Otto von Bismarck jako student

Otto spends his childhood in Konarzewo (1816-1821). At the age of 7 he is sent to elitist boarding school in Berlin. He comes back to Konarzewo at the age of 24 to administrate the property (1839-1846), first with his brother Bernard, later on his own. He matures here, and meets people who later on opened him the way to career. In 1846 he leases Konarzewo and sets off to actively do politics. He sells the property inherited from father, containing area around Konarzewo and Jarchlino to his nephew Filip in 1868. Since 1862 he is already Prussian Prime Minister.

Fragment of figure by Christian Wilhelm Allers from 1893, presenting idealised Otto von Bismark as a student.

Childhood in Konarzewo

In 1816 parents of the future Chancellor, rittmeister Karl Wilhelm Ferdinand von Bismarck (1771-1845) and his wife Luise Wilhelmine nee Mencken (1790-1839), move with their sons from family property Schönhausen to Konarzewo (German Kniephof), Nowogard County in Farther Pomerania (Hinterpomern - now Pomorze Zachodnie in Poland). Father admi­ni­strates the property around Konarzewo, Jarchlino and Kulice (Kniephof, Jarchlin, Külz) with total area estimated few thousands Hectares of agrarian land. Otto spends his childhood in Konarzewo. Mother's ambition is her sons to get education and join the civil service. At the age of 7 Otto starts education in boarding school in capital Berlin.

Otto administrates Konarzewo and Jarchlino 1839-1846

He finishes studies and passes state exam in 1835. At the age of 19 he begins application for legal advisor in Berlin City Court. Soon he gives up legal career and starts practice in state administration in Aachen. In august 1836 he falls in love. He is having affairs, plays and runs into debts in casinos. In summer 1837, travelling with his friend, he does not come back from holiday and gets fired. He abandons duties in 1838 and calls to serve one year in army.

In 1839 his mother dies. Father decides to come back to Schönhausen taking daughter Malvina with him. Otto stays in Konarzewo. Together with his brother Bernard they administrate father’s property. In 1841 Bernard becomes County Commissioner of Nowogard County (until 1888). Now Bernard administrates Kulice, and Otto does Konarzewo and Jarchlino.

After father's death in 1845, Bernard inherits Kulice, and Otto inherits Konarzewo and Jarchlino. Moreover, Otto takes over administration of family property in Schönhausen.

Wonderful, crazy Junker

Otto studies modern specialist literature and modernises the farm. Improves its condition and pays off old debts. Apart from work, he studies philosophy, art, religion and literature. To study, in 1842 he travels to England, France an Switzerland. He socialises and is welcomed on many parties around. He goes hunting and carousals with lots of alcohol. Otto shines within the company of landholders and gets the nickname of crazy and wonderful Junker. However, administrating the farm makes him bored.

Marriage with Joanna von Puttkamer

He falls in love with Maria von Thadden-Treiglaff, whose parents farm nearby. Maria also loves him, but does not want to disengage with Bismarck’s school colleague Moritz von Blanckenburg. In 1844 during Moritz and Maria wedding, Bismarck meets Joanna von Puttkamer. Maria dies suddenly in autumn 1846. After her death Otto decides to propose marriage to Joanna, which was Maria's idea. Joanna and Otto get married in 1847 in Barnowiec in Pomerania (German Reinfeld) near Bytów. Their relationship appeares to be very successful.

Gateway to political career

In years 1843-44, while visiting house of Maria's father Adolf von Thadden-Trieglaff, Bismarck meets leading conservative politicians. Among them, there are Ernest Ludwik and Leopold von Gerlach, who are impressed by him and declare help with political career. He moves to Schönhausen, which is located near Magdeburg, place of activity of Ludwik von Gerlach. Desire to make political career, contributes to resign from administrating Ko­na­rze­wo and Jarchlino, which he leases in 1846.