Dollfuss, Engelbert

BORN 4 Oct 1892, Texing - DIED 25 Jul 1934, Wien
GRAVE LOCATION Wien: Hietzinger Friedhof, Maxingstraße 15, Hietzing (Gruppe 27, Nummer 11/12)

Engelbert Dolfuss was the only child of Josepha Dolfuss. His father is unknown. He studied Law in Vienna and Economics in Berlin. Although he was initially considered too small he entered the Austrian army. As a soldier he was decorated several times. After the First World War he worked for the ministry of Agriculture.

In 1930 he was appointed president of the Federal Railway System. He was an active member of the Christian Social Party and in 1931 he became minister of agriculture and forests.

On 20 May 1932 he became prime minister of a government that only had a small majority. Austrian suffered from the loss of many his industrial areas and the worldwide depression. After severe problems with the National Council Dolfuss asked president Miklas to adjourn it by decree and he instructed the police to prevent members from entering the parliament building.

From that moment he acted as a dictator. He had been afraid that the Austrian national socialists would win many seats in the next elections and he banned both the national socialist party NSDAP and the communists. Only the Social Democrats were allowed to remain in existence as a political force.

Dollfuss tried to copy Mussolini's model in Italy and the latter guaranteed Austria's independence in 1933. In October 1933 the national socialist Rudolf Dertill tried to murder Dollfus but he failed.

The Social Democrats started a resistance against Dolfuss and in February 1934 a civil war broke out, but Dollfuss suppressed the uprisings and the Social Democrats were banned as well. On 1 May 1934 he had a new constitution approved by a parliament that only consisted of members of his own party.

On 25 Jul 1934 ten Austrian nazis entered the building of the Chancellery and murdered him. Their coup d'état failed after Mussolini threatened Hitler with a war if the Germans invaded Austria. The killers were caught and executed. Kurt Scuschnogg succeeded Dollfuss as chancellor.

Dollfuss was buried at the Hietzing Cemetery in Vienna. His wife Alwine and his children Hannerl and Eva were buried in the same grave.


The grave of Engelbert Dollfuss at the Hietzinger Friedhof, Vienna.
Picture by Androom (30 Aug 2002)


Engelbert Dollfuss - Wikipedia
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Published: 09 Jan 2010
Last update: 04 Dec 2022