Emil Mayrisch

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Emil Mayrisch; Portrait of Theo van Rysselberghe .

Emil Mayrisch , also Émile Mayrisch (born October 10, 1862 in Eich , Luxembourg ; † March 5, 1928 in Chalons-sur-Marne , France ) was a Luxembourg steel industrialist and president of the board of directors of ARBED . He was and is in many cases still considered an early representative of European integration .

Origin and education

Emil Mayrisch's father was a doctor, his mother belonged to the Luxembourg industrialist family Metz. The father died before Emil came of age. Emil studied metallurgy from 1882 to 1886 at the Royal Technical University of Aachen (today RWTH Aachen University ), but did not complete his studies because he did not take the diploma examination. Instead, he took a job in the company of his great-uncle Norbert Metz .

Engineer and industrialist

His first job was to participate in the planning and commissioning of the Dudelange steelworks , of which he became director in 1897. He rose to the management of the company and merged his company Acieries Metz in 1911 to Acieries Réunies Burbach Eich Dudelange (ARBED) . Emil Mayrisch, like his wife Aline de Saint Hubert, was very politically committed, a sponsor of many associations and the publisher of several Luxembourg newspapers. He represented liberal politics, and unlike his uncle Norbert Metz, he neither won a seat in parliament nor did he take part in government.

After the First World War , German capital had to withdraw from Luxembourg, which also benefited Arbed, which was primarily determined by Belgian-Luxembourg capital. Under Mayrisch's leadership, it also expanded to Germany and bought, among other things, the Eschweiler Bergwerksverein (EBV) . That is why Mayrisch later gave its name to the Emil Mayrisch mine of the EBV in Siersdorf . His commitment to the Aachen area was rewarded by his alma mater in 1926 when he was awarded an honorary doctorate from RWTH Aachen University, with which he was finally able to iron out his academic mistake of 1886.

Economic Politician (1920s)

The First World War and its aftermath were also devastating for the steel industry. Mayrisch sought and found contact with German, French and Belgian industrialists and together with them founded the International Crude Steel Community, also known as the International Steel Cartel , which he chaired until his death. According to a widespread opinion, this association was the godfather of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC, French: CECA ), which was founded in 1951 , the aim of which was to work together to strengthen mutual economic dependencies and thus the likelihood of future wars between them States to decrease. In 1926 Mayrisch founded the Franco-German Study Committee , which was also called the Mayrisch Committee .

Mayrisch was president of the Union panuropéenne luxembourgeoise in his country.

Death and aftermath

Gravesite of Emil Mayrisch and his wife Alina in Colpach, Luxembourg

On March 5, 1928, Mayrisch was killed in a car accident. His widow Aline Mayrisch continued his above-mentioned efforts to bring about Franco-German rapprochement by inviting European intellectuals such as Ernst Robert Curtius and André Gide to appropriate conferences in Colpach , Luxembourg . In addition, she supported many exiled German writers during the time of the Third Reich, without her name being made public. B. Annette Kolb . From 1937 onwards it largely financed the magazine Maß und Wert, published by Thomas Mann .

Criticism of Mayrisch's view as a committed "European"

Mayrisch's unifying work is known as a myth. As a cartel initiator, Mayrisch oriented himself primarily towards his own economic interests and neither followed “theories of reconciliation that unites peoples”, nor did he formulate “forward-thinking European ideas”. His cartel project was a "transnational integration [...] far away"; it was about economic vested interests and the exclusive control of traditional markets. The International Crude Steel Community is therefore only an "alleged 'forerunner' of a united Europe", but as such it is still "extolled today".

Individual evidence

  1. Charles Barthel: The hour of Mr. Mayrisch. On the participation of the Luxembourg steel industrialist in the economic détente in Europe 1925/26. In: Gallery. Revue culturelle et pedagogique. Volume 25 (2007), H. 3., pp. 403, 478.
  2. A Royal Prussian University. “Decision year” 1879. RATH Aachen, accessed on August 13, 2014 (University history 1870–1918).
  3. ^ Anne-Marie Saint-Gille: La “Pan-Europe”. Un débat des idées dans l'entre-deux-gueress. PUF, Paris-Sorbonne 2003, p. 144.
  4. Charles Barthel: The hour of Mr. Mayrisch. On the participation of the Luxembourg steel industrialist in the economic détente in Europe 1925/26 . In: Gallery. Revue culturelle et pedagogique . 25th year, no. 3 , 2007, p. 478 .


Web links

Commons : Émile Mayrisch  - Collection of images, videos and audio files