Konrad Adenauer

05 January 1876 – 19 April 1967

Konrad Adenauer is the founding Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany. The foundational policies set during his term as Chancellor (1949-1963) are still shaping the internal structure and foreign policy of the Federal Republic of Germany today.

The entrance of the Federal Republic into the circle of Western democracies, the European integration project and the German-French reconciliation are inextricably bound to Adenauer's name. Immediately after assuming his role as Chancellor, he formulated on behalf of the people of Germany the intention to "rectify the injustice committed against the Jewish people to the greatest extent possible given the millions of lives that have been destroyed forever."

The reconstruction of West Germany, overcoming the aftermath of the war, the choice of a social market economy and far-reaching socio-political decisions fell within Adenauer's time as Chancellor.

The CDU, established after a sudden wave of party formations in 1945, rose as "the Chancellor's party" with Adenauer to become the most successful party in German twentieth-century history.

Konrad Adenauer speaking Archiv der Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung