Lüderitz, Frans Adolf Eduard
(1834–1886)
   Merchant adventurer and cofounder of Germany’s first colony in Southwest Africa, Frans Lüderitz was the son of a prosperous tobacco dealer from Bremen. Lüderitz inherited a fortune and took to traveling. Together with Heinrich Vogelsang, also in throes of boredom of inherited wealth, in 1883 he purchased a parcel of land from the Khoikhoi in modern-day Namibia for the equivalent of £100. It was later extended and named, absurdly, Lüderitzland. In 1884, Berlin announced, even more absurdly, that Lüderitzland was a protectorate of the Reich. This action is widely considered the birth of the German colonial empire.
   See also <>; <>; <>.
   FURTHER READING:
    Henderson, W. O. The German Colonial Empire 1884–1919. London: Frank Cass, 1993;
    Pakenham, Thomas. The Scramble for Africa. New York: Random House, 1991;
    Smith, Woodruff D. The German Colonial Empire. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1978.
   CARL CAVANAGH HODGE

Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.

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