Jean-François Boch

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Jean-François Boch (1782-1858)
Headquarters in Mettlach
(contemporary engraving)

Jean-François (Johann Franz) Nikolaus Boch (born March 9, 1782 in Siebenbrunnen , Luxembourg ; † February 9, 1858 ibid) was a third-generation partner and head of the family business "Jean-François Boch" in Simmern .


Jean-François Boch was the son of the entrepreneur Pierre-Joseph Boch (1737-1818) and Antoinette Nothomb (1752-1805).

In 1806 he married Rosalie Buschmann (born January 23, 1785 in Clervaux , † August 27, 1870 in Siebenbrunnen, Luxembourg), the daughter of Gaspard Buschmann, a master tanner in St. Vith since 1752 and one of the founders of the tannery industry in the Ardennes , and Anne-Marie Richard from a founding family of tannery industry in Clervaux.


Boch learned the business in his father's stoneware factory. He left home to start their own business at the age of 27, bought in 1809 the Baroque that of Napoleon Bonaparte secularized Benedictine - Abbey of St. Peter in Mettlach ( district Merzig-Wadern , Saarland ) and established under the company name Boch-Buschmann a state-of-the-art, largely mechanized crockery manufacture. One of the conditions of the government was that Boch should only use hard coal, so that sales of Saarbrücken coal should be cranked. This was important in that no earthenware factory in Europe had been fired with coal until then. So he built the first corresponding furnace.

His patriarchal benevolent attitude towards his workers led him to set up a sick , widow's and orphan's benefit fund in 1819 , which was followed by a savings and loan fund . He set up a “workers casino” and a “reading club” for the intellectual and moral development of his employees.

The company developed excellently and in 1822 the company received the only gold medal in Berlin that was awarded for earthenware at the first Prussian exhibition . There he met the privy councilor Peter Beuth and accompanied him on a trip to England to study the production methods there. There he saw a new kind of turntable that he imported to Europe.

In order to be able to hold its own against the English earthenware industry in the European market, the two competitors Jean-François Boch in Mettlach and Nicolas Villeroy in Wallerfangen near Saarlouis merged their factories into a new company, Villeroy & Boch . The now enlarged company expanded to France (purchase of Utzschneider and Fabry in Saargemünd), Belgium (founding of Keramis near La Caurière) and within Germany to Dresden .

After his sons were accepted into the company management in Mettlach, Boch retired to his father's company in Septfontaines, which he ran until his death in 1858. There he developed a completely new branch of industry with the production of the later so-called Mettlacher Platten (floor tiles).

As the successor to Jean Jacques Madeleine Willmar , he was a member of the Frankfurt National Assembly from January 3, 1849 to May 30, 1849 . He was non-attached, but voted with the Right Center and elected Friedrich Wilhelm IV as Emperor of the Germans. Like the other two Luxembourg deputies, he spoke out in favor of joining a German Empire under Prussian leadership under certain conditions.


In October 2017, the Merzig-Wadern district council renamed the Merzig vocational training center the Jean-François-Boch-Schule with the consent of the Saarland Ministry of Education.


Individual evidence

  1. Werner Lauer, see literature.
  2. Jean François Boch School

Web links

See also