2/5/1915 The sad death of Clara Immerwahr

As a young woman Clara Immerwahr studied chemistry in Breslau, carrying out her own chemical researches after graduation. She married the chemist Fritz Haber in 1901. Social expectations meant that she gave up working outside the home. Immerwahr largely abandoned chemistry, though she did contribute to some of her husband’s work, albeit without receiving any public credit for so doing.

With the passage of time, Immerwahr has become somewhat estranged from her husband. Haber’s work on Germany’s chemical warfare programme (which he largely summoned into being) proves the final straw. She sees gas warfare as a perversion of science and an abomination that runs against the humanist values she holds dear. She quarrels with her husband and then kills herself with his service pistol.

Fritz Haber does not stay to supervise his wife’s funeral. Leaving behind his thirteen year old son Hermann (in whose arms Clara Immerwahr has died), Haber leaves for the Eastern Front to supervise further poison gas attacks there.

Clara Immerwahr in her student days (Wikipedia)

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