skip to content

Historical information - page 3

Haus II (in Abriss) der Chemischen Institute der Universität zu Köln, Fotograf: Georg Grün, Februar 1976

After Prof. Darapsky became emeritus professor in 1939, Prof. Kurt Alder, who after having qualified as university professor under Otto Diels in 1930 went into the research department of I. G. Farben's Leverkusen branch, was nominated head of the Chemical Institute.

In 1940, Willi Hacker took over the position of principal of the Analytic Inorganic Section from Prof. Wintgen, who now could fully dedicate himself to his chair at the Institute of Physical Chemistry and Colloidal Chemistry. Between 1925 and 1940, 112 students majoring in chemistry obtained their doctorate.

After the end of war it was impossible to hold practical courses at the institute until winter term 1947/48 because the city gas supply was interrupted. During twelve weeks in summer 1947, 400 volunteering natural science and medicine students unearthed 6000 m of gas pipes between Maarweg and Zülpicher Strasse, sealed and covered them up again. After this, Prof. Alder was able to inform the board of trustees that the institute could operate at 100% again.

In 1950, Kurt Alder received the Nobel Prize in chemistry together with his teacher Otto Diels. They already made the laudable discovery of the Dien synthetic principle in 1927. To honour the first Nobel Prize laureate of the university, the City of Cologne and the county of North Rhine-Westfalia authorized special grants for the installation of laboratories in Augusta Hospital's House I, which was still occupied by patients suffering from infections. In the meantime, the number of available practical course places at Cologne's Chemical Institute was exceeded by 300 interested students.

Even after the move into House I in January 1954, the number of practical course places was far from being sufficient. So Prof. Franz Fehér, who succeeded Prof. Hacker from Göttingen as principal of the Analytic Inorganic Section in 1949, was forced to permanently reject a large number of upper division student applicants who had not received a practical course place by drawing lots.

< back   continue>