- A family of French industrialists originally from Bruges, the Wendels settled in Coblenz in the 16th century, and, beginning of the 18th century, at Hayange, where Jean-Martin Wendel obtained the rights to the forges. His son, Charles Wendel (1708-84), became one of the principal suppliers of artillery to the state. Ignace Wendel (1741-95), the son of Charles, became the commissioner of royal forges and the director of numerous factories, and was one of the first to substitute coke for charcoal in the manufacturing of iron (1769). He established the forge at Creusot (1785) before emigrating during the revolution of 1789. François de Wendel (1778-1825), the son of Ignace, regained the forges at Hayange after the Revolution and also acquired those at Moyeuvre. In 1871, Les Petits-Fils de François de Wendel et Cie was founded, directed by his grandsons, Henri and Robert de Wendel. This company expanded greatly in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. During World War I and World War II, as the factories were located in German-occupied areas, they were confiscated and made part of German consortia. After the war, the Société de Wendel et Cie, which in 1952 went public, became one of the largest French iron and steel companies.
France. A reference guide from Renaissance to the Present . 1884.
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