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Otto von Bismarck and German Unification

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Katja Zoner

on 25 January 2014

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Transcript of Otto von Bismarck and German Unification

Otto Von Bismarck
and the
German Nationalist Movement
Causes of the Nationalist Movement
Congress of Vienna
German Revolution
of 1848
Prussia/Austria Rivalry
(Prussian lion circling Austrian Elephant)
Congress of Vienna:

A meeting of ambassadors from each European country to redistribute and balance out land and power after Napoleon's conquests.
Separate german states are united into the German Confederation in an effort to stabilize their governments and economies
German states can be united because they share similar heritage, language, customs, and folklore
After Congress of Vienna, German Confederation includes 39 german states and part of Prussia and part of Austria occupied by many Germans
Map decided on by Congress of Vienna
Prussian/Austrian Rivalry
Prussia and Austria were the two Great Powers of Europe at the time
German Confederation included parts of both countries
Both countries wanted control over the German Confederation, which led to conflict
Austria
Didn't want Prussians to take control of German Confederation because Germans living in Austria would break away and join Prussia, which would weaken Austria
Austria was a more multinational empire
Austria was already dealing with conflict in Italy and France so their resources were limited and their defenses were stretched too far
Prussia
The majority of Prussia's population was German
Prussia's army was powerful and had many allies
Prussia was industrializing quickly, so its economy was improving and its technology was advancing
German Revolution of 1848
Severe economic depression stopped industrialization
Crop failures caused widespread famine
These factors created open rebellion among lower classes in German Confederation and armed uprisings in Vienna and Berlin
Revolution spread German nationalism and the desire for a stronger, democratic, united Germany
Otto von Bismarck
Born in 1815 to an aristocratic family
First became involved in politics in 1847 as part of the Prussian
Landtag
(parliament)
In 1849 he joined the Prussian Chamber of Deputies
Worked as Prussian ambassador to Russia and France
In 1862 he was appointed as Prussian Premier (Prime Minister) and Foreign Minister of Russia
In 1871 became Chancellor of German Empire
Known as the "Iron Chancellor" because he once said he used "iron and blood" (built up Prussia's army) to gain German Unification, and because he believed in
realpolitik
, politics based on strength and power not idealism
Encouraged nationalism and embraced the cause of German Unification
Because of him, Germany went from a loose confederation of weak states to a unified empire known for its military strength
(overview)
Bismarck's Goals
Become allies with other European countries to ostracize Austria
Build Prussia's army
Weaken Austria

Make Berlin the center of commerce, not Vienna
Unify northern german states under Prussian control
Add the southern german states to Prussia's control
Put earlier goals into practice by...
Major Events
Danish War (1864)
Earlier Goals
2.) Strengthen Prussian Army
1.) Ostracize Austria by Gathering Allies
Austria had lost a valuable ally with Russia because it refused to help Russia in its war against France and Britain
Bismarck made an alliance with Russia by refusing to help Poland rebel against Russia
Bismarck made alliance with France by promising Napoleon III that Prussia would support France in its plans to invade Belgium
Bismarck made a deal with Italy saying that Italy would help Prussia in a war against Austria, as long as it was initiated by Austria and Italy would gain control of Venezia in return
Rapid industrialization gave Prussia's army:
More advanced weaponry
Telegraphs for better communication
Railroads for better transportation
Bismarck collected higher taxes to fund the army without parliament's approval

Fulfilling these initial goals enabled Bismarck to achieve his final goals through....
Austro-Prussian War (1866)
Franco-Prussian War (1870)
Danish War (1864)
1863: Denmark's constitution declares Schleswig and Holstein part of Denmark
1864: Prussia and Austria protest the constitution and declare war on Denmark
Fighting lasts 3 months until Denmark gives up Schleswig and Holstein
1865: the Gastein Convention is a treaty that lets Austria rule Holstein and Prussia rule Schleswig
Bismarck knows this treaty could cause the conflict with Austria that he desires to start a war with them because Austria will have to cross through hostile Prussia territory to get to Holstein
Austro-Prussian War (1866)
1866: Bismarck provokes Austria into declaring war over conflict on Schleswig-Holstein territories
Lasted 7 weeks (so it's also called the Seven Weeks War)
Prussia quickly defeats Austria
Spreads a sense of nationalism and pride among Prussians
The rest of Europe realizes how powerful Prussia has become
As a result of the war, the Treaty of Prague is made between Ausria and Prussia saying:
Austria surrenders Holstein
The German Confederation is disbanded and re-organised under Prussian rule as the Northern German Confederation, which includes the Northern german states and Prussia but not Austria
Bismarck still wants to control and unite the Southern states
Franco-Prussian War (1870)
Bismarck realizes a war with France will cause the Southern German state to unite with the North because it gives all Germans a common cause to rally against
There is existing friction with France because Napoleon III is angry at Prussia and Spain since the Spanish crown is being given to a cousin of Prussia's king, which Napoleon III thinks is conspiratorial
Bismarck builds off this conflict and uses the media to provoke Napoleon III into declaring war with Prussia
Bismarck's plan works and France declares war in 1870
The war is brief and ends by 1871 when Prussia defeats France
As a result of the war, France loses Alsace-Loraine and the Southern German states join the North and Prussia to create the German Empire
Bismarck becomes Chancellor of the German Empire in 1871
Red Outline Shows Entire German Empire
Lasting Impact of German Nationalism Movement and Otto Von Bismarck
The German Empire is created.
After the wars, Bismarck focuses on domestic issues.
Helps establish uniform civil and criminal code
Promotes industrialization
Oversees construction of Germany's constitution, which is based off Prussia's
Bismarck united all separate German states into one empire
Prussia is no longer a country, it's part of the German Empire
Berlin becomes Empire's capitol
Bismarck institutes world's first welfare program.
The program includes workers compensation and old-age benefits
It becomes a model for the United States' social security program developed by Franklin Roosevelt
Works Cited

Beck, Roger, et al. World History Patterns of Interaction. Evanston: McDougal Littell, 1999. Print.

Bismarck. Hanover Historical Texts Project, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://history.hanover.edu/texts/bis.html>.
(Primary) Included excerpts from Memoirs written by Otto von Bismarck.

Bismarck and Unification. BBC, 2013. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/higher/history/nationalism/unification/revision/1/>.

The Congress of Vienna and German Nationalism. Indiana University, n.d. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.iun.edu/~hisdcl/h114_2002/germanunification.htm>.

Documents of German Unification. Fordham University, July 1998. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.fordham.edu/Halsall/mod/germanunification.asp>.
(Primary) Included excerpts from many different primary sources. I used the Speech to the Frankfurt Assembly in 1848, a Letter to Minister von Manteuffel from 1856, and a quote from Otto von Bismarck from 1866.

Strauss, Gerald. "The Defeat of Austria." Germany: The Defeat of Austria.
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2013. Web. 19 Nov. 2013. <http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/231186/Germany/58188/The-defeat-of-Austria>.

Red outline shows entire German Empire
Rise of German Empire sets stage for World Wars.
German Empire known as 2nd Reich
Germany became biggest power in Europe, which gave it the influence to start the First and Second World Wars
Lead to Nazi Germany (Third Reich)
Full transcript