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Baur Erwin

The German botanist Dr. Erwin Baur (1875-1933) first studied medicine and then biology. In 1911, he was appointed to the chair of botany at the Berlin Agricultural College and in 1914, the first Institute of Heredity Science. At that time, phylloxera, as well as powdery and downy mildew, was a serious problem in European viticulture. Baur recognised that it must be possible to combine the resistance of American wild vines with the quality of European cultivated vines by consistently applying genetic laws. In 1928, he founded the Department of Grapevine Breeding in Müncheberg (Mark Brandenburg) as a branch of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute (KWI) for Breeding Research (the picture shows the entrance to the former main building). He introduced resistance breeding and entrusted this task to his assistant Dr. Bernhard Husfeld (1900-1970). After Baur's death in 1933, Husfeld became interim director of the institute and brought extensive vine breeding material from Mönchehof to the Geilweilerhof vine breeding institute in Siebeldingen-Pfalz after the Second World War. Baur was editor of several (partly still existing) journals such as "Zeitschrift für induktive Abstammungs- und Vererbungslehre", the world's first journal on genetics (today "Molecular and General Genetics"), as well as author of widely used textbooks such as "Die wissenschaftlichen Grundlagen der Pflanzenzüchtung" (1921).

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