GDCh Celebrates 150 Years

(German Chemical Society/Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker)



GDCh Fact of the Month

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Adolf Bayer, German Chemical Society founded

The German Chemical Society (Deutsche Chemische Gesellschaft (DChG)), a precursor of the GDCh, was founded in Berlin on November 11, 1867 in a constituent meeting by Adolf Baeyer, University of Berlin, and more than 100 other chemists. The society was modeled after the British Chemical Society, the precursor of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). The idea was to foster the communication of new ideas, strengthen the alliance between science and industry, and to encourage mutual exchange.

[1] Die Früchte der Chemie, Nachr. Chem. 2017, 65(1), 3. DOI: 10.1002/nadc.20174058113


Hofmann 1st president of German Chemical Society

At the 1st General Assembly in January 1868, August Wilhelm Hofmann, University of Berlin, was elected as the first President of the German Chemical Society (Deutsche Chemische Gesellschaft (DChG)).
The term of office was then one year. In the first 25 years (1868–1892), Hofmann served 14 times as President and 11 times as Vice-President.

[1] Die Früchte der Chemie, Nachr. Chem. 2017, 65(1), 3. DOI: 10.1002/nadc.20174058113
[2] einhundertundfünfzig, Nachr. Chem. 2017, 65(1), 46–47. DOI: 10.1002/nadc.20174057546
[3] Constituirende Versammlung vom 11. November 1867, Chem. Ber. 1868, 1–4. DOI: 10.1002/cber.18680010102


Founding Year of Chemical Societies

How old are the chemical societies in Australia, Germany, Japan, UK, and USA?
1. The British Chemical Society, precursor of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), was founded in 1841 in London.
2. The German Chemical Society (Deutsche Chemische Gesellschaft (DChG), precursor of GDCh (German Chemical Society), was founded in 1867 in Berlin.
3. The American Chemical Society (ACS) was founded 1876 in New York.
4. The Chemical Society of Japan (CSJ) was founded in 1878 in Tokyo.
5. The Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI) was founded 1917 in Sydney.


1st female GDCh member; Elisabeth Merck

The German chemical societies accepted a woman as a member for the first time in 1910. Elisabeth Merck became a member of the VDCh, a precursor of the GDCh. She was the daughter of Emanuel A. Merck, who had been chairman of the VDCh from 1901–1906.
Today the proportion of female members in the GDCh is around 28 %.

[1] einhundertundfünfzig, Nachr. Chem. 2017, 65(1), 46–47.


Nachtichten aus der Chemie membership magazine, German Chemical Society GDCh

The GDCh published their membership magazine Nachrichten aus der Chemie und Technik (News from Chemistry and Technology) for the first time in January 1953. Till 1976, it was published as a special service of Angewandte Chemie by VCH (Verlag Chemie, today Wiley-VCH). Printed on blue paper, the Nachrichten was quickly referred to as Blaue Blätter (blue sheets). Since 1977, the Nachrichten aus Chemie, Technik und Laboratorium (News from Chemistry, Technology, and Laboratory) has been published as an independent scientific monthly magazine. The editorial office was first located in Heidelberg, moved to VCH in Weinheim in 1970, and to Frankfurt to the GDCh headquarter in 1998. Since January 2000, the magazine is published with its present-day name: Nachrichten aus der Chemie.

[1] Hermann G. Hauthal, 60 Jahre Blaue Blätter, Nachr. Chem. 2012. DOI: 10.1002/nadc.201290307
[2] Christian Remenyi, einhundertundfünfzig, Nachr. Chem. 2017, 65 (4), 458–459. DOI: 10.1002/nadc.20174057606


The Verein Deutscher Chemiker (VDCh, Association of German Chemists), a forerunner of the GDCh, founded the journal Zeitschrift für die Chemische Industrie (Journal for the Chemical Industry) for its members in 1887. In 1888, the title was changed to Zeitschrift für Angewandte Chemie (Journal of Applied Chemistry), and in 1941, it was changed to Die Chemie. Verlag Chemie (VCH) started publishing the journal in 1921. Due to World War II, the journal was not published from April 1945 to December 1946.
In 1947, publication was resumed under the current title, Angewandte Chemie. In 1962, the English-language edition was launched as Angewandte Chemie International Edition. Today, Angewandte Chemie, with its Impact Factor of 11.994 (2016), is one of the leading general chemistry journals and the flagship journal of the German Chemical Society (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker, GDCh).

More on Angewandte Chemie





  • September 10: Celebration in Berlin starts with a ceremony in the Konzerthaus Berlin, a concert hall situated on the Gendarmenmarkt square. Nobel Laureate Roald Hoffmann will speak there among others.

  • September 11: Angewandte Festsymposium (confirmed speakers include Nobel Laureates: Ben Feringa, Robert Grubbs, W. E. Moerner, Jack Szostak; will also be streamed live by Registration to view the lectures online is free and will open soon), Henry Ford Building of the Free University of Berlin
    Register for free to follow this event online.


    Angewandte FestSymposium


  • September 11: Chemistry Slam, Henry Ford Building of the Free University of Berlin.

  • September 12 and 13: WiFo 2017 (Wissenschaftsforum/Science Forum), the largest biannual event of the GDCh. This year, it will take place under the motto "Chemistry Moves" (Chemie bewegt).

  • September 14: Symposium Experiment Future – Value Thinking in Chemistry (Experiment Zukunft – Wertedenken in der Chemie) will discuss the contribution that chemistry must make for the future of mankind.


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