Louis Ruchonnet

Coordinates: 46°31′25″N 6°35′37″E / 46.5237°N 6.5936°E / 46.5237; 6.5936
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Louis Ruchonnet
Antoine Louis John Ruchonnet

(1834-04-28)28 April 1834
Lausanne, Vaud, Switzerland
Died14 September 1893(1893-09-14) (aged 59)
Bern, Bern-Mittelland, Switzerland
Resting placeBois-de-Vaux Cemetery, Lausanne, Vaud, Switzerland
46°31′25″N 6°35′37″E / 46.5237°N 6.5936°E / 46.5237; 6.5936
MonumentsMusee des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne (portrait)
Old Town of Lausanne (bronze statue)
EducationUniv. of Lausanne, 1856 (MLaw)
OccupationPatent attorney
Years active1859 – 1893
OfficePresident of the Swiss Confederation
Term1883, 1890
PredecessorSimeon Bavier, Bernhard Hammer
SuccessorEmil Welti
Political partyFree Democratic Party of Switzerland
  • François-Louis Ruchonnet (father)
  • Susanne Boomer (mother)
AwardsDoctorate (honorary), University of Bern (1886)

Antoine Louis John Ruchonnet (28 April 1834, in Lausanne – 14 September 1893, in Bern) was a 19th-century Swiss attorney and politician. In 1864, he founded the Vaud Credit Union (French: l'Union vaudoise de crédit).[1]

Public service[edit]

He was first elected to public service as a deputy to the Grand Council of Vaud in 1863, then twice to the Lausanne Communal Council (1866–68, 1878–81).[1] On 10 December 1875 he was elected to the Swiss Federal Council for the canton of Vaud but declined to serve. He was elected again as Federal Counsellor on 3 March 1881[2] and this time accepted the position and died still in office on 14 September 1893. He served twice as President of the Confederation, first in 1883 and again in 1890. He was a unifying figure, along with his successor as Federal Counsellor for Vaud, Eugène Ruffy, in the Free Democratic Party of Switzerland.[1]

During his time in office he was responsible for the following federal administrative departments:


Ruchonnet was elected to serve as the first Master of Liberty Masonic Lodge (French: Loge Maçonnique Liberté à l'Orient de Lausanne) in Lausanne when it was chartered on 11 September 1871.[3]

Likenesses and namesakes[edit]

Avenue Louis-Ruchonnet in Lausanne is named after him and a bronze statue of him stands in the Old Town of Lausanne, erected in 1906. There is also an 1888 portrait of him by Adolfo Müller-Ury (1862-1947) in the Musee des Beaux-Arts in Lausanne, gifted by his son Ernest in 1894.


  1. ^ a b c "Ruchonnet, Louis - Swiss Historical Dictionary". Swiss Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences (in French). Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  2. ^ "Famous personalities". Grand Lodge Alpina of Switzerland (in English, French, German, and Italian). Archived from the original on 6 November 2017. Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  3. ^ "Historique". Loge Maçonnique Liberté à l'Orient de Lausanne (in French). Retrieved 23 September 2019.

Further reading[edit]

  • Rossel, Virgile (1893). Louis Ruchonnet: Sa vie, son esprit, son œuvre (in French). Lausanne: F. Payot.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by President of the Swiss National Council
Succeeded by
Preceded by President of the Swiss National Council
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the Swiss Federal Council
Succeeded by