ESCHWEGE, Wilhelm Ludwig von
(b. 1777, Aue, Saxony, d. 1855, Wolfsanger)


Baron von Wilhelm Ludwig Eschwege was a German engineer, mineralogist and architect.

He studied law and economics at the University of Göttingen, and from 1801 worked in the mining industry in Hesse. In 1803 he moved to Portugal, and served as director of an ironworks in Estremadura. In 1810 he was named by the Portuguese government to develop ironworks in Brazil, where during the ensuing years he established 28 ironworks, principally in the province of Minas Gerais. In 1817 he was appointed director-general of Brazilian gold mines. While performing geological investigations in Brazil, he also collected natural history specimens with naturalists Grigory Langsdorff and Georg Wilhelm Freyreiss. After his return to Europe in 1821, he published a number of writings on Brazil's natural resources.

In 1834, Peter IV again called him back to the management of the mines to Portugal and appointed him as Field Marshal Lieutenant. From 1839 to 1849 he built the palace of Palácio Nacional da Pena near Sintra at the behest of the Portuguese prince and titular king Ferdinand II.