Wilhelm Overbeck (businessman)

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Wilhelm Overbeck (born May 7, 1798 in Dortmund ; † September 19, 1882 there ) was a German industrial pioneer and businessman.

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Overbeck was born on May 17, 1798 in the third generation in Dortmund . The Overbeck family originally came from Altena , where they held positions as councilors and mayors. After the death of his father Peter Overbeck, Wilhelm Overbeck took over a factory for beer vinegar on Ostenhellweg in Dortmund. The Löwenbrauerei vorm emerged from this business around 1840 . Peter Overbeck AG . Overbeck used the possibilities of early industrialization very early. With the use of steam engines and modern cooling, the Löwen brewery became the brewery with the highest sales in Westphalia.

With the income from the brewing industry, Overbeck acquired shares in the newly emerging Ruhrzechen and founded an ironworks in Hüsten in 1839 together with the Dortmund businessman Friedrich Wilhelm Brökelmann , which later became the Hüsten trade union .

Overbeck also continued to be active in business in Dortmund. Together with a chemist, he set up a stearin and soap factory in Dortmund . The stearin production for the manufacture of candles gave him the nickname “Dortmund King of Lights”.

Wilhelm Overbeck was the first president of the Dortmund Chamber of Commerce until 1876 and became one of the first honorary citizens of the city of Dortmund in 1871 . In the same year he was awarded the title of a Secret Commerce Councilor.



  1. According to DBE / NDB.