Alfried Felix Alwyn Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, "The Canon King"
|Birthplace:||Villa Hügel, Essen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany|
|Death:||Died in Essen, Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany|
|Place of Burial:||Meysenburg Friedhof|
Son of Gustav Georg Friedrich Maria Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach and Bertha Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach
|Occupation:||Inhaber der Krupp-Werke|
|Managed by:||Timo Antero Westerlund|
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About Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach
Alfried Krupp, the son of Gustav Krupp, was born in Essen, Germany, on 13th August, 1907. After studying engineering in Munich and Berlin he joined his father's company, Friedrich Krupp AG, that by the First World War was Germany's largest armaments company.
Krupp and his father were initially hostile to the Nazi Party. However, in 1930 they were persuaded by Hjalmar Schacht that Adolf Hitler would destroy the trade unions and the political left in Germany. Schacht also pointed out that a Hitler government would considerably increase expenditure on armaments. In 1933 Krupp joined the Schutzstaffel (SS).
As a result of the terms of the Versailles Treaty the Krupp family had been forced to become producers of agricultural machinery after the First World War. However, in 1933, Krupp factories began producing tanks in what was officially part of the Agricultural Tractor Scheme. They also built submarines in Holland and new weapons were developed and tested in Sweden.
During the Second World War Krupp ensured that a continuous supply of his firm's tanks, munitions and armaments reached the German Army. He was also responsible for moving factories from occupied countries back to Germany where they were rebuilt by the Krupp company.
Krupp also built factories in German occupied countries and used the labour of over 100,000 inmates of concentration camps. This included a fuse factory inside Auschwitz. Inmates were also moved to Silesia to build a howitzer factory. It is estimated that around 70,000 of those working for Krupp died as a result of the methods employed by the guards of the camps.
In 1943 Adolf Hitler appointed Krupp as Minister of the War Economy. Later that year the SS gave him permission to employ 45,000 Russian civilians as forced labour in his steel factories as well as 120,000 prisoners of war in his coalmines.
Arrested by the Canadian Army in 1945 Alfried Krupp was tried as a war criminal at Nuremberg. He was accused of plundering occupied territories and being responsible for the barbaric treatment of prisoners of war and concentration camp inmates. Documents showed that Krupp initiated the request for slave labour and signed detailed contracts with the SS, giving them responsibility for inflicting punishment on the workers.
Krupp was eventually found guilty of being a major war criminal and sentenced to twelve years in prison and had all his wealth and property confiscated. Convicted and imprisoned with him were nine members of the Friedrich Krupp AG board of directors. However, Gustav Krupp, the former head of the company, was considered too old to stand trial and was released from custody.
By 1950 the United States was involved in fighting the Cold War. In June of that year, North Korean troops invaded South Korea. It was believed that German steel was needed for armaments for the Korean War and in October, John J. McCloy, the high commissioner in American occupied Germany, lifted the 11 million ton limitation on German steel production. McCloy also began pardoning German industrialists who had been convicted at Nuremberg. This included Fritz Ter Meer, the senior executive of I. G. Farben, the company that produced Zyklon B poison for the gas chambers. He was also Hitler's Commissioner of for Armament and War Production for the chemical industry during the war.
McCloy was also concerned about the increasing power of the left-wing, anti-rearmament, Social Democratic Party (SDP). The popularity of the conservative government led by Konrad Adenauer was in decline and a public opinion poll in 1950 showed it only had 24% of the vote, while support for the SDP had risen to 40%. On 5th December, 1950, Adenauer wrote McCloy a letter urging clemency for Krupp. Hermann Abs, one of Hitler's personal bankers, who surprisingly was never tried as a war criminal at Nuremberg, also began campaigning for the release of German industrialists in prison.
In January, 1951, John J. McCloy announced that Alfried Krupp and eight members of his board of directors who had been convicted with him, were to be released. His property, valued at around 45 million, and his numerous companies were also restored to him.
Others that McCloy decided to free included Friedrich Flick, one of the main financial supporters of Adolf Hitler and the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP). During the Second World War Flick became extremely wealthy by using 48,000 slave labourers from SS concentration camps in his various industrial enterprises. It is estimated that 80 per cent of these workers died as a result of the way they were treated during the war. His property was restored to him and like Krupp became one of the richest men in Germany.
McCloy's decision was very controversial. Eleanor Roosevelt wrote to McCloy to ask: "Why are we freeing so many Nazis? The Washington Post published a Herb Block cartoon depicting a smiling McCloy opening Krupp's cell door, while in the background Joseph Stalin is shown taking a photograph of the event. Telford Taylor, who took part in the prosecution of the Nazi war criminals wrote: "Wittingly or not, Mr. McCloy has dealt a blow to the principles of international law and concepts of humanity for which we fought the war."
Rumours began circulating that McCloy had been bribed by the Krupp's American lawyer, Earl J. Carroll. According to one magazine: "The terms of Carroll's employment were simple. He was to get Krupp out of prison and get his property restored. The fee was to be 5 per cent of everything he could recover. Carroll got Krupp out and his fortune returned, receiving for his five-year job a fee of, roughly, $25 million."
