Hermann Röchling

Hermann Röchling was born in Saarbrücken in 1872. He studied National Economy, Mining and Metallurgy in Heidelberg. In 1895 his father put him in charge of a blast furnace in the Völklingen Ironworks. He broadened his education in the USA and Scandinavia. In 1905 Herman Röchling became the Managing Director of the Völklingen Ironworks whereupon he had an essential impact on the technological development of the Ironworks. As early as 1936 Hermann Röchling put the company in the service of the arms building and war policy of the Third Reich. Workforce shortage led to the closure of the ironworks in September 1939. At the end of 1939 production was running again. In October 1940 four blast furnaces were in operation. Production was switched to war materials: gun barrels, grenades and aeroplane parts. From the early summer of 1940 forced labourers and prisoners of war were used in the Röchling works. From 1942 Hermann Röchling belonged to the High Command of the National Socialist war economy. He was one of Adolf Hitler’s greatest admirers and in his book 'Haltet die Saar' (Maintain the Saar) he praised his taking over of power and promoted it on the Saar with great enthusiasm and energy.

 

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