Artist / Author / Cartographer:
A photolithograph of Peking which was published in Berlin in 1864. Plate no. 39.
The Eulenburg Expedition was a diplomatic mission conducted by Friedrich Albrecht zu Eulenburg on behalf of Prussia and the German Customs Union in 1859-62. Its aim was to establish diplomatic and commercial relations with China, Japan and Siam.
In 1859, King Prince William, who was acting as Regent for his seriously ill brother Friedrich Wilhelm IV, appointed Friedrich Albrecht Count of Eulenburg Extraordinary Envoy to a Prussian Mission to Eastern Asia.
The major participants of the expedition were Friedrich Albrecht zu Eulenburg, Lucius von Ballhausen (doctor), Max von Brandt (attaché), Wilhelm Heine (painter), Albert Berg (artist), Karl Eduard Heusner, Fritz von Hollmann, Werner Von Reinhold, Ferdinand von Richthofen and Gustav Spiess.
The expedition was provided with three warships from the Prussian East Asian Squadron, the SMS Arcona, the SMS Thetis and the SMS Frauenlob.
In May 1861, the Eulenburg expedition arrived in Tianjin, where Count Eulenburg initiated negotiations with the Zongli Yamen for a commercial treaty with the Qing Empire. This was not at a very good time for China, since Britain and France had just invaded Beijing in the Second Opium War and the Xianfeng Emperor was still exiled in Chengde. The negotiations took three months and the Emperor died in late August. Finally on 2 September 1861, Count Eulenburg and Qing representative Chonglun signed a commercial treaty with the Qing Empire, which was modeled on the French Treaty of Tianjin. In the treaty, Prussia represented the whole German Customs Union and the treaty would govern Sino-German relations until World War I, when the treaty was repudiated by China.
Scarce early engraving.