McCloy rejected these claims and told the journalist, William Manchester: "There's not a goddamn word of truth in the charge that Krupp's release was inspired by the outbreak of the Korean War. No lawyer told me what to do, and it wasn't political. It was a matter of my conscience."
Within a few years of his release Krupp's company was the 12th largest corporation in the world. Alfried Krupp died in Essen, West Germany, on 30th July, 1967.
Alfried Felix Alwyn Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach (13 August 1907 – 30 July 1967), often referred to as Alfried Krupp, was a convicted war criminal, an industrialist, a competitor in Olympic yacht races and a member of the Krupp family, which has been prominent in Germany since the early 19th century.
The family company, known formally as Friedrich Krupp AG Hoesch-Krupp, was a key supplier of weapons and materiel to the Nazi regime and the Wehrmacht during World War II. In 1943, Krupp became sole proprietor of the company, following the Lex Krupp ("Krupp Law") decreed by Adolf Hitler. Krupp's wartime employment of slave labor, resulted in the "Krupp Trial" of 1947–1948, following which he served three years in prison.
At Alfried Krupp's behest, after his death in 1967, control of the Krupp company passed to the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation, a philanthropic organisation.
Family and early life
Krupp's mother, Bertha Krupp, inherited the company in 1902 at the age of 16 when her father, Friedrich Krupp, committed suicide. In October 1906, Bertha married Krupp's father, Gustav von Bohlen und Halbach, a German diplomat and member of the nobility, who subsequently became known as Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach.
Alfried Krupp attended grammar school, after which he trained at Krupp company workshops and studied metallurgy at technical universities in Munich, Berlin and Aachen.
The company profited significantly from the German re-armament of the 1920s and 1930s. Gustav Krupp, in spite of his initial opposition to the Nazi Party, made significant personal donations to it, before the 1933 election, because he saw advantages for the company in the Nazis' militarism and opposition to independent trade unions.
Krupp received a Diplomingenieur (Master of Engineering) from the Aachener Technische Hochschule in 1934, with the acceptance of a thesis on melting steel in vacuums.
During the Berlin Olympics of 1936, Krupp participated in 8 Meter Class sailing and won a bronze medal.
In 1936, after undergoing financial training at the Dresdner Bank, Krupp joined the family company. The following year he married Anneliese Lampert, née Bahr (1909–1998)and a son, Arndt von Bohlen und Halbach, was born in 1938. His family disapproved, and their pressure may have influenced the divorce that followed soon afterwards.
World War II
During World War II, the company's profits increased and it gained control of factories in German-occupied Europe.
Alfried Krupp became more active in controlling the company as his father's health declined, especially after 1941, when Gustav Krupp suffered a stroke. Under Alfried Krupp, the company used slave labor supplied by the Nazi regime and thereby also became involved in the Holocaust, assigning Jewish prisoners from concentration camps to work in many of its factories. Even when the military suggested that security reasons dictated that work should be performed by free German workers, Alfried Krupp insisted on using slaves.
He officially replaced his father as head of the family firm under the Lex Krupp ("Krupp Law"), proclaimed by Adolf Hitler on 12 November 1943. Krupp was also appointed Reichsminister für Rüstung und Kriegsproduktion ("Minister for Armament and War Production"). The transfer of ownership was a gesture of gratitude by Hitler and was to be one of only a few major Nazi laws that survived the fall of the regime.
Krupp worked closely with the SS, which controlled the concentration camps from which slave labor was obtained. In a letter dated 7 September 1943, he wrote: "As regards the cooperation of our technical office in Breslau, I can only say that between that office and Auschwitz the closest understanding exists and is guaranteed for the future."
According to one of his own employees, even when it was clear that the war was lost: "Krupp considered it a duty to make 520 Jewish girls, some of them little more than children, work under the most brutal conditions in the heart of the concern, in Essen."
During the war, Krupp was a noted supporter of an Indian nationalist leader, Subhash Chandra Bose, who led the Indian National Army, a military force organized by Germany and Japan.
After the war, the Allied Military Government investigated Krupp's employment of slave laborers. He was convicted of crimes against humanity and sentenced to 12 years imprisonment and the forfeiture of all property. However, after three years, New York banker John J. McCloy, serving as American High Commissioner for Germany arranged for Krupp to be pardoned and the forfeiture of property was reversed.
His second marriage on 19 May 1952 to Vera Knauer, née Hossenfeld (1909–1967), just after his release from Landsberg Prison, ended in a scandal and an expensive settlement in 1957.
Prior to Krupp's death from lung cancer, his assistant, Berthold Beitz worked to transfer control of the company to a Stiftung ("foundation"), to be monitored by three members of a supervisory board. Most notably was Hermann Josef Abs, of the former Deutsch-Asiatische Bank A.G. and Deutsche Bank AG. In this agreement, Krupp's son and heir, Arndt von Bohlen und Halbach (1938–1986), relinquished any claim over his father's businesses, and was to be paid a modest cash amount, in yearly instalments, until his own death.
Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach's Timeline
August 13, 1907
Villa Hügel, Essen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
June 24, 1938
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
July 30, 1967
Essen, Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany