne, he also assumed responsibility for the police authority for a few months . From 1957 - now in a social-liberal coalition - he was sent to the Department of Economics and Transport and continued to be sent to the Sports Department ; he was also a member of the Justice Commission for a while. After the decision of the FDP state party conference to end the coalition with the SPD , which had received 59% of the votes in the previous state election, he resigned from the Senate on April 27, 1966, and thus also from the office of Second Mayor.

See also

Individual evidence

  1. a b Edgar Engelhard - Munzinger biography. Retrieved December 23, 2018 .
  2. This is what he said in a letter to the Political Criminal Police of July 20, 1945.
  3. So z. B. in a letter to the state board of June 14, 1946, Archive of Liberalism , inventory FDP-Hamburg, 30383/5.
  4. Brauers, p. 488.


  • Munzinger Archive International Biographical Archive 27/1979 from June 25, 1979.
  • Christof Brauers: The FDP in Hamburg 1945 to 1953. Start as a bourgeois left party , Martin Meidenbauer Verlagbuchhandlung, Munich 2007, ISBN 978-3-89975-569-5 .
  • Leif Schrader et al .: 60 years of political liberalism in Hamburg , commemorative publication for the 60th anniversary of the FDP Hamburg, Hamburg 2005.
  • Helmut Stubbe da Luz : Engelhard, Edgar . In: Franklin Kopitzsch, Dirk Brietzke (Hrsg.): Hamburgische Biographie . tape 5 . Wallstein, Göttingen 2010, ISBN 978-3-8353-0640-0 , p. 105-107 .

Web links

Commons : Edgar Engelhard  - Collection of images, videos and audio files