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Wilhelm Hauchecorne

Heinrich Lambert Wilhelm Hauchecorne was born in Aachen, Germany on August 13, 1828, the son of a French Huguenot family. His family moved to Cologne where he completed high school; he then applied to the Mning Office in Bonn to study mining technology. After six and a half years of study at the Berlin and Freiberg Mining Academies under Ernst Beyrich, Gustav Rose und Christian Samuel Weiß, he presented his thesis on the St. Josephsberg copper mine at Virneberg near Rheinbreitbach. It was of such high excellence that he was immediately offered the position of Mine Director there.

In 1855 Hauchecorne married Alwine Althans, daughter of the Bergrat Carl Ludwig Althans. He was promoted to Bergassessor in 1862, then to Berginspektor in 1865, and in 1866 was appointed Director of the Berlin Mining Academy. In 1873 he became the first Director of the Prussian National Geological Survey, and pioneered the standardization of colors used for different rock units on German (and ultimately all European) geologic maps.

Hauchecorne was also placed in charge of building the Geological Survey's mineralogical and geological collections. He had been a mineral collector since his youth, and he graciously donated his own substantial collection to the cause (the label shown here is from such a specimen). Furthermore, he consolidated all other governmental agency mineral and rock collections in Berlin into the Geological Survey collection. The mineral hauchecornite was named in his honor by R. Scheibe in 1892. Hauchecorne died on January 15, 1900.

BGR (2007) Zum 175. Geburtstag von Wilhelm Hauchecorne. Geowissenschaftliche Sammlungen Berlin.
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