Meyer-Waldeck, Alfred (1864 – 1928), Gouverneur



Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, 27. Nov. 1864 as Alfred Meyer, as the 8th child among 10 children.  Died in Bad Kissingen 25.8.1928, buried in Heidelberg.  His father: Friedrich Meyer, his mother: Dorothea von Boursy. The father was professor for German literature and editor of the newspaper: “Deutsche Zeitung” in St. Petersburg. The family moved to Heidelberg in 1874, where the father was professor at the university. (As author the father called himself Meyer von Waldeck.)  Alfred attended the gymnasium in Bonn and Heidelberg, and finished school with the abitur in 1883. Studied two semester at the university of Heidelberg, but then entered the navy as midshipman (Kadett) in 1884.  Two voyages to Westindia. Sub-lieutenant (Leutnant z.S.) in 1887, Lieutenant (Oberleutnant z.S.) in 1890. Since autumn 1893 he worked for 2 years for the Supreme Command of the Navy.  Lieutenant-commander (Kapitänleutnant) in 1897, he attended the Navy Academy from 1897-99. From 1899-1901 on board of the small cruiser “Geier” as first officer, at the beginning the warship was on the west coast of America, but when the Boxer Rebellion startet, the boat was sent to China, where it arrived in Yantai (Chefoo) on August 29th,1900. In October the boat was in Tsingtau, went on Oct.28 to Shanghai, where it stayed until February 1901. From 5th until 29th  April the ship was again in Tsingtau.       From autumn 1901 until 1905 Alfred Meyer  was in the admirality staff of the navy in Berlin. In 1903 he had changed his name to Meyer-Waldeck and had been promoted to Korvettenkapitän.  For 6 months in 1905 he was first officer on the warship „Wettin“, but from autumn 1905 until summer 1908 he was member of the admirality staff of the first navy squadron on board the warship “Wittelsbach”.  He became commander (Fregattenkapitän) in 1907 and Kapitän z.S.  on 27.1.1909.  On 24.6.1908 he was appointed chief of staff for Tsingtau, where he arrived on 24.12.1908. During this term of office he was also deputy-governor of Jiaozhou Leased Territory from 6.4.1909 until 2.4.1910, during which time governor Truppel was in Germany. Meyer-Waldeck returned to Germany on 22.2.1911 by train via Siberia, but a few months later was appointed governor for Tsingtau as successor to governor Truppel, who left on 14.5.1911.  Meyer-Waldeck arrived in Tsingtau on 22.11.1911. In the period from May to November 1911 the chief of staff, captain Wilhelm Höpfner, had served as substitute governor. When Japan declared war on Germany on August 23rd,1914, Meyer-Waldeck organised the defense during the Japanese siege. On November 7th the Japanese troops occupied the city and Meyer-Waldeck was brought to Japan as prisoner of war, where he stayed until 1920. On 22.3.1915 he became rear-admiral, on 27.1.1918 vice-admiral.  In May 1920 he returned on the “Nankai Maru” to Germany. He was pensioned on 31.8.1920. From 1920 until 1928 he lived in Berlin, but because of ill health in summer 1928 he visited the spa Bad Kissingen, where he died. He was buried in Heidelberg in the family grave.

     On 11.10. 1898 he married in Kiel Johanna Ney. She was born 31.12.1880 in Spandau and died 20.08.1964. The couple had one son Hans  (born in Charlottenburg 23.7.1902, died 1965)   and 2 daughters: Hertha (born 1906, died 1919) and Dagmar (born 25.6.1908 in Kiel, died 2005).  His son Hans Meyer-Waldeck was married and had one son, Klaus Meyer-Waldeck, and one daughter Irina Straub-Meyer-Waldeck. –  Dagmar was first married to Dr. med. Hans Storz, with whom she had four children (Sybille, Andreas, Johannes and Sebastian Storz). After the divorce in 1960 she married Kurt Frowein.

Sources: Eberhard von Mantey in: Deutsches Biographisches Jahrbuch, Bd.X: Das Jahr 1928.   Stuttgart 1931, S. 172-176.

Kiautschou-Post, 2. Halbband 1911, S. 378 (vom 26.11.1911).