The New International Encyclopædia/Delbrück, Martin Friedrich Rudolf von
DELBRÜCK, Martin Friedrich Rudolf von (1817-1903). A German statesman, born in Berlin. He came of a distinguished family, his father, Johann Friedrich Gottlieb Delbrück (died 1830), having been preceptor of the two Prussian princes afterwards respectively known as King William IV. and Emperor William I. He studied in Halle, Bonn, and Berlin. After an association of fifteen years with the Prussian Bureau of Commerce (organized as the Ministry of Commerce in 1848), he became in 1859 director of the Department of Commerce and Industry, in which capacity he skillfully consolidated the German Zollverein and negotiated important treaties with France (1862), and subsequently with England, Belgium, Italy, and other European States. In August, 1867, Bismarck secured his advancement to the presidency of the Chancery of the North-German Confederation. He also became a Prussian Minister of State in 1868, and in both positions, in which he was virtually the representative of the ‘Iron Chancellor,’ he displayed a strict adherence to constitutional principles, notwithstanding the great difficulties frequently encountered in the defense of the measures advocated by Bismarck. In October, 1870, he was sent on diplomatic missions to the various courts of South Germany, in order to promote the unification of the country, and the ultimate conclusion of the treaties at Versailles (November 15, 23, and 25, 1870) was directly due to the skill and tact with which Delbrück had discharged this important mission. He was president of the Imperial Chancellery until 1876, when Bismarck began to inaugurate that protective policy which Delbrück as the representative of free trade had ever strenuously opposed. His literary productions include the anonymous monograph Der Zollverein und das Tabaksmonopol (1857) and the legal treatise entitled Der Artikel 46 der Reichsverfassung.