Visionary Innovator of Electromechanics

Youth and Education
Ercole Marelli, born in Milan on 19 May 1867, grew up in a humble background, starting work at a very young age. His career began thanks to the training he received at the Society for the Encouragement of Arts and Crafts (SIAM), where he obtained a diploma in electrical engineering. These years were crucial in forging the character and skills that would make him a pioneer in his field.

First Steps in the World of Electromechanics
After working as a worker and apprentice, Marelli founded the company Ercole Marelli & C. in via Ausonio in Milan in 1891. Here, he began producing physics and geodesy equipment, and electro-medical devices. His work soon gained recognition, marking the beginning of a long and fruitful career.

Marriage and Family
Ercole Marelli married Maddalena Bressanini, a woman of proletarian background. From their marriage four children were born: Paola, Ferdinando, Fermo and Sara. Family played a central role in Marelli's life, influencing many of his decisions and his social commitment.

Collaborations and Expansion
Thanks to collaboration with key figures such as Bartolomeo Cabella of Tecnomasio Italiano and Brown Boveri, and later with Giovanni Agnelli, Marelli extended its influence in the industrial world. His collaboration with Agnelli was particularly significant, leading to the foundation of the Fabbrica Italiana Magneti Marelli.

Innovations and Technological Developments
Marelli was a pioneer in the electric fan sector, contributing significantly to technological development in Italy. His company specialized in various sectors, from the production of ignition magnetos to collaboration with FIAT.

The Post-War Period and the Handover
After the death of Ercole Marelli in 1922, the leadership of the company passed into the hands of Antonio Stefano Benni, and later to his son Fermo. Under their direction, the company continued to grow and innovate, maintaining a leading position in the industry.

The Legacy of Ercole Marelli
Ercole Marelli's life was characterized by a constant commitment to innovation and industrial development. His legacy, which extends from 19 May 1867 to 28 August 1922, is that of a man who transformed a small laboratory into one of the main industrial realities of the electromechanical sector, leaving an indelible mark on Italian industrial history.

Patronage and Contributions to Society

Ercole Marelli was a well-known patron. He invested in professional training and sponsored many activities in Milan. He left a legacy of "one million lire" to the Society for the Encouragement of Arts and Crafts to strengthen the schools of mechanics and electricity.

Historical Archive and Exhibition
The documentation produced by Ercole Marelli is preserved at the ISEC Foundation in Villa Puricelli Guerra, and at the Magneti Marelli historical archive. This archive collects an important documentary heritage for the history of industry in the fields of motor vehicles, telecommunications, radio and television.

Ercole Marelli was a visionary who left an indelible mark on the Italian industrial landscape. His legacy lives on not only through his innovations, but also through his commitment to professional education and cultural patronage.
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