Published by Joseph Jung on behalf of the Alfred Escher Foundation,
with contributions by Claudia Aufdermauer, Bruno Fischer, Joseph Jung, Björn Koch, Katrin Rigort und Sandra Wiederkehr.
Publisher: NZZ Libro
Size: 442 pages
Featuring 106 previously unpublished letters and extensive commentary, volume 5 of the series "Alfred Escher | Briefe" provides fascinating insights into an eventful, turbulent and influential chapter of Swiss history.
In 1852 Alfred Escher helped to push the Railways Act though federal parliament, shepherding Switzerland into the modern industrial age. The rapid expansion of private rail companies was the catalyst for Switzerland's economic and social awakening. As a politician and business leader, Escher played a major role in setting the course for the new federal state. He helped broker an end to potential military conflicts in Neuchâtel and Savoy, and he recognized the importance of trade agreements to Switzerland's economy. Escher, more than anyone else, influenced and exploited Switzerland's window of economic liberalism. By founding the Nordostbahn Railway (now the SBB, Swiss Federal Railways), the Eidgenössisches Polytechnikum (now the ETH), Schweizerische Kreditanstalt (now Credit Suisse) and Schweizerische Lebensversicherungs- und Rentenanstalt (now Swiss Life), he contributed hugely to Switzerland's success.