Alfred Nobel – Trust is the Only True Wealth
At a time when Alfred Nobel left this world in his accounts there were over $ 150 million in its present value. From this great sum, no a penny received by his family, the money was intended to promote peace in the world through the most admired prize of the modern era – the Nobel Prize. There wouldn’t be strange thing that Alfred Nobel’s wealth, which he intended for peace, had not earned by the production and sale of explosives.
We do not know exactly what Alfred Nobel meant when he claimed that his research and findings regarding powder, nitroglycerin and dynamite would help humankind to create lasting peace and prosperity. The true, technically advanced explosives created by this Swedish industry have made it easier for miners and builders to build tunnels and bridges. This was a great deal at a time when Nobel lived, especially when it is known that the time between 1871 and 1914 was the longest continuous time without war in Europe since the end of the Roman Empire.
When there are no wars, then it is a time of prosperity, hence the golden age of techniques, architecture and science. Alfred Nobel did not describe himself as a capitalist and an industrialist. He saw himself as a philanthropist, the benefactor of all mankind, and the hate fighter.
“As far as I am concerned, I would like all the weapons and everything associated with them to go to hell, which is the right place for their display and use,” Alfred said at one time.
However, if he did not like the weapon, he liked the money it had brought, and the money would allow him to live the life he wanted, above all, to travel and stay in luxurious baths throughout Europe. To do this, he sold his deadly products to anyone who offered him money. By the end of life he will repent because of it.
Alfred Nobel was born in Stockholm in 1833, as the third son of Immanuel Nobel. In generations, the Nobel men were businessmen and industrialists, and Immanuel Nobel engaged in the production of various types of weapons and gunpowder, then the only known explosive, whose enhancement was of great interest to him, and he worked on it continuously.
Immanuel Nobel was an intelligent and worthy man, but not too skilled businessman, and by the age of ten Alfred Nobel lived in a bit of a scarcity. Nevertheless, happiness smiled around about 1843, when Russian Emperor Nikolai the First was interested in their products, who was delighted with the strength of the Immanuel Nobels’ bombs, and especially loved floating mines, which Russia successfully used in 1855 in the Crimean War which was led by Turks, the French and the British.
However, the Nobel bombs would not help Russia, which lost the war, and the emperor who died in the battle. The defeat of Russia and its army meant bankruptcy for the Nobel family. Alfred’s brothers were staying in St. Petersburg, trying to save the company while Alfred went to America to study chemistry, where he became interested in nitroglycerin, a liquid explosive of great power invented by an Italian in 1847. Nevertheless, nitroglycerin was very unstable, easily inflammable and dangerous, which prevented its wider application and successful sales.
Returning from America in 1860, Alfred Nobel devotes his entire time and attention to the invention of “safe” nitroglycerin that would be easily transported and used safely. He will succeed in that intent, inventing the detonator cap and the smoldering gunpowder, but he will endure a great family tragedy. In September of 1864, their Stockholm plant will fly into the air, and several workers will die as well as the youngest Alfred brother Emil Nobel.
However, the young and entrepreneurial Alfred Nobel has not lost his temper and, one day after the tragedy, he continued his work, looking for a “stabilization” of nitroglycerin. He tried everything that came under his hand, from paper, old bricks, sawdust… until he came up with the idea of using infusion soil, and thus formed a dynamite, an explosive in the shape of a dough that could be safely transported and safely use. Later, Nobel will invent other explosives and weapons, but he will still be known primarily for the dynamics that will give him the most money, fame, and criticism.
“They introduced me as a “genius of evil,” as a “merchant of death,” and I only worked for the benefit of mankind. The only goal of my life was to spread knowledge, convinced that this meant, first of all, to spread well-being.” Nobel complained in one letter.
He worked on his inventions and the improvement of his products continuously, sometimes longer than 20 hours a day, practically not coming out of the house, and his neighbors from Stockholm called him “crazy scientist”. Because of the life-threatening working pace he lived, he quickly began to grow old, and he complained about problems with his heart, stomach, headache, and he seemed to have had occasional problems with depression.
He never married, and he did not have any children. Nevertheless, biographers say that he had three great love, and his first teenage love died of tuberculosis. From 1873, he lived and worked in Paris, where he hired a secretary named Bertha Kinsky, whom he asked to marry three years later, but she refused him. That same year, traveling through Austria and staying at a health resort, he met a fatal 20-year-old florist named Sofie Hess, who reminded him of his first love, but Alfred kept their relationship at a distance, he supported her, bought her gifts and paid bills until his death in 1896.
Alfred Nobel was very critical of himself and what he looked like in other people’s eyes. His views on himself can best be distinguished from the letter sent in 1887 to Brother Ludwig. However, in 1888, his brother died suddenly during his visit to Cannes. The French press confused the two of them and announced that “Alfred Nobel, a death merchant and inventor of the way to kill as many people as possible as never before, died”. These words have struck Alfred hard, and he decided to be remembered after something good.
Therefore, 94% of his wealth was intended to establish the Nobel Prize, which would be awarded to individuals for the benefit of humanity, every year, regardless of religion or nationality. At the moment of writing the will, his wealth amounted to just over 31 million Swedish kroons, or 150 million dollars. Calculated in today’s value, Alfred’s legacy is $472 million. Should it be said that the will was written with a hand on the most common piece of paper.
Nobel Prize is awarded to Nobel Prize laureates, first of all, to people fighting for peace in the world and advocating for disarmament. It is strange that the money for the greatest peace prize is secured by money from the sale of weapons, or from something that has produced a lot of destruction and human suffering. The first Nobel Prize was awarded in 1901 to Henry Dunant, founder of the Red Cross, and already there were disagreements as to whether the will of Alfred Nobel was being respected. Many of the Nobel Peace Prizes were received by people whose lifestyle was either twin or vague, such as Henry Kissinger, Bill Clinton, Yasser Arafat, Barack Obama, and on the other hand, Nobel Prize was not awarded to Nikola Tesla or James Joyce.
Regardless of what is invented lethal device, Nobel believed that his explosives to bring peace, because no one will be allowed to start a war, fearing the terrible toll…
Here are some of Nobel Prize laureates we’ve already mentioned:
Marie Curie (1903 and 1911)
Albert Einstein (1921)
Alexander Fleming (1945)
Ernest Hemingway (1954)