Ragnar Sohlman

Ragnar Sohlman

Ragnar Sohlman, born February 26, 1870 in Stockholm, dead July 9, 1948 at the Karolinska hospital, Solna, was a Swedish chemical engineer, manager, civil servant, and creator of the Nobel Foundation. [ [http://nobelprize.org/alfred_nobel/will/sohlman.html Nobelprize.org: Ragnar Sohlman - Executor of the Will (1870-1948)] ]


Ragnar Sohlman was born in Stockholm, son to August Sohlman, a well-known newspaper man, and his wife Hulda Maria Sandeberg. In 1887, he enrolled at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and graduated as a chemical engineer in 1890.

In 1893 Sohlman became the assistant of Alfred Nobel in San Remo, and Nobel's will from 1895 named him and Rudolf Liljeqvist as executors, with Sohlman expected to do most of the work. The will stated: [ [http://nobelprize.org/alfred_nobel/will/will-full.html Nobelprize.org: Alfred Nobel's Will] (English translation)]

The sum of 100.000 crowns was a very significant amount at the time, and made Sohlman a wealthy man. The amound can be compared to the prize amount of the first Nobel Prizes in 1901, 150.782 crowns each. [ [http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/amounts.html Nobelprize.org: The Nobel Prize Amounts] ]

After Alfred Nobel's death on December 10, 1896, Sohlman was occupied for several years with the task of realizing Nobel's intentions of establishing the Nobel Prize. Since the will did not contain detailed regulations regarding selection of laurates and was contested by Nobel's relatives, the task kept Sohlman and his advisors occupied for several years. Sohlman was a member of the interim board of the Nobel Foundation.

Sohlman also had a career as engineer and manager in Nobel-related companies, such as Bofors. He was also the director general of the Swedish National Board of Trade 1935-1936.

He was the executive director of the Nobel Foundation 1929-1946.

He is the father of , a Swedish diplomat, and . His grandson Michael Sohlman is the present executive director of the Nobel Foundation.


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