Ludwig I. König von Bayern
(25.08.1786 - 29.02.1868)
place of birth: Straßburg,
Königreich Bayern: Seine
Majestät der König
Ludwig I. of the House of Wittelsbach succeeded his father
Maximilian I. as King of Bavaria, reigning from 1825 through 1848.
Ludwig, who was near deaf, married Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen in
October of 1810, an event which signified the first Oktoberfest
in Munich. Even though personally opposed to his father's alliance with
Napoleon I., as crown prince and commander of Bavaria's 1st Infantry
Division, Ludwig had to serve under Marshal Lefebvre during the French
Emperor's Wars. Later however, Ludwig enthusiastically backed Bavaria's
decision to declare war on France when it joined the Sixth Coalition
Ludwig I. ascended the throne upon his father's death in 1825.
His reign was characterized by his passion for history and the arts. He
had Bavaria's administrative regions reorganized and reintroduced his
kingdom's former regional names of Oberbayern (Upper Bavaria), Franken
(Franconia), Schwaben (Swabia), and Pfalz (Palatinate). He
also established the town of Ludwigshafen along the west bank of
the Rhine. Ludwig likewise supported commercial enterprises which would
lead to Bavaria's industrial modernization, including the first German
railway, between Fürth and Nürnberg, the Ludwig Canal
connecting the Danube and Main. Bavaria also joined the German Custom's
Union, der Zollverein, in 1834. All was not perfect, however, as when he
decreed a new beer tax in 1844, the resulting riots - the Beer Riots -
forced him to restore civil order by having the price of beer reduced.
Four more years of unrest in the Kingdom culminated in the so-called March
Proclamation and numerous concessions. He ultimately decided not to
rule as a constitutional monarch and thus abdicated on 20 March, leaving
the throne to his eldest son Maximilian. The King lived for twenty more
years, passing away in Nice, France in 1868